Slathering on sunscreen comes very naturally to us in the summer. Protecting our skin from the effects of a harsh winter is just as important as maintaining its radiant glow during the warmer months.
You don’t need to buy expensive creams or lotions to end up with healthy looking skin. Simple home remedies can do the trick and the results are often much better.
Drink lots of water: Not everyone will enjoy the idea of drinking six or eight glasses of water in the winter but as temperatures drop and the air gets drier, it sucks out the moisture from the body, leaving it dry and scaly. If a glass of water isn’t your thing in the winter, you can also enjoy warm drinks such as hot chocolate or herbal tea to keep you hydrated.
Water-dense fruit and vegetables: Fruits like oranges and grapes contain 99 per cent water and play a major role in hydrating the body as well as providing essential minerals. Crunchy vegetables such as cucumber, carrots, lettuce and zucchini also help improve dry skin as they contain juices that are similar in composition to that of body fluids.
Moisturize religiously: Apart from a dent in your wallet, store bought moisturizers contain certain chemicals that can sometimes irritate sensitive skin. Homemade ones are a better choice and leave your skin feeling soft and smooth when applied regularly. An easy one is a mixture of coconut oil, vanilla extract and Vitamin E oil.
Bundle up: Never leave the house without scarves, hats, mittens and anything else that can be used to cover exposed skin. Wearing inadequate clothing can result in frostbites and cold-related illnesses like the flu.
Attend to your nails: Fingernails can get very dry and brittle in the winter because of the loss of keratin, the protein that helps strengthen it. Shea butter when applied on the nails and cuticles can help improve the quality of skin around it and prevent dryness. Using nail polish remover can also dry out your nails so you may want to think twice about painting your nails too often.
Oil massages: There’s nothing like a nice, warm oil massage to relax your muscles and soothe your skin. The winter season can also cause the skin on your scalp to flake, leading to a dandruff outbreak. Massaging the scalp with some warm olive oil can help get rid of this to a certain extent. Using tea tree oil along with your shampoo and conditioner is also another option.
Vitamin D: During the winter months, lack of sunlight causes the Vitamin D levels in our bodies to drop. High deficiency can cause patchy skin, weak bones and other ailments. Some ways to get the levels back up are by having foods rich in Vitamin D such as milk, eggs, fish and shiitake mushrooms and y consuming supplements.
Short showers: Taking a long, hot, luxurious bath is quite a treat when it’s cold outside but the hot water strips the skin of essential oils and leaves it dry and irritated. Make sure your showers are brief, use lukewarm water and pat yourself dry instead of rubbing the skin vigorously.
Loose clothes: Soft and loose cotton fabrics help avoid skin irritations caused by perspiration and chaffing.
Lip care: Once the winter season sets in, lip balms must be a permanent fixture in your bag. The cold air can dry out the soft layer of skin on the lips and can cause peeling. Also avoid licking your lips if you want to prevent chapping since it further dehydrates the skin and causes discomfort.
Perfect feet: Cold winters lead to unsightly cracks and dry skin and that makes caring for your feet a priority. Use a foot filer to remove dead skin cells and give yourself a home pedicure. You can also make a sugar scrub to exfoliate the skin and get rid of roughness. Another tip is to rub Vaseline on your feet and cover them with socks before bedtime. You will be surprised to find your feet feeling nice and soft in the morning.
You don’t have to spend your time holed-up indoors to protect yourself from the cold. Dressing in layers and taking necessary precautions can help you enjoy the winter months and stay healthy and active.