Temperatures have been unseasonably warm in certain parts of the country as of late — 70 degrees on the East Coast in mid-December, anyone? — and all this weather weirdness can take a toll on your skin. We’re talking dryness, flaking, redness, acne and other assorted lovely issues. Winter weather and its accompanying nuisances, like intense indoor heating, also tend to make skin freak out. If this describes your skin, don’t fret! There are ways for you to keep your skin hydrated even when wicked weather threatens to suck the moisture out of every pore.
Drinking water is essential to keeping you healthy, but dermatologist Katie Rodan reminds us that it’s not an easy fix: “Humans aren’t like plants. Our skin doesn’t perk up when we consume water.” Real Simple explains that overall diet does indeed play a role in skin hydration and suggests eating foods that contain fatty acids, such as walnuts and salmon. Women’s Health adds that water can improve the appearance of skin and help with collagen production but that skin must be moisturized topically for optimal results. Definitely keep drinking water for your overall health, but make sure you moisturize on the outside as well.
I love a good facial oil that hydrates without turning you into a grease ball or clogging pores. Have you ever abandoned a product, only to be reunited and wonder why, oh why, you strayed for so long? This is how I feel about Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil, which is hands-down my favorite facial moisturizer. The original formula is sublime and doesn’t feel heavy at all, but if you are looking for pure argan oil that is a bit more lightweight, I also like the brand’s Argan Oil Light formula. These oils are a great value when you consider that they tame frizz as well.
While my heart belongs to Josie Maran’s Argan Oil, I occasionally flirt with other fabulous facial oils that offer moisture, protect against free radicals and improve texture, all without greasiness. Before you catch some Z’s, try treating your skin with the ultra-luxurious Caudalie Polyphenol C15 Overnight Detox Oil. Caudalie’s patented grape polyphenols are responsible for giving this oil its free-radical-fighting powers and helping skin retain hyaluronic acid. It also contains nourishing almond, lavender and grapeseed oils.
Nude ProGenius Omega Treatment Rescue Oil is lightweight and absorbs into skin in no time flat. This oil contains a host of powerful ingredients like bakuchiol, a plant-based alternative to retinol that has been clinically proven to fight the signs of aging, promoting properties of youthful skin such as firmness and elasticity.
Don’t forget to moisturize the rest of your body. Carol’s Daughter’s Body Jelly is an inexpensive, all-natural oil blend that is reminiscent of that ubiquitous jar of petroleum jelly we all grew up with but only contains a blend of oils like sweet almond and soybean. This thick salve does take a bit of time to really sink into skin. Yet it wasn’t sticky or uncomfortable when I slipped into sweats a few minutes after applying, and it makes my skin feel like buttah for hours.
When you need a good dose of moisture, try a moisturizing mask. I’m in love with the Dr. Jart+ Water Replenishment Cotton Sheet Mask, which did a phenomenal job of making my parched skin feel plump and refreshed. It’s relatively inexpensive, at under $10 a pop, and once this mask is on, it doesn’t slide off or bunch up. I was so impressed with its staying power while relaxing and reading that I actually did a downward facing dog just to test it out, and it didn’t fall off. You finish off the treatment by massaging the leftover serum, featuring witch hazel, marine collagen and chamomile flower water, into your skin for an extra hit of moisture.
For a DIY hydrating treatment, try this inexpensive, easy mask recipe from SheKnows. All you need is a banana, yogurt and honey. Basically, it’s a smoothie for your face. Also, you could probably get away with cutting the recipe in half, as the full recipe makes a lot of mask. I loved the simplicity and gentleness of this concoction, and my skin definitely felt smoother and softer afterward.
Looking for more moisturizing powerhouse products? Check out our winter beauty routine picks for multitasking moisturizers, including face creams, shave creams and more.