Everything You Need To Know About Avoiding Dry Skin This Winter

by Jacquelyn Brooks

If you live in place that experiences intense winters, you know it isn't the best season for your skin.

When you're surrounded by dry air, your skin can be left flaky and irritated.

Although some solutions to heal your dry skin are obvious, like moisturizing, we wanted to offer you some simple adjustments that will keep your skin smooth and hydrated all winter long.

Here are nine ways to take care of your skin for the next few months:

1. Invest in a humidifier.

Indoor heating systems naturally take humidity out of the air and cause it to be drier overall.

This takes a toll on our skin, especially when we sit in artificial heat and then walk outside into cold air and low humidity. It wouldn't be a bad idea to invest in a humidifier for you home.

2. Drink more water.

It may sound like a no-brainer, but a lot of us tend to skimp out on our water intake during the winter because we opt for warmer beverages like hot chocolate, cider and coffee.

Remember to drink a few glasses of water and switch a few of your warm beverages for tea.

3. Protect.

We forget to apply sunscreen to our bodies in the winter because we're generally covered up and don't spend that much time outside.

But, you should really apply SPF to anywhere your skin is exposed while you're outside (face, neck, etc.).

Make it easier by investing in a body lotion that already has SPF in it. That way, when you apply it in the morning, you're ready.

4. Wash in lukewarm water.

We're all guilty of wanting to stand in scalding hot shower water in the winter because it feels nice, but try to refrain.

Hot water will remove moisture from your skin and hair, causing it to dry out. That will only lead to cracking and irritation.

Instead, wash your body and face in lukewarm water. It may not be as instantly satisfying, but it will do wonders for your skin.

5. Apply moisturizer right after washing.

Don't wait to apply your moisturizer after you wash your face or shower. Try to apply within five minutes after washing your skin.

Also, while you're at it, pat yourself dry rather than rubbing. The rubbing motion from your towel could potentially irritate your skin and keep it from feeling soft.

6. Moisturize with the bathroom door closed.

It's also a good idea to keep your bathroom door closed until you're finished with your process of moisturizing after a shower.

It will keep the humidity in the room, allow your skin to remain damper for a little longer and help your skin absorb the moisturizer a little better.

7. Think of moisturizer as a head, shoulders, knees and toes effort.

Your knees, elbows and feet tend to get drier than other parts of your body, and they're also the most neglected.

Try putting a thick cream, like Nivea, on these areas before bed. Wear cotton gloves and socks on your hands and feet to lock in the moisture, and your skin will keep getting softer.

8. Exfoliate.

Even if your skin is a bit dry, try to exfoliate your body and face at least once a week.

Too much can damage your skin and lead to breakouts, but a few times a month in the winter will clear your skin of dead cells, which can block your pores from any moisturizers you apply.

9. Try a facial oil.

If a thick cream isn't quite getting the job done, try adding a facial oil into your winter skin care regimen.

It's a different kind of moisturizer that will leave your skin soft and smooth.

You can mix these in with your moisturizers or apply them at any part of your routine, but a good way to use them is during your last step, on top of your moisturizer and other skincare products.

This will lock in all of the products so your skin can absorb them better.