Winter Skincare Switch-Up
With only a couple of weeks left of Autumn (aka. the best season of the year) the weather has well and truly turned here, with frosty mornings and chilly evenings quickly becoming the norm. It’s at about the same time of year that I dust off my winter woollies that I start to switch up my skincare routine and add in extra moisture and nourishment wherever I can. Without being too specific about particular products, these are the skincare basics that I tend to implement at this wintery time of year to combat the drier air, colder winds and the inevitable fact that I spend way too much time indoors under heaters.
A Nourishing Cleanser.
Cleansers that hydrate while they work are my preference year-round but if you tend to enjoy foaming cleansers, micellar waters or cleansing wipes (please don’t, they’re terrible for the environment and honestly not much better for your face) then now is the perfect time to swap them out for a more hydrating option. Typically cleansing milks, creams and gels are a little gentler and more nourishing but it really comes down to the ingredients. Look for products that mention hydrating in the name or contain hydrating ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerin and Ceramides high up in the ingredients list. A few favourites are The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser, Clarins Cleansing Milk and Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel.
A Great Hyaluronic Acid Serum.
I sing the praises of Hyaluronic Acid all year round and I use one almost every day, but I find it’s especially essential to the comfort and health of my skin in the cooler months. There are a million options out there but I find the lighter and thinner consistencies absorb best for my skin, but I know some people prefer a thicker gel. Make sure you’re applying it to slightly damp skin (so straight after cleansing/toning or use a mist if you feel like your face has dried off a bit too much) because the way Hyaluronic Acid works is it grabs hold of the moisture around it and it allows it to dive deeper into the skin. No moisture? Not much to dive with; so for the best results apply over damp skin. Some of my favourites include Jordan Samuel The Hydrate Serum, Hylamide Low-Molecular HA Serum and Dr Dennis Gross Hyaluronic Marine Hydration Booster.
A Quality Facial Oil.
In winter when my skin is feeling dry and dehydrated from the harsh wind and too much time under heaters I like to finish my evening skincare routine with an oil. It seals in all the hydrating layers I’ve put on prior and creates a nice barrier to limit trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL – basically a fancy way of saying moisture evaporating from the skin). I only use a drop or two, warm it up between my hands and then press it in. You may prefer to use more and massage it in but my skin prefers the press and forget method over anything too vigorous. Some favourites include Sunday Riley Juno, Kiehls Midnight Recovery Serum and Kypris Rose Oil.
Keep in mind that facial oils usually don’t have a long shelf life, so buying a huge bottle of oil, although it may seem more economical, might not be the best choice. I typically opt for smaller or travel-sized options where possible, especially when I’m trying them out for the first time..
A Nourishing Mist.
We all know how refreshing a cool spritz of something can be in the Summer, but adding a mist into your skincare routine helps to sandwich additional hydration in between the layers of your other products. It’s also super beneficial before Hyaluronic Acid because it gives a little extra moisture for it to bind to, so misting before a Hyaluronic Acid serum or moisturiser is always a good idea. Two that I really rate are Hydrate The Mist from Jordan Samuel and Mario Badescu’s Facial Spray With Aloe, Herbs & Rosewater.
A Quality Moisturiser That Suits Your Skin.
Notice I didn’t say thick here? A rich and greasy moisturiser (although great for many with dry skin) is often too much for someone like me who has combo, spot-prone skin. I prefer to find a cream that absorbs quickly, hydrates well and really seals in everything I’ve put underneath it. Some of my favourites are the Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream, Murad Hydro-Dynamic Moisture and Rodial Dragon’s Blood Velvet Cream. All of these are seriously hydrating and deeply nourishing but aren’t too thick or greasy for me.
And just as a final tip, although it may look cloudy and dreary outside, and you might be adamant that you haven’t seen the sun in days, it’s still recommended to keep the sun protection up just like you would in the warmer months. A daily covering of at least SPF30+ plus regular top-ups when you’re outside for extended periods might feel redundant but it’s still super important.