Colder weather often leaves skin feeling or looking damaged, with many of us experiencing redness, tightness or dryness as we head into winter.
Read on for some expert advice on how to keep your skin healthy during this harsh time of year.
How does winter weather affect the skin?
Among the numerous environmental factors – collectively known as the exposome - that can negatively affect skin’s health, winter’s often harsh weather can lead to our complexions feeling dry and flaky, with the accumulated effects of wind, snow and rain leaving the epidermis potentially feeling inflamed. Just like in the summer heat, skin becomes dryer as a result of exposure to inclement weather and indoor heating, which can result in certain skin conditions (such as eczema, psoriasis, or rosacea) worsening during the colder months.
So, what goes on below the surface of the skin when it’s freezing out? As a result of overexposure to cold weather, the epidermis’ barrier functions – responsible for protecting skin from pollution, UV rays and the effects of dehydration, as well as stress and fatigue - become weaker*, leaving skin more susceptible to damage from these external elements. To counteract these negative effects, hydration is key when it comes to looking after our skin in winter: the better hydrated your skin, the stronger its barrier functions become.
How to reinforce the skin during wintertime
It goes without saying that it’s crucial to drink enough water to ensure the epidermis remains properly hydrated. This is particularly important in winter, when we tend to feel less thirsty as a result of the body’s blood vessels shrinking in order to help us stay warm. What’s more, research has found that during periods of stress, the body’s ability to retain water is reduced. To wake up tired or fatigued skin, consider stashing a bottle of refreshing facial mist in your bag or purse.
Keeping your skin’s mineral levels topped up with Vichy Mineralizing Water can help minimize skin’s water loss, as well as reinforcing the cutaneous barrier, which helps to prevent skin from cracking or peeling. Replenishing skin when at its most sensitive during the winter months will help you to face the new year feeling fresh and radiant.