Cheap and Simple Winter Skincare
Winter can wreak havoc on your skin: colder temperatures, wind, snow and artificial heat can all rob skin of its natural moisture. As a result, winter skin – particularly the skin on our face and hands - is more likely to be dry, irritated and red.
According to WebMD.com, it's important to make sure that your skin is appropriately shielded from the cold with gloves and scarves. You may also want to use a humidifier at night to help keep your skin soft. And, of course, you'll want to bump up your usual skincare routine. But you don't need to spend a lot of extra time and money on your skin to keep it glowing and healthy all season long.
There are plenty of heavy-duty lotions and creams out there, but natural oils, like coconut, almond or olive, are a wonderful and low-cost way to keep your skin hydrated. Natural oils nourish the skin and help keep it moist, because they won't absorb as quickly into your skin as lotions or creams would, so they provide an extra layer of protection. Any natural oil (not a cooking oil, like canola) is fantastic for moisturizing, but coconut is my personal cold-weather go-to. Coconut oil has a lighter scent than olive oil and I love the way my skin feels after I've used it. Plus, a standard 14-oz. jar of it only costs about $7, and will last me for months at a time. Massage just a bit (a little oil goes a long way) into your damp skin after a shower and you're good to go.
DIY Face Masks
Turn a snow day into a spa day! Take a quick scroll through Pinterest and you'll find tons of easy recipes for hydrating facial masks and pastes that you can make right in your own kitchen. Masks that call for avocado and yogurt are great for hydrating skin, but my personal favorite ingredient is oatmeal. An oatmeal mask is possibly the easiest one to make. There are variations, but the most basic recipe only calls for colloidal oats (oats that have been ground into a powder) and warm water. Simply mix a tablespoon or two of oats, depending on how much you need, with a couple of teaspoons of warm water until it becomes a thick paste. Spread the paste onto your face and hands and then let the mixture dry completely. Rinse it all off with warm water and pat your face dry with a towel. You can also soothe your skin from head to toe by soaking in an oatmeal bath. Draw a hot bath and add a cup of oats to the water. Spend as long as you like soaking in the mixture, then apply your favorite body lotion after you towel off.
If you don't have time to mix your own potions, head to the drugstore. You still won't have to shell out an exorbitant amount of money. Freeman makes a line of inexpensive hydrating and soothing masks for all skin types. Most 6-oz. tubes are priced around $4 and the travel sizes are about $2. Also check out store-brand masks and lotions, which often have the same ingredients as the more expensive products and work just as well.
Don't let your skin suffer this winter. It's easy and affordable to give your face and hands that extra bit of care to keep your skin moisturized and looking its best.