While Kate Moss will somehow manage to still look effortlessly cool in the middle of a polar vortex, the rest of us struggle with chapped lips, wind-burnt cheeks, scaly skin and a generally dull complexion. Winter skin is anything but sexy.
I’m guessing you probably buy the same skincare and stick to it, without changing it up seasonally. Am I right? Well here’s why you should mix it up for winter….
When it’s very cold, there’s less moisture in the air. Add in the wind, which blows remaining moisture away from the skin and hydration zapping central heating and your skin has no chance. Our new winter wardrobes don’t help the situation. Hold us responsible because we’ve just put up a winter knitwear post, but wool and cashmere absorb natural oils from the skin, meaning each time you pull that cashmere jumper up over your face or you wrap that woollen scarf around your neck, oil is zapped, which overtime leaves skin feeling dry.
But this doesn’t mean slather on an ultra rich cream for ‘dry skin’ (which is what Gemma thought you should do….) and hope for the best. Dry skin is not a one suits all label. Simply put, dry skin lacks oil (and is something you are born with) and dehydrated skin lacks water (and is seasonal, hormonal or diet related) and you probably find your make-up going patchy throughout the day as skin tries to suck up any moisture you put onto it. Gemma has dry skin (she was born with it) and I have winter pregnancy caused dehydrated skin.
HOW TO TELL WHAT KIND OF SKIN YOU HAVE?
-Wait two hours after cleansing and hold a square of single-ply tissue to your forehead for three seconds. Is it totally dry or are there some oily patches?
If there are some oily patches, your skin is probably ‘dehydrated’. If there are no oily patches, your skin is probably ‘dry’. To confirm, take these tests:
-Cleanse your skin and pat your face dry. Apply a piece of sellotape to your skin and press for three seconds. Remove and examine. Is more than half the tape covered in dead skin cells?
-Next, place your forefinger horizontally against your cheek and then push the skin upwards. Are fine lines forming on your cheek?
-Finally, pinch the skin on the back of your hand to create a tent-like shape. Hold for a few seconds then release. Does it take more than two seconds to return to normal?
If you answered yes to all three tests, then your skin is dry.
WHAT TO USE ON DRY SKIN:
CLEANSE: Dry skin needs a cleanser that won’t strip natural oils further. Pixi Double Cleanse is a balm that melts off every ounce of make-up and a cleansing cream formula packed with moisturising omegas.
SERUM: Feed skin goodness with Elemis Superfood Facial Oilwhich is infused with every vegetable imaginable, from broccoli to flax. We also love Clarins for their face oils, theirSantal oil is formulated especially for dry and extra skin and leaves dry, tight skin feeling better instantly. For a more purse friendly option (£5!) look at The Ordinary Squalane Serum.
MOISTURISER:It Cosmetics Confidence in a Cream zaps all the dry patches or try this – Garnier Soothing Face Balm– you can use it as a day cream or layer it up for an overnight mask. Gemma swears by it!
WHAT TO USE ON DEHYDRATED SKIN:
CLEANSE: Exfoliating flakiness allows hydrating ingredients to penetrate better. Use a cleanser with salicylic acid which will dissolve the top layer of dry skin cells. I have used Skinceuticals Blemish and Age Cleaner for years, and it’s really coming into it’s own now.
SERUM: Serums are dehydrated skins best friend. Look out for the words ‘hydra’, ‘hydrating’ and ‘hyaluronic acid’ if you suspect you are dehydrated. Chanel’s Le Lift Lotion is a “magnetic water” complex which attracts water molecules for lasting hydration or try Vichy Aqualia Serum – it’s like a wave crashing over your face instantly hydrating skin.
MOISTURISER: Dehydration brings with it a flurry of fine, crepey lines, which – don’t worry – can be reversed up, unlike deep-set wrinkles. Elemis Marine Cream leaves my feeling amazing, plump and perfectly prepped for make-up.