The winter months are harsh to the skin and hair. Due to the colder temperatures and lack of humidity in the air, the skin and hair can dry out. It’s important to take steps to look after your skin and hair. After all, the summer bodies are created in the winter months.
During the winter, you can be left feeling like you have rough and itchy skin. Your hair can look limp and annoying. It doesn’t take a lot to repair the damage and prevent the drying out process. While there are daily steps, you can easily add them into your daily routine. There are even some that you can do in the shower or overnight!
Here are the seven essential tips you need to keep your hair and skin from drying out during the winter months. You can follow them on a yearly basis and even keep some of them up during the summer for beautiful, glowing skin.
Switch to a Gentle Exfoliant
While you will still want to exfoliate your skin, you need to think carefully about the type that you use. Your skin will already suffer from some damage. Rather than a harsh exfoliant that will strip away all the oils, you want a mild, gentle option. It can seem against the regular advice, but even if you usually have oily skin, it will be a little drier in the winter.
Gentle exfoliants will still remove the dead skin cells and grime from the pores. You’ll still get rid of the bacteria buildup to prevent the growth of acne. At the same time, you’re making it easier for moisturizing creams to penetrate your skin. It will be easier to moisturize the deeper layers and lock in that moisture throughout the winter.
If you are concerned about acne and bacteria growth, look out for products that include hyaluronic acid. This is perfect for moisturizing deeply while clearing the skin fully. You can find exfoliating creams that include this ingredient.
You can also make your exfoliating products. Skip on the citric acid and opt for some coconut oil with some sea salt. The salt will dissolve in the water to avoid problems with your plumbing, and the coconut oil will help to moisturize while you’re exfoliating. You will also get other nutrients, including vitamin E, for better skin repair.
Citric acid is harsh on the skin, especially if you have dry skin. It’s reactive and can lead to discomfort and a burning sensation.
Use Hydrating Masks on the Hair and Skin
Hydrating facial masks are popular, but this isn’t the only place you can use them during the winter. You want to stock up on hydrating masks for the hair. Many of the options for the hair can be worn overnight, helping to limit the amount of time you spend out of your day protecting your skin and hair.
You don’t need to use the hydrating masks daily. This is something to use on a weekly or twice-weekly basis. Opt for a deep-conditioning mask for both the hair and face, helping to lock the moisture deep into the layers of the skin and into the roots of the hair. You’ll repair from the base, which helps to encourage better skin and hair in the long term.
If you want to make your deep conditioners, opt for either coconut oil or argan oil. Both are used on African-American hair, which is traditionally more dry and problematic. The two oils are deeply moisturizing, so will make your hair look beautiful and make it easier to handle. Coconut oil is also a sealant, which means it locks whatever moisture you’ve put in. Argan oil is the best for vitamin E, helping to repair damage and reduce signs of dryness on the skin or scalp.
The downside with coconut oil is that it can block the pores. If you have problems with oily skin, you’ll want to look at argan or almond oil instead.
If you don’t want to use coconut or argan oil for hydrating facial masks, make sure you add some honey. This is packed with antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, helping to get rid of the bacteria that cause acne to form on the skin. It’s also highly moisturizing, so you can get clear and protect skin from the winter temperatures.
Reduce the Heating Products You Use
The winter is not the time to style your hair daily with the heated products. Your heated equipment will dry out the hair, causing damage to the whole head. Even with protective sprays, you will still dry out your hair.
While you don’t want to style your hair at all, you want to think about the way you do it. Did you know you can get beautiful curls overnight the old-fashioned way still? It uses coconut oil and ties to help add the moisture while improving the look of your hair. Sure, it will need to be done the night before, but you’ll find it perfect to reduce damage.
If you are going to opt for using products to style your hair, make sure you moisturize beforehand. Use a leave-in conditioner, so it has the time to work through to the middle and lower layers of your locks and get into the roots. Even when you’re styling, you’ll be able to hydrate the scalp better.
Think about your hair type. Those with fine hair won’t need to use a lot of the conditioner. Avoid adding it to the roots, too. Your hair will look like a greasy mass. Start from the middle point of the hair and work to the ends, keeping the use light to avoid making your hair too heavy.
Get Rid of the Sulfates
One of the worst things you can add to your skin or hair is sulfates. Sulfates are included in some products, including fabric detergents, shampoos, conditioners, and body washes. All they do is strip the skin of the moisture and natural chemicals, leading to the dry and damaged skin. Sulfates help to create that bubbly element to body washes and shampoos but aren’t necessary!
Your hair won’t be completely washed either when you use anything with sulfates in. The chemicals are left behind in both the hair and on the skin. You end up with an irritated scalp or irritated skin, leaving flakiness behind and blocked pores.
It doesn’t matter what type of hair you have or how else you protect your hair and skin. The sulfates will cause more damage than the good they offer and aren’t worth the hassle.
This can take time to find all the products with sulfates. You can even find it impossible in some cases. You may want to start making your products to use in the winter to help avoid the problems.
Change Your Pillowcases
This isn’t just about changing your sheets regularly—although that is something you should do and will help protect your skin and hair. You want to change the type of material you use for your pillowcases. While they are more expensive, silk pillowcases are the way to go for protecting the skin and hair during the winter months. They’ll also help you get a better night’s sleep throughout the year.
When you wake up after using other materials for your pillowcase, you’ll find that your hair is a little difficult to manage. You get a lot of flyways, especially if you have fine hair. Your skin can also end up with the crease lines, showing how you slept overnight.
Silk pillowcases don’t leave these problems. The material is neutralizing on the hair and skin, preventing that static electricity that causes your hair to go everywhere.
But why is this important in the winter? Surely it’s beneficial throughout the year. Well, it is, but the flyaway and static are worse in the winter. Yours dried out hair is more susceptible to flyaway and taming issues. During the winter, your skin is also more likely to suffer from creases, and this can lead to some more permanent changes in your skin. So if you want to spend money and make your pillowcases durable, have them stocked ready for the winter months and switch back to others in the summer.
You’ll also want to think about the way you sleep during the winter. Avoid sleeping on your front or your side. This leads to more marks on the face and some pulling. While it’s a problem throughout the year, during the winter, your skin is drier and more susceptible to damage. You’re more likely to see more signs of aging appearing.
Keep the Humidifier Going in the Home
Dry heat is one of the worst things for your hair and skin. While you want to remain warm in the home, you also want to get rid of that dry heat. This means installing a humidifier in various rooms in your home. One of the most important is your bedroom. Humid heat is more comfortable, so you’ll get a better night’s sleep in the winter.
You’ll also want to think about the temperatures you do have your home at. Warm doesn’t mean hot. There’s no need to see your temperatures rise 30C or more throughout the day. You want to remain at between 18C and 25C, depending on your preferences. Any more than that and you’ll dry out your skin regardless of the humidifier. You’ll also find your bedroom isn’t comfortable when you get to bed.
It’s also important to think about how you warm up after you get into the house. The cold air outside will force your vessels to constrict to protect them from the cold air. This can lead to issues when the body starts to warm up afterward. You can end up with broken capillaries if you change the temperatures too quickly. Your skin starts to swell, and this can lead to pain and other health problems.
You’ve likely experienced chilblains and problems when you’ve warmed your hands up, especially as a child. You put your hands in front of the fire to get them warm quickly and feel the sensations back in the fingers. This is usually a tingling and uncomfortable feeling.
Keep Water Temperature Down
Like you want to keep the temperatures down in the home, you’ll also need to think about the temperatures of the water you use. There’s no need to have extremely hot showers or baths, even though you’ll want them in the dead of winter.
Water that is too hot is extremely drying to the skin. You strip out all the natural moisture and then never replace it afterward. Warm water doesn’t do this. You don’t raise the body temperature enough, so you can do more with the exfoliants and washing products that you use.
Don’t forget about the washing up in the kitchen! Keep the temperatures down to avoid burning the hands and stripping the moisture. You can also benefit from using washing up gloves. Apply some moisturizing cream to your hands before putting the gloves on and then use them in the water. The heat inside will help to open your pores and soak in the moisture. You’ll get rid of the chapped skin around your knuckles, nails, and hands.
You can do something similar with your feet. However, you will want to make sure your feet get air now and then. The damp and dark area is perfect for growing fungal infections, and the feet are the most problematic.
Look After Your Hair and Skin in the Winter
The winter months are extremely damaging and drying to the skin and hair. With the following simple tips, you can keep the moisture locked in and keep your skin and hair looking healthy and natural. There’s no need to go out and buy special products, except for the silk pillowcases. Most of the items you need are already in your home and are extremely easy to use.