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The most common seasonal concerns about winter skin and how to treat it.

Winter Skin – Face the Cold

The most common seasonal concerns about winter skin and how to treat it.

We are lucky to have fairly mild winters in South Africa, but our outdoorsy nature tends to leave our skin feeling dry and flaky. No matter what your skin type, gender, race, or age, winter will affect your skin and hair negatively. Read on to discover the most common seasonal concerns, as well as how to best combat them. 

Our faces are generally always exposed to the elements, so it makes sense that they will be one of the first areas to suffer from the effects of low temperatures. Dehydration is the most common concern for people during winter. Dehydration is the lack of water in the skin, and this occurs in dry, oily and combination skin types. You can have an oily skin type with large pores, and still suffer from dehydration, which usually makes your skin even more oily as it tries to protect itself due to the lack of natural water in the cells. 

Dehydrated skin will be flaky, rough, and can have small irritated bumps. It can feel as though your skin is too tight, and sensitivity is increased, which will make your skin prone to flushing, greasy, and can sting from sun and wind exposure. 

The best way to soothe and moisturise a sensitised and dehydrated skin is to have a regular skincare routine. From the most basic steps to a more advanced regimen, comfortable skin is in your own hands.

You will want to use a gentle cleanser – either a softly foaming one for oily skin or a milky one for dry skin, and tone with a gentle toner to rebalance your pH levels. Our toners come in a convenient spray bottle which means minimum fuss for you – no faffing with cotton pads. After you’ve washed and toned, apply a moisturiser that’s slightly richer than your summer one, and finish with sunscreen. Your moisturiser should be balancing and absorbing into the skin, not lying on the surface of your skin. Dead skin cells can make it hard for moisturiser to penetrate the skin, so lessening the dry crusty layer on the surface will improve the efficacy of every single skincare product you use. So how do we exfoliate safely?

There are two different kinds of exfoliation. Mechanical (which most of us know as a ‘scrub’), had small bits that we buff over our skin to remove dead surface cells. This one feels very satisfying, but scrubbing too hard too often can make your skin worse! This is better left for your body rather than your face. 

There are also Enzymatic exfoliators, which are made up of natural enzymes that gently ‘eat’ away the bonds between dead skin cells. These dead cells then slough off naturally – so you don’t see it happening but you will feel the results after a couple of uses, and Sometimes even after 1 use! Exfoliation should only be done once or twice a week in extreme cases. This should be done once your skin is cleansed and warm in the shower. Apply a small amount of exfoliator, rub it in, and continue with your shower routine. Once you’re ready to get out, 

rinse the exfoliator off and follow with the rest of your routine. This will leave the skin smoother, softer, make your shaves closer, and help the rest of your products absorb easily, thus wasting less product and time

Another quick trick to instantly boost your skin is a serum or mask. Serums are designed to be left on the skin, and masks are designed to be rinsed off. You decide which will suit your skincare routine better, and use it regularly to give a super-enhanced effect to your regimen. There are various textures for different skin types, but the most popular for gents is usually a hydrating gel, which absorbs quickly and leaves no residue. 

Sunscreen as always is nonnegotiable. Even though you aren’t boiling in our African sun, the UV rays are still hitting you from every angle. Apply sunscreen every morning, and reapply if you are spending time outside. 

To maximise your efforts, book a facial every 4 to 6 weeks with your favourite Somatologist, and they will perform a custom treatment for your face and advise you on how to best care for your skin at home. Now you’re ready to look your best and face the day. 

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