Winter weather = dry skin. Fewer things make me feel itchy all over! Ok, so living in Atlanta all my life, I know I haven’t been subjected to super-harsh sub-zero winter weather. But I’ve spent many a-winters with cold enough weather to dry out my skin. For thirty-something years, I’ve lived through dry, itchy winter skin – some years worse than others. Along the way, I’ve learned a few tricks to keep the dry and “itch” to a minimum. (I’ve also got a few tips to naturally treat and prevent eczema, for those who deal with that.)
Frugal Tips to Beating the
Winter Weather Dry Skin:
- Pat, don’t rub. After a shower or bath, pat your skin dry – blot it, even. Rubbing with a towel will only irritate dry skin. Patting it dry -even after just a hand wash, ensures you dry hands without further irritation. Also, it leads nicely to the next tip:
- Moisurize while wet. By patting your skin dry, you leave just enough moisture in your skin, to maximize the benefits of lubing up with a good lotion. I’ve been using a tub of Cocoa Butter, since I had it leftover from both pregnancies. Moisturize right after you’ve showered, to lock in that moisture. I recommend using a good lotion ALL over, wherever you get dry and itchy these winter months, and apply at least once a day – but always make sure to apply a coat right after a shower, when your skin is still damp. Also, my fantastic Active Mamas suggest coconut oil. One even puts a little in her child’s bath water.
- KISS it in the shower. Yep, Keep It Short, Silly. Contrary to what you may think, showers will strip your skin of moisture – especially long and hot ones. So, keep them short, and leave the hot and steamy to your favorite soap opera. 😉 In fact, you may wish to move to an every-other-day plan, if your skin gets especially bad.
- Lube and Gloves, baby. My hands take a beating this time of year, and it’s all I can do to prevent them from cracking and bleeding sometimes. Between excessive hand washing -which is a must with little ones and the germ factories they call preschool!- and the sheer cold dry weather, I have to keep a careful watch on my hands. So, many nights, I slather them with a good lotion (this is my latest find: O’Keeffe’s Working Hands Cream) and sleep with moisturizing gloves. I found a pair of “sleep gloves” just for this purpose many years ago at Walmart for $3. You can also utilize disposable latex gloves, if you have easy access to them, but I do recommend cotton gloves if you can find them.
- Honey, Keep it Cool. Although your heating system can offer relief from frigid temperatures, it will also dry out your skin. So, find a balance between keeping your home warm and keeping your skin from drying out. Wear an extra layer of clothes around the house (I sleep with two pairs of socks!), ensure your home is well-insulated, and try turning the heat down a few degrees. Do I need to tell you the energy savings this will also incur?!?
- It Ain’t the Heat, it’s the Humidity. So, one way to stay warm, even if you turn the heat down a few degrees, is to run a humidifier. It’ll also help keep your moisturized, as well.
- Saline, Saline, Over the Ocean Blue. I don’t know about you, but my schnoz gets so darn dry this time of year. I keep saline on hand at all times. Trust me on this. Also, if your nostrils feel particularly dry at night, dab just a smudge of petroleum jelly on the inside of your nostrils for some longer-lasting relief. ….if you dare…
- Water, Water, Everywhere. Hydrate from the inside out – drink plenty of water. Not only does it have a gazillion other health benefits, but it’ll help you stay hydrated; thus, adding another layer of protection to your skin. Also, try to stay away from soda and other beverages that not only don’t offer proper hydration, but may further contribute to the problem.
Do you have additional tips for beating winter weather dry skin? Please share! 🙂Keep on saving! :o)
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