Skin S.O.S! Five Top Facial Care Tips

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  • When washing your face, be sure to use warm water instead of hot, as the latter strips the skin of its natural oils more quickly. If you can handle the heat, keep the bathroom door shut. This will lock in much-needed humidity post-shower or bath. Use a mild cleanser versus a fragrant, deodorant bar, and when drying off, pat the skin instead of rubbing it. Finally, be sure to apply your moisturizer 3-5 minutes after a shower or bath. This ensures that the moisture in the skin is trapped before it escapes.
  • Know what’s in your moisturizer, and know when to switch. As the weather turns cooler, swap a daily lotion for a rich cream or ointment. Also keep in mind that a good moisturizer should never be judged by its price tag. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends looking for ingredients such as lactic acid or urea, which help alleviate dryness. Hyaluronic acid, dimethicone, glycerin, lanolin, mineral oil and petroleum have all been recommended to help trap moisture.
  • Pucker up! Dermatologists recommend applying a lip balm to help heal dry, cracked lips, especially one with SFP 15. The AAD recommends petroleum jelly at night, while applying a nightly lip balm (and eye balm) also helps. Continuing to use the lip balm once lips are cured of their dryness will also keep them soft and supple.
  • Safeguard your skin! Wear sunscreen every day, and yes, that means rain or shine. The AAD reminds us that even in the winter, exposure to the sun’s rays speeds up the aging process of the skin, increasing the risk of dryness, wrinkles, and age spots. Use at least SPF 15 and be sure it’s broad spectrum, which protects from both UVA and UVB rays.
  • Anti-aging cream aggravating? Check the label: some anti-aging products contain alpha hydroxyl acids that may irritate dry, itchy skin. Veer towards a moisturizing formula. This also applies to your makeup bag-switch from powder products to cream formulas, which are less likely to dry the skin. The best choice is a moisturizing foundation if you are still feeling the drought.

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