How To Combat The Dryness of Winter
I’ve struggled with eczema my whole damn life.
When I was a kid, it was brutal. It didn’t matter how much lotion mom applied, I’d still go to school with flaky skin on my face, my hands, and my elbows… It was so embarrassing, and I’ve won and lost the battle with eczema flares for as long as I can remember.
I’ve tried EVERYTHING - olive oil from head to toe, taking oatmeal baths, even slathering my body up like a raw chicken in Crisco (yes, you read that right), and it still didn’t help). The eczema just leaves and comes whenever it wants—and when you also suffer from environmental allergies, it’s a double whammy, and you feel like the world is against you—literally.
But since I’ve literally tried everything in life to face ‘dry skin,’ I figure I’d share what works for me and some of my favorite products-—I feel like (on the verge of 30) I’ve finally figured it out!
FOR THE FACE:
1. Kiehl’s Creme D’Elegance Repairateur facial moisturizer
This is my all-time favorite moisturizer. My bandmate got me hip to this product, and although I swear by Origins, this product takes the cake! It’s very thick, and it actually seeps into my skin, while a lot of other moisturizers just coat the topical layer of the skin, and my skin ends up just as dry as before I applied product. This is guaranteed to moisturize the skin, and keep it moisturized! For anyone who suffers from dry skin, I highly recommend this to you, and to anyone looking for a winter or nightly moisturizer.
2. Simple ‘sensitive skin’ facial wipes wipes
These wipes are great to keep in your bag or your bathroom, whenever you need to freshen up your face. Whether you just got home from riding the subway on the evening commute, or if your office space is dry from the heating system, or if you’re looking to take off your makeup at the end of the night. I love these because they don’t disrupt my very sensitive skin, they’re gentle, and they’re not too expensive (if you shop at places like Rite Aid or Walgreens, they’re usually on sale).
3. Exfoliate: Origins’s Modern Friction ‘Nature’s Gentle Dermabrasion”
As I’ve already mentioned, I love me some Origins and have been using it consistently since high school (thanks Mom)! We tend not to notice how much build-up is producing on our faces from the products we use, as well as the environmental elements that negatively affect our skin. I like to use this exfoliant a couple times a week to get that really good clean, and I instantly notice how bright my skin is. It keeps the blackheads around my nose at bay too. Amen!
4. Kiehl’s Cactus Flower & Tibetan Ginseng Hydrating Mist Hydrating Mist
This is a new fav that I discovered at Kiehl’s (I feel like I’m cheating on Origins). I do so much flight travel, and the recycled air on the planes (eww) are so damn drying, it’s almost impossible to keep your skin hydrated. This baby is only 4.2fl oz, so you can store it in your carry on, in your bag/purse, and use it whenever you need a boost- on the plane, at work at your desk when you feel like you’ve hit the wall, or when you had an unexpected ‘sleepover’ at someone’s house, and need to exit not looking like college vibes ‘walk of shame’ headed for your nearest subway station. This mist is specifically created to hydrate the skin, as it contains Cactus Flower, which thrives in dry & high altitude conditions, while maintaining it’s moisture levels. You see why I love this product?!
5. Oils: Vitamin E, Tea Tree, Olive Oil
I honestly didn’t start using oils religiously until I had a really severe eczema breakout last year that took over my whole body. Not only did I go into a state of depression from it, but I just felt like a pariah, and that I was never going to be able to control it. After the use of ointments and steroid creams failed, I turned to natural oils. The way that my skin has literally TRANSFORMED has me really thanking mother nature for her homeopathic solutions! I’m really taking it back to the basics with this one! Vitamin E oil has many great benefits, including helping diminish the appearance of scarring, moisturizing the skin, and an overall skin protectant. Tea tree oil is what I would call a ‘healing oil.’ It literally fixes everything lol. I use it on pimples or skin flares due to allergies or on my eczema. It also is a great oil to use in a diffuser to clean the air and can help settle anxiety and allergies.
for the body
This is the lotion my parents used on me for as long as I can remember. It can be pretty pricey for lotion, but if you suffer from dry skin, this is as good as it’s going to get imo. Over the years, Eucerin has expanded their line to accommodate all types of dryness, and I really find their line of products great for skin in winter climates!
2. The Body Shop exfoliator
Exfoliating is more important than we realize. Exfoliation essentially removes dead/dry skin cells off of the surface of the skin. It improves the clarity and brightness of the skin, increases flow of blood circulation, and leaves your skin soft and shiny! I love brands like The Body Shop, a completely vegan brand, and all of their products smell ridiculously good! I exfoliate on my face a few times a week, and exfoliate my body (not as often as I should), a few times a month. Every time I do, I feel like I have renewed skin. Not to mention, it’s as soft as a baby’s bottom. Get into this glow y’all!
3. Epson Salt/Bathing salts
I recently got hip to how amazing epsom salt is. When I started working out with my trainer regularly, I had to start soaking in salt baths because my muscles were so sore (my trainer goes in on me lol). Muscle pain relief, an anti-inflammatory, aids in relieving bronchia asthma, cures headaches, neutralizes foot odor, and softening skin are some of the healing benefits of epsom salt! It’s also aromatherapeutic, especially scents like lavender and eucalyptus, which helps with anxiety and stress relief.
4. Aloe Vera (plant or gel)
This natural plant can benefit your body topically or internally. Aloe vera is what I use for burns, bites, and itchy skin patches. Sometimes I even put it in my smoothies! The gel is great for natural hairstyles, and is a base in a lot of cosmetic products! Aloe vera plants are pretty inexpensive, and once you cut a piece of it off, it seals itself and will grow back pretty quickly. Super low-maintenance! Plants also help purify the air, so just having one can be beneficial to your life!
5. Non-soap, soap
This one was a game-changer- when I stopped using ‘soap,’ all those years ago. Soap can contain chemicals that are also found in kitchen cleaning supplies, plastic toys, and host ingredients that are harmful to your hormones and women’s pH balance. Now, I’m not saying all soap is bad, cuz guys, we need to be bathing (if we can), but it’s definitely something to be mindful of, if you feel like your skin is dull, always dry, or if your skin has a weird film/texture. I noticed how much softer my skin was after I started using better soap, and noticed improved moisture retention in my skin!
How do y’all keep your skin moisturized? Hip me to some of your favorite products (your girl is low-key a product junkie)!