Lack of humidity, dry heat and sudden temperature drops can be brutal on your skin. Winter’s biggest sin is to zap your skin of essential moisture, leading to scaliness, dryness, irritation and even flaking. It doesn’t help that you are forced to take hot showers, which further strips your skin of nourishment. Your best defence against the harsh weather is to keep your winter skincare routine updated at all times. And we are talking barrier-fortifying, hydrating and protective ingredients that will shield your skin from the cold.
Here are five ingredients to add to your winter skincare routine ASAP!
Ceramides are naturally found in your skin; they function as building blocks for your moisture barrier and help hold on to hydration. The ceramide levels in your skin deplete faster in the winter, so replacing them with a thick cream is essential. Label check for ceramide NP/ EOP/ NS/AP, phytosphingosine and sphingosine. A mix of different forms of ceramides will help enrich the lost lipids from your skin.
Squalene makes up 10-15% of your skin’s natural oils and sebum. It is a potent antioxidant and helps lubricate and hydrate your skin to keep it protected from damage. Opt for the thicker squalene variant for dry skin type; it is even effective on eczema. For acne-prone, oily and combination skin, label check for the lighter squalane. Both ingredients are effective emollients and can help keep your skin protected in the winter.
3. Shea Butter
Now that you’ve taken care of hydration let’s move on to the pumping! Found in many skincare, lip care and hair care products, shea butter in its natural form is an important added to any skincare routine. It is rich in fatty acids and vitamins that deeply nourish your skin and make it look plumper. It is incredibly gentle and rarely triggers allergies from use. Plus, you can DIY your own winter cream and body butter with this ingredient, just add a few drops of lavender oil, and you are good to go!
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Petrolatum, popularly known as petroleum jelly, is an occlusive agent that works a physical barrier on your skin, preventing moisture loss and keeping it hydrated. Unlike popular belief, when purchased from reputed sources, petroleum jelly is actually very safe to use on your skin. Vaseline can work to spot treat dry and cracked eczema patches on your face and body for winter. For oily, acne-prone skin, petrolatum-infused, gel-based products can work wonders too.
It is a commonly held misconception that winter skincare does not need to include exfoliation. Dry needs gentle exfoliation in the winter to let the dead skin cells clear and make way for nourishment from products. But chemical exfoliants like AHAs and BHAs can be too harsh for the season. Instead, look for PHAs like gluconolactone, galactose, and lactobionic acid. They are gentler and won’t irritate your already dry and sensitive winter skin.
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