Winter has officially arrived and it’s not saying goodbye for a while. This means cuddling up by the fire, sipping spiked hot cocoa and taking steaming long showers will be our top activities this season. As much as we want to avoid the bitter cold by jumping into our hot showers, this heavenly action is doing major damage to our skin. You’ll want to read this one and dial down the heat…
I apologize for being the bearer of bad news, but those excessive hot showers you’re taking are not helping your avoidance of dry winter skin. Celebrity facialist Joanna Vargas sees firsthand a big mistake people make with their skin: showering with water that is simply too hot. “Extreme temperatures of any kind on the skin can throw off its delicate balances, and showering in too-hot water can lead to dry patches and uncomfortably dehydrated skin,” she says.
Because skin is prone to dryness during winter due to below freezing temperatures and the dry, forced-air heat we blast from central heating units, a nightly hot shower on top of it is a recipe for irritated, cracked, uncomfortable skin. My legs are itchy just thinking about it.
What You Should Be Doing...
Keep your shower under seven minutes and use a moisturizing body wash instead of soap. I recommend using Tahitian Tropics Toning Gel Cleanser by Bloom, which contains wheat protein and chamomile extract to soften the skin, as well as hydrating silk amino acids. You’ll also feel like you have escaped the cold when you rub this cleanser into your skin, as the tantalizing aromas of mango, pineapple and citrus sink into your skin.
Another tip: use lukewarm water. You shouldn’t have the temp so hot that you have to get used to it, or your skin becomes red. It will only irritate your skin further. Also use a moisturizer within three minutes after getting out of the bath or shower to lock the water into the skin.
If you can’t seem to get rid of those dry patches and redness, try one of these (or both!) DIY skin-loving recipes:
For the bath:
Boil a large pot of water with one cup of chamomile tea leaves and one cup of rosemary. Cook for fifteen minutes. Strain and add to your bath water.
After the bath:
Mix ½ cup of yogurt, ½ an avocado, ¼ honey. Leave on the skin for 20 minutes (can be used on the face as well). The yogurt and honey are very hydrating, as well as anti-inflammatories. Avocado contains lots of B vitamins and fatty acids which are essential to locking in that moisture your skin craves.