Keeping your skin hydrated all winter...
Since we a good few months of winter still to go (I know, sorry!), you still need to be proactive about protecting your skin from the harsh and potentially drying effects of the season. Below are a few quick ways to keep the dryness at bay…
In winter is can be tough to drink the recommended 2 litres a day of water, but since we are made up of around 65% water, it’s essential to keep your body hydrated. Dehydration can show itself in dry skin (due to lack of blood volume), headaches, muscle cramps and slower bodily functions. You can reach your daily quota with herbal teas, fruit infused waters, Vitness (packed with collagen which will help plump the skin) and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Moisturise from within!
Collagen supplementation is great for dehydrated skin and numerous scientific studies and clinical research has shown that marine collagen ingestion measurably increases the moisture levels of the skin. Hyaluronic acid, with its ability to hold 1000 times its own weight in water, is responsible for keeping skin hydrated and plump from the inside out. Supplementation in clinical trials has shown a positive effect on dry skin (see below for the science on both collagen and HA). Omega-3 fats are known to reduce inflammation and can help alleviate dry skin. Fish oil, flax seed and walnut are all great sources of omega-3.
Cool down your shower!
Hot water in the shower or bath, as tempting as it is in the cooler months, is terrible for skin. Not only does it strip valuable moisture form the skin, it also causes vasodilation, which makes conditions such as sensitive skin, rosacea and irritation worse. As you age, your skin loses the ability to shrink the capillaries as quickly, and this can result in broken capillaries on the surface of the skin and constant flushing. Turn the heat dial down and keep showers and baths shorter to minimise damage. Moisturise your face and body immediately after showing or bathing to lock in moisture.
Know your serums!
Since serum is more concentrated than a cream or lotion, it is a more effective delivery system of moisture and functional ingredients and results appear quicker. Hyaluronic Acid rich serums are great for dry skin with trans-epidermal moisture loss, and antioxidants such as vitamin C and E are great for defending skin against free radicals, stress and boosting collagen.
The emphasis here is on the word gentle. Once a week, try a cleansing balm removed with a soft muslin cloth to remove dry, flaky patches without causing irritation. Just for extra emphasis, be very gentle, too much scrubbing, rubbing and messing around just disrupts the skin’s protective acid mantle.
The science bit for those of you who love a geek out:
Effects of a nutritional supplement containing collagen peptides on skin hydration and wrinkles:
Ingested Hyaluronan moisturizes dry skin: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4110621/