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10 Winter Skin Care Tips from Washington Dermatology Center

Winter can often bring with it dry, itchy, and uncomfortable skin. For many people, this problem can extend beyond discomfort and actually cause flaking skin or even eczema. It is still possible to have beautiful skin during the winter. By following these simple steps, you can help skin retain moisture and stay healthy during the coldest days of the year.

Moisturize. Look for an oil-based moisturizer versus water-based. The oil-based moisturizers will help the skin retain more moisture. Non-clogging oils such as avocado, mineral, primrose, coconut or almond oil are all great options. Lotions that contain humectants such as glycerin are also a great option.

Protect your hands. Your hands have fewer oil glands than other parts of the body, which means it can be harder for them to retain moisture. Protect them by wearing gloves when you are outside in the cold. Also use gloves when doing dishes or household chores to minimize water and soap exposure. Use detergent free cleansers such as Cetaphil or CeraVie. This can help prevent itching and cracking.

Avoid harsh peels. They can strip essential oil from your skin. Try to stay with mild cleansers or toners. If you must use a mask or peel, find one that is hydrating and use them less often than you do during other times of the year.

Avoid super-hot showers or baths. Extremely hot water can actually cause your skin to lose moisture. Your best bet is warm water. If your skin has become itchy, try using oatmeal baths or baking soda.

Don't forget your feet. Lotions with petroleum jelly or glycerin are excellent to keep your feet moisturized. You can also use exfoliants to help remove dead skin.

Don't skip the sunscreen. Winter sun can still damage the skin. Continue to use sunscreen during the winter months.

Exfoliate. Exfoliating helps by removing dead skin and revealing newer, healthier skin. Be careful to use mild exfoliants and don't use them too often.

Use a humidifier. The winter air indoors lacks moisture. Humidifiers work to restore moisture in the air and can help prevent dry, cracking winter skin.

Remove wet clothes immediately. Wet clothes can irritate the skin and cause cracking and even sores. Wearing layers can help you stay warm and remove clothes as needed to avoid getting too hot or sweating.

See a professional. At the Washington Dermatology Center we can help you by evaluating your current skin care routine and making recommendations on everything from products you should use to how you use them. Call our office today to schedule an appointment and find out how you can enjoy radiant healthy skin this winter.

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