Dry skin can strike from nowhere: one minute, you’re smugly admiring your smooth complexion; the next, your skin is dull, rough and – worst of all – flaky. Blame it on the drying effects of winter, but our skin is at its most vulnerable to dryness in these icy months, when a lit-from-within glow can seem incredibly hard to come by.
But with the right routine, it is possible to maintain hydrated, soft and healthy-looking skin all winter long. Keep reading to find out how.
The leading cause of dry skin
“Dry skin can be caused by things such as cold weather and heating (and going from one to the other),” says marie claire acting beauty director Sally Hunwick. “It can also be due to overly hot showers and baths – so tempting during a cold winter!”
Beyond the harsh effects of our climate, many women experience dryness and a compromised skin barrier because they’ve packed their skincare routine with too many active ingredients. Remember, often a simple routine is best: look for products with fewer ingredients and avoid mixing actives (for instance, AHAs, BHAs and retinol) without seeking medical advice on what’s right for your skin type.
The difference between dryness and dehydration
Some women have permanently dry skin, but even oily or combination skin types can experience phases where their face feels tight, dull and not as smooth as they would like. This is usually down to dehydration, when the skin lacks water (as opposed to dry skin, which lacks oil). Different causes, yes, but the approach to replenishing the skin’s moisture levels is usually the same. Which leads us to…
How to fight dryness
Adding a natural facial oil to your winter skincare regimen is the best way to keep dreaded dryness at bay. “I love a facial oil in winter because they’re super-hydrating and packed with antioxidants,” says Hunwick. “Most facial oils are designed to mimic the skin so you’ll find they absorb really easily without causing an oil slick.”
Case in point: Thursday Plantation Macadamia Daily Face Oil and Daily Body Oil, which slow skin’s water loss and support the skin’s natural protective barrier to protect against dryness. Apply the Daily Face Oil directly to your skin, or add a few drops to your moisturiser to boost hydration levels and restore radiance.
Beyond natural oils, avoid harsh or drying scrubs and foaming cleansers, which can strip the skin of its protective barrier, in favour of nurturing cleansing balms or oils, especially in winter.