Let nothing stop you from stepping into the New Year 2024 with a flawless skin and a radiant glow by kickstarting your skincare journey and renewing your commitment to self-care. According to skin experts, this is an excellent time to reconsider your skincare regimen for the winter.
In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Jatin Mittal, Skincare Expert, Cosmetologist and Co-Founder at Abhivrit Aesthetics in New Delhi, highlighted tips and smart hacks that you may find helpful if your skin reacts adversely to the changing of the seasons –
1. Apply your hydrating products to moist skin
Since there is less humidity in the winter, we need as much moisture as possible to keep our skin barrier intact. When you apply products over moist skin, you’re adding moisture (from water) and trapping it in with your skincare. However, there’s no need to overdo it. Store your skincare products in the bathroom. The ideal time to apply moisturiser is right after you have a shower, when your skin is still wet. The body is in the same boat. This is even more advantageous if the moisturising agent in your moisturiser has a humectant (a substance that retains moisture), such glycerin, hyaluronic acid or polyglutamic acid—all of which are commonly included in face creams.
2. Give up fragrance in skincare products
A small percentage of people may find fragrance pleasant in skincare products but it is irritating for particularly those with sensitive or reactive skin. It’s okay if you can handle scented skincare products in the wintertime. For others, though, it can be a different story. During this time of year, people are more prone to irritation and are generally more sensitive. Fragrances in cleansers that you wash off might also irritate people.
Some sage advice about fragrance, especially for people who get eczema or dry skin on their necks during the winter months, – we wear more occlusive clothing in the winter, such as chunky scarves and rollnecks. If you wear perfume and put any occlusion over it, the skin barrier is likely to be more sensitive and could cause an itchy, irritated neck. In other words, keep fragrance to your clothes only.
3. Try skin layering
Skin layering technique ahead of the cold weather specifies that, combination of serums that contain two ingredients in particular: polyglutamic acid (which draws moisture into the skin, making it hydrated and plump) and niacinamide (otherwise known as vitamin B3, which improves skin hydration). Then again coat the upper layer of skin with moisturiser or sunscreen. This term is “skin flooding or skin layering”.
This is quite a sensible move, particularly if the cold is truly affecting your skin. The layering method is useful because it allows you to moisturise your skin without clogging it with thick moisturisers, which may irritate it. Since your skin barrier is already compromised in the cold, niacinamide in particular is beneficial for it. Nonetheless, I would advise giving everything some time to fully absorb between applications adds Dr. Mittal.
4. Refrain from over moisturising
Applying a thick layer of skin-cocooning moisturiser if you’re experiencing dry skin. You could even reapply it as the day goes on. If you overdo it, it might do more harm than good, particularly if it contains chemicals like mineral oils, petrolatum, lanolin and paraffin oil that block pores. It’s possible that dry skin is caused by factors other than just being too hot or cold outside your home. It can be the result of skin irritation. Many people overmoisturise, which exacerbates the issue and leaves their skin flaky and scaly. As said earlier, layering is the answer. Layering is far superior. Instead of covering your skin in a heavy, sticky coating of makeup, you’re allowing it to absorb lighter layers.
5. Avoid these cleansing mistakes
Although foaming cleansers are wonderful for oily and acne-prone skin, some experts disagree with them since they are drying during the winter. It’s fantastic if you’re using one and it functions well for you. However, in the winter, use a creamier cleanser for dry skin.
The majority of people don’t use cleaners as recommended. Many of us don’t apply enough pressure, which prevents them from reaping the rewards. At least give it a minute. Not adequately wiping it off is another error. To get rid of it completely, give it ten or twelve good sprays of water.
Use a mild, creamy cleanser in the morning and a foamy cleanser in the evening to equalise the effects and get rid of sunscreen and makeup cleaners that include polyhydroxy acids or PHAs. These cleaners are excellent for the winter months. First of all, compared to typical exfoliating acids, they are kinder. Secondly, PHAs keep the skin hydrated.
6. Buy a mist moisturiser
Face mists have advanced significantly and now have a thicker texture, which is perfect for winter. Your skin undergoes significant changes over the winter, contingent upon both internal and external factors. It’s a great idea to have something like a mist that you can apply without perhaps affecting whatever else you’ve applied on your face, such as sunscreen and cosmetics. You might want to use a moisturising mist rather than a real pot or jar of moisturiser if you are prone to acne. It’s generally best to use a light, readily absorbed mist first and then sunscreen on top of that.
7. Try “Skin Cycling”
Skin cycling is a skin-care regimen that allows “rest days” throughout the week so that, following the use of specific products, your skin can heal itself. Try “skin cycling”: apply products that have promising benefits, such as retinol one evening, an exfoliating acid the next, then two nights with a very basic moisturising cream that contains no active ingredients at all to give your skin a short break. Then repeat the same again.
In order to benefit your skin yet lessen discomfort, you might also want to lower the amount of your active components in the winter. Try a lesser percentage product next time, for instance, if your 5-7% glycolic acid toner is almost finished. Retinol is similar in that it can make dry, irritated skin worse in the winter.
Dr Jatin Mittal concluded that even in the winter, but particularly while utilising any of the aforementioned substances, it’s essential to think about wearing sunscreen every day. This is because they may cause skin to become photosensitive.