Being a beauty editor is pretty fun. We get to chat with a lot of experts, test tons of new products, and try out all the beauty trends that make their way onto our Tiktok feeds, all in a day’s work. However, this doesn’t mean we don’t still struggle with skin issues of our own, and it definitely doesn’t mean that we have perfect, problem-free complexions come winter. From dull and dry to red, flaky, and inflamed, we’ve certainly experienced our fair share of skincare woes when the cold weather makes its debut. But through lots of trial and error, we’ve learned that it is possible to achieve happy, healthy, and luminous (yes, luminous) skin during the winter months, you’ve just got to know where to start. So ahead, we’re revealing our tried-and-true tips for keeping your skin looking its best from head to toe this season—moving to California not required. Keep scrolling for 9 must-read winter skincare secrets that’ll get you glowing by spring. Opening image: amazon.com
Bring In The Big Guns
This might sound obvious, but one of the most important steps you can take to keep your complexion happy in the winter is amping up your arsenal of hydrating products. Swap your current moisturizer for something heavier—think creams rather than lotions or gels—and grab a hydrating mask that you can use on particularly dry days. And if you’re not already using an alcohol-free toner, now’s the time to get one. You’ll want to use it right after you cleanse, then immediately apply your serum or moisturizer to seal in all that hydration.
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Consider Swapping Cleansers
Speaking of cleansers, you might want to rethink the one you’re currently using. Anything foamy or fragranced is a recipe for disaster—aka dryness and dullness. Opt for something super mild and simple instead, like CeraVe’s Hydrating Facial Cleanser. It’s chock-full of hyaluronic acid and ceramides—both of which are top-notch ingredients when it comes to trapping in moisture and plumping lines and wrinkles—and it’ll only set you back about two oat milk lattes.
Don’t Skimp On SPF
It may be dark and dreary outside, but if there’s one thing we’ve learned here at Rank & Style HQ, it’s that the sun does. not. play. UV rays are still just as intense when the temps drop, and they can actually be even more damaging when they’re reflecting off the snow. Apply your favorite sunscreen to your face, neck, and hands, and feel free to slather it on anything else that might be exposed.
Get To Know These Ingredients
While we’ve already covered ceramides and hyaluronic acid, the following ingredients will also work wonders on your skin this winter.
Retinol. We know what you’re thinking—isn’t this notoriously drying ingredient the last thing I should be slathering on my skin in the winter? Not exactly. Vitamin A helps speed up skin cell turnover, which becomes significantly slower in the winter months. If you’re worried about irritation, apply a layer of moisturizer first as a buffer—you’ll still get the exfoliating effects, but they’ll be a little less harsh. Top 10 List Spotlight:
Vitamin C. Skin doesn’t just get dry in the winter—it gets dull, too. That’s why it’s crucial to add an extra boost of vitamin C to your routine. And the benefits go beyond just brightness—the antioxidant will also repair any sun damage from summer, treat fine lines and wrinkles, and protect the skin from further environmental damage. Top 10 List Spotlight:
CBD. Relatively new to the skincare industry, CBD has proven itself to be an excellent anti-inflammatory, which is exactly what irritated, chapped skin needs after it’s been blasted by cold winds. Top 10 List Spotlight:
Squalane. Not to be confused with squalene, squalane is the gold standard of dry skin-friendly ingredients. Because it’s so similar to sebum (AKA the oils that skin naturally secretes), it absorbs easily, maintains moisture, and prevents the complexion from becoming even more dehydrated. Top 10 List Spotlight:
Don’t Forget About The Rest Of Your Bod
We spend so much time researching the serums, face masks, and night creams we should be slathering all over our faces, so why not give the rest of our bodies that same level of love? As the temps continue to drop and suck the hydration out of our skin, body care becomes more important than ever. Invest in a dermatologist-approved body lotion, use hand cream and lip balm liberally, and take care of those cuticles while you’re at it.
Change Up Your Diet
Gut and skin health have a direct connection, which is why it’s so important to fuel your body with the right foods to achieve supple, glowing skin. Up your intake of healthy fats like walnuts, avocado, and olive oil, and—along with staying hydrated the old-fashioned way—reach for high-water content foods like fruits and greens to help hydrate the body and provide it with antioxidants.
Catch Up On Your Beauty Sleep
Listen To Your Skin
Last but not least, listen to your skin. Just like our bodies, our skin is constantly adapting to internal and external changes. Be on the lookout for signs that it’s not getting what it needs. If a product makes your skin feel dry, tight, or irritated, it’s probably best to take a break or try something new.
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