My Winter Skincare Regimen

Up mount Hood walking through thick snow, hmmm…

In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invisible summer. – Albert Camus.

Check out my video on youtube for a more lively experience

Winter in most of India is beautiful because it never really gets unbearably cold. And even when it does, the afternoons usually give some respite with some warm sunshine. It’s the only time in the year that is not so hot and humid {most of the places I lived in were sea level, coastal regions}. Skin and hair behave themselves. All the big festivals arrive during winter. I really like Indian winters. They’re beautiful. I have combination skin which is really oily in the T-zone and normal elsewhere. The place I live in is usually hot and humid, so I have a lot of enlarged unhappy pores. My skin behaves a lot better during the winter months than any other time in the year. But you still have to do some things right. Think moisture. Lets begin with…the lips.

Lip care: think lip balm, tinted lip balm, chapstick, petroleum jelly

1. Chapped Lips : Most people succumb to this problem. The solution is very simple. Use a lip balm/chapstick/petroleum jelly ever-so-often. You can use a tinted lip balm/chapstick for a flush of natural colour. Refrain from licking your dry lips in a subconscious attempt to hydrate them. They do more harm than good.

Night care: cold cream

2. Dry Skin : Use a heavy duty cold cream like Pond’s or Nivea at night. Don’t be afraid to slather on some on your face as well. Cold creams are the best. If you don’t like the oily residue, reserve the drill for bedtime. It shouldn’t really bother you much then. And as a bonus, it will stay on for a longer duration, that too at a time when cell turnover and repair work is at its peak.

Face oils

I understand by the time it’s time to go to bed, you just want to crash. But, try and massage some face oil {if not cold cream} into your skin, a leave-in moisturizing night mask, or just a night cream. Facial oils are great during the winter. They help to keep your skin supple, dewy and hydrated.

perfumed lotions and creams are great to layer up on scent during the day

If the bedtime grease is insufficient for your winter woes, you can use a body lotion during the day. There are innumerable options available in the market. There’s Vaseline, Dove, Ponds, The Body Shop, Bath and Body Works, Victoria’s Secret, Vaseline, Himalaya, Dove, Lakme etc. The list is endless. All work just the same, in my opinion. Pick one that suits your budget. If time permits, it is a good idea to slather on some lotion after your bath. Pores are still open then and they will shut and seal some of the moisture within. I know this for a fact and have experienced its benefits. But, like I said….if time permits 😉

Body lotions

Areas like hands, feet, elbows and knees require an extra dose of moisture, so try using a rich textured cream like a body butter or cold cream on these areas. Petroleum jelly is a fairly good substitute too. You can retain the moisture with a pair of cozy socks all through the night and thank me in the morning when you wake up to soft, happy feet.

Natural remedies from your kitchen

If you are into natural products, coconut oil, olive oil and ghee are excellent moisturizers.

my winter {milder} face wash

3. Change your facewash. What was great during those hot and humid, sweaty summers will only dry and wreck havoc on your skin during winter. I love using this other facewash that leaves my skin squeaky clean. But I switch to a milder facewash during winters. Himalaya Purifying Neem Face Wash works great for me. Try to pick one without SLSs {detergent}, sure – it won’t foam much, but it won’t dry out your visage either. Find one that suits your skin.

Say no to drying and harsh ingredients

4. Stay away from acids, alcohol, astringent and toners. While I love fuller’s earth/mud/multani mitti, AHAs, retinols, glycolic acid, hyaluronic acid, salicylic acid or any other acids and clay in products, it’s best to stay away from these, especially the higher concentrations.

5. Stay hydrated and drink plenty of water. We tend to consume a lot lesser during winter.

Moisturize your hair to reduce static

6. Hair : So your’e finally happy its not hot and humid and you don’t have to deal with a frizzy mess. But now, there is static when you comb your hair, you feel your hair gets attracted to everything like a magnet, especially those woolens! Keep your hair moisturized. Use a conditioner; that should help reduce the static by reducing dryness and increasing the density of individual strands. Do not forget to oil your scalp every now and then. This will help prevent flaking of skin there.

7. Exfoliate lesser than what you would during the summer months. You don’t want to irritate your skin. Skip it all together, if required.

One of life’s many regrets : 40 jars of strawberry lip balm VS 1 single MAC tinted lip conditioner….hmmm

Enjoy the winter months!

Ruelha

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