Winter weather brings more than snowfall and holiday tidings. Dry, flaky skin on the face, hands, and other body areas can cause “winter itch,” and a dull appearance. Luckily, there are a variety of ways you can combat these winter woes from everyday tips you can do at home to skincare treatments at our Bellingham or Burlington offices.
What Happens to Your Skin in the Winter Months
It’s common knowledge that the skin is the largest organ in your body. It plays a critical role in your health, dealing with temperature, touch, and pain. Your skin even has different receptors for cold and warmth. As the air gets colder, your body conserves heat by narrowing blood vessels, which then causes your epidermis (surface layer of your skin tissues) to flake or crack. That causes uncomfortable symptoms such as itchy and red skin, chapped lips, eyebrow dandruff, sandpaper hands, and so on. The areas on your body that are exposed to the cold—typically your face and hands—are the most at risk for these changes.
The drop in humidity causes a host of skin problems, as well. Your skin regulates the balance of fluid, so when those blood vessels narrow, your body is also conserving moisture in the deeper layers of skin. Dry air zaps the moisture from your skin and going from cold outdoor temperatures to heated indoor spaces makes this process all the more confusing. If you love wool socks and sitting by a lit fireplace, this further depletes your skin’s moisture.
Tips for Healthy, Hydrated Winter Skin
The first step in addressing “winter itch‚” and dull, dry skin is moisturizing with cream-based products or petrolatum to lock in moisture. These options work better than your average lotion, and fragrance-free products work well for sensitive skin. The key to making the most of your moisturizer is to apply right after a bath or shower to trap in that surface moisture but remember to choose lukewarm water when bathing.
Other tips from Dr. Tsitsis and our skincare professionals at RejuvenationMD® – Aesthetic Skin Treatment & Wellness Center include:
- Be Careful How Often You Cleanse: It’s important to wash your face, hands, and your whole body, but it’s often enough to cleanse your face once a day, depending on the condition of your skin.
- Use a Humidifier: Room humidifiers can help dry, itchy skin by restoring moisture in the air.
- Protect Your Skin: Remember to use hydrating lip balm and sunscreen. Snow can reflect up to 80 percent of the sun’s rays, but you’re also at risk when there’s dreary weather as UV rays reach through the cloud cover.
- Wear Clothing that Doesn’t Irritate Your Skin: Winter clothing made from wool and similar fabrics can irritate and dry the skin, so wear breathable, soft clothing beneath these garments to avoid feeling itchy.
- Stay Hydrated and Take Supplements: Drink plenty of water and consider taking Vitamin D supplements to make up for the lack of sun exposure in the winter. Omega-3 or omega-6 fatty acids can help hydrate skin as well.
Schedule A Skincare Treatment to Restore a Healthy Glow
While the tips listed above can help minimize the appearance of dull, dry skin and ease uncomfortable symptoms, they can’t address skin conditions or eliminate cosmetic concerns. At RejuvenationMD® – Aesthetic Skin Treatment & Wellness Center, we have a variety of options to help winter skin problems, such as:
- Laser Treatments: From Laser Skin Resurfacing with the MicroLaserPeel® and NanoLaserPeel™ technologies to skin rejuvenation with Forever Young BBL™ and Halo™ Hybrid Fractional Laser, these treatments offer dramatic results that transform dull skin into a luminous glow.
- Specialty Facials: Our facials involve a multi-step treatment that requires no downtime and strengthens the skin. We customize facials using citric, salicylic, and lactic acid peels but also offer facials without chemical peels. Facials are followed up with rich serums to nourish the skin. Our signature protocol can be used for all skin types and conditions.
- Skincare Products: In the winter months, you may have to alter your skin care regimen. Our skincare line uses the medicinal benefits of green tea and high quality, pharmaceutical grade ingredients to help multiple skin conditions such as acne and discoloration.
Contact RejuvenationMD® – Aesthetic Skin Treatment & Wellness Center
If you’re struggling with winter skin issues or have other skin concerns, contact us in Bellingham at (360) 685-8408 or Burlington at (360) 982-2620 to schedule your appointment today. We offer a variety of options for patients in the surrounding areas of Washington State.