Dry skin sucks. Dry skin when it’s too cold to even consider standing naked in your room for more than ten seconds really sucks.
Although the autumn and winter months are some of my favourites, I’m not a fan of the side effects that these months can carry. Anything that can help alleviate flaky, unsightly and uncomfortable dryness, will be welcomed with open arms.
Luckily, for me and anyone in the same boat, I’ve compiled a few tips and products that help make these cooler months easier on our dry limbs and red noses.
Read on for tips and advice on how to control, manage and tackle dry skin with facial skincare, body care products and a few lifestyle changes.
Drink enough (water)
To get the most boring (and predictable) point out of the way first, drink your damn water! I know it’s tough because drinking a cool glass of water when your toes have a blue tinge to them is the last thing we often feel like doing – but being adequately hydrated makes all the difference to our skin.
When you’re getting enough H20 your skin is brighter, plumper and has the capacity to combat dry skin and irritation that dehydrated skin can bring.
Acid tone your heart out
When I began to use active toners on my skin, I started to see the biggest difference in my complexion. I started pretty early, using products like the Clarins Gentle Brightening Toner at around seventeen (what else are you supposed to do with your first paycheck?) but have since fallen out of the habit. Thinking back they were the only things that rid my nose if it’s dry patches and kept my skin smooth all year round.
Nowadays there’s much more chat going on about them, so you’re bound to find something that suits you. The Clarins number is still top of my list, though – perfect for newbies and those with more sensitive skin.
Fresh air will do wonders
I woke up yesterday morning and for the first time in a few weeks (boo you, hormones…) my skin looked even and clear, aside from a couple of persistent blemishes on my chin. I could only put this down to the pleasant five-mile walk me and Jonathan had been on the day before – a walk in the cool air with the winter sun on my face and some heat in my body (I’m pretty unfit, please don’t judge me) is exactly what I needed.
In winter it’s so tempting to curl up and hibernate, but trust me this is doing nothing good for your skin. Take my example to heart and let’s all spend some more time outdoors this season (for our skins sake).
Swap for a rich moisturiser
After stealing my boyfriend’s LUSH moisturiser (Cosmetic Lad) over the weekend my skin looks and feels ten times better. My basic everyday moisturiser had been the Simple Rich Moisturiser but quite honestly it’s not enough for me anymore (even though it was only two pounds…) and swapping out for a much thicker cream has really sparked me to get inquisitive about skincare again.
Instead of something that claims to be rich but sinks into the skin quicker than anything, finding something rich that acts as a hydrating layer of protection on your face, is your best bet – in the true words of Caroline Hirons, your moisturiser is your barrier, it protects your skin from the world and is the coat to your outfit.
Body brushing is an all year round thing…
Dry body brushing is probably one of the easiest ways to get your helping of body exfoliation in. It’s super easy, only takes a couple of minutes pre-shower or bath each day and doesn’t leave you with coffee grounds or gunk all over your bathroom (although sometimes a wet exfoliation does hit the spot… that sounds rude doesn’t it).
I use the Mio Body Brush, which has bristles and those funny massage pellet things, both get my circulation going, my dry skin buffed away and leave me with soft and smooth legs (if I’ve taken the time to shave… usually not). If you have dry skin you have to start including some exfoliation into your routine – trust me when I say it will change the way you think about body care.
Make body balms the everyday
Dry legged gals will already be with me on this one, but light lotions and creams just don’t cut it in the cold weather. Give me a thick, heavy body butter over a standard moisturising lotion any day!
My current balm of choice is the Vichy Ideal Body Balm (which was kindly given to me as a press sample). It’s exactly what dry skin needs this winter, intensely hydrating and protecting your body but staying powdery (far away from greasy and sticky) to the touch. Other favourite body butters of mine include Soap & Glory’s Righteous Butter and The Body Shop’s Shea Body Butter!
Be mindful of hot baths
Hot baths are my vice this time of year. Even if I’m low on bubble bath, they do wonders for my mind and soul – the wonders stop when it comes to my body care, however. Hot baths can dry skin out a lot. Even if you’re not having a boiling soak, long periods of time in water won’t help your skin out if it’s going through a troubling time (I guess the steam could help any facial problems out, but that’s about it).
No way am I going to tell you to stop having these therapeutic baths, simply become a little more mindful about looking after your body. Let’s start turning off the hot tap a little sooner, cutting down the hours of soak time and make sure that we’re keeping hydrated and moisturised when we’re out of the tub.
Embrace lazy moisturising
Now, I know I was just banging on about body butters (and they’re super awesome) but when you’re in a rush, it’s cold and you can’t bear to think about leaving your scaly legs un-slathered, grab an in-shower moisturiser. They’re simply a moisturiser that you use on wet skin in the shower which you shower off after about a minute, leaving you with less painfully dry skin and the peace of mind that you are taking care of yourself.
Nivea sells a budget, happy-go-lucky range of them (my fave scent being the Pampering Honey… yum) and LUSH also have a small range of in-shower body moisturisers (they’re super yummy too). I’ve got my eye on the Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner as a little treat for myself in these colder months – it smells just like Rose Jam!
Do you struggle with drier and more troublesome skin in these autumn and winter months?
If so, I’d love to hear what you do to tackle troublesome skin. Share your own tips and tricks with me in the comments below and on my social platforms!