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With the Onset of Winter, It’s Time to Hit Refresh On Your Skincare Routine

With the sudden dip in mercury, your skin deserves some TLC!

Dull, dehydrated skin, dryness, and flakiness—yup, it's that time of the year again. "As we transition from monsoon to winter, the temperature and humidity drop rapidly, compelling the skin to work harder to retain proper hydration. As this seasonal transition occurs, one must enable a gradual change in their skincare routine, with tweaks to ensure the stability of our skin barrier function and reduce excess transepidermal water loss," explains Dr Janet Alexander Castelino, Founder, DermaZeal. 

Dolly Kumar, Founder, Cosmic Nutracos, adds, "Dryness and dullness are the primary skincare concerns one grapples with during winter season. Hence, to prep the skin for this harsh weather, it's essential that one is gentle and tender, eliminating certain products and adding a few extras to their skincare routine. To begin, ensure that you wash your face twice a day, followed by toning and applying a cream-based moisturiser. A Vitamin C-infused serum is a must to boost collagen production and retain moisture."

"Avoid long, hot showers that dehydrate the skin and strip it of its natural oils. Instead, bathe with lukewarm water, limiting showers to less than 5 minutes. Apply a gentle cleanser and stray away from heavily fragranced products that may further irritate the skin. Using occlusive oils such as liquid paraffin, coconut, or olive oil—half an hour before a shower—can help prevent transepidermal water loss. Emollients such as ceramides and dimethicone fill the spaces between corneocytes (skin cells) and maintain the integrity of the skin barrier, along with providing a smooth texture to your skin," informs Dr Castelino. 

She further posits, "Humectants including glycerin and hyaluronic acid are hygroscopic and absorb water from the environment. Therefore, they work best in the presence of room humidifiers. Generously apply thick and creamy water-in-oil lotions within 3 minutes of coming out of the shower on clean, damp skin. Reapply 2-3 times, daily. Use a moisturising lip balm as well, to prevent chapped lips." 

Apart from revamping your skincare routine, you must feed the skin with superfoods and drink plenty of water. According to Dolly, our water intake is typically lesser in winters as compared to the summer months. Hence, moisturising the skin is of utmost importance. "Take small sips of water even if you aren’t thirsty and massage products into your skin in an upward motion for deeper penetration into the pores," she suggests.

It's a misconception that you needn't apply sunscreen during the winter months. "You must apply sunscreen throughout the year, as our skin is exposed to UV rays most of the time, even when indoors. Plus, use body butter to avoid flakiness on the skin, leaving it soft and supple. Hand and foot creams should be a part of your winter care regime as well, to beat the harshness of the cold weather. Apart from this, apply a face mask every week and exfoliate your skin twice a week to get rid of dullness and dryness," she adds.