Five important tips for winter skin care

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Now that the season of sweat and sun is over and winter is coming, the most important battle becomes taking care of your skin during the cold Canadian winter months. I talked to esthetician Paige Russell about what you can do to keep your skin looking the best during the frigid, dry months of the year. Here are some tips that she says will help keep your skin healthy and to prevent dryness:

1. Drink water! It’s important to keep hydrated to keep your skin clear year-round. “Drink lots of water,” says Russell, “keep hydrated from the inside out.”
2. Exfoliating is very important when it comes to skin care. Russell recommends exfoliating two to three times per week, unless your exfoliant specifies otherwise. “Exfoliating removes dead skin buildup that can cause the skin to appear dull and dry,” says Russell. However, she recommends that you not use the same exfoliant for your face as you would use on other parts of your body, “it will be too strong or abrasive for the face.”

3. Some people don’t realize that you can get sunburned during the winter. That means harmful UV rays could be damaging your skin year-round. Make sure to use a sunscreen on your face every day. In the winter I use a moisturizer with sunscreen in it before applying my foundation.

4. If you are experiencing dry and irritated skin on your body you might want to try a body wash or moisturizer with oatmeal in it; this helps resuscitate cold-weather irritated skin. Even taking a too-hot bath could potentially dry out your skin; a bubble bath with oatmeal in it can be a life saver.

5. The holy commandment of skin care is: MOISTURIZE! It’s imperative that a moisturizing lotion is part of your daily skin care regime all year round; however it is especially important in the winter. Russell recommends using a lotion or cream twice daily, morning and night. “Cold air and the dry heat from heaters and wood stoves dry out your skin. Be sure [to use] a face cream, body cream and foot cream in the appropriate areas as the skin is very different in all of these areas,” Says Russell, “Avoid petroleum jellies anywhere other than your lips, as they have absolutely no hydrating properties and are not absorbed into the skin.”

If you follow these steps you should be able to help keep your skin looking clear and hydrated. When it comes to skin care products, it’s not the time to cheap out! Final words of wisdom from a professional, “Don’t waste your money on inexpensive skin care. A lot of these products don’t hold up to their claims and you end up wasting your money. It’s always best to buy professional grade products from a local spa!” So if you want to put your money where it is going to count, it’s probably best to start off with a professional product rather than an inexpensive department store product to get the job done.

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