Style & Beauty

How to Beat Dry Skin in Winter

You don’t have to put up with itchy, irritated skin


Dry skin can be especially hard to control in the winter, when heated homes lack humidity. If you’re prone to dry skin, humidifiers and moisturizers will help, but you can do yourself a favour by tweaking your routine.

Change your bathing routine.

Try to shower for no longer than five to 10 minutes each day; the longer you stay in the shower or bath, the more you’ll strip the outer layer of skin that retains moisture. Avoid overly hot showers, since hot water dries out the skin. Perfumed soaps and products containing alcohol will also dry your skin, so you’re better off switching to moisturizing soaps and using them less often.

Using scrubs such as bath sponges too frequently can also irritate the skin, but at the same time, you don’t want to completely stop exfoliating your skin. Moisturizers won’t be able to penetrate your skin if your pores are clogged. Exfoliate with a product for sensitive skin. Those with super-sensitive skin can try exfoliating using a wet facecloth and no product.

Try to remember to moisturize immediately after you wash your hands or shower. When drying your face or body, avoid scrubbing; instead, lightly pat the skin.

Watch your diet.

Make sure to stay hydrated throughout the day. Drinks lots of water, and cut down on coffee and alcohol, which are diuretics and so cause dehydration and dry skin. Not getting enough fat in your diet can also cause dryness—try snacking on walnuts and avocados.

Choose moisturizers and products with the right ingredients.

When looking for moisturizers, opt for heavy creams with ceramides and hyaluronic acid or serums including antioxidants such as Vitamin C. Avoid face washes meant to combat oily skin and instead look for those with hydrating ingredients such as oatmeal and chamomile.


Photo: iStock/dragana991.