How To Transition Your Skincare From Summer To Winter
5 minutes read
As we bid summer farewell and the air gets colder and drier, there are a few skincare swaps worth making. You may notice that products you’ve loved over the hotter months don’t work well enough anymore. For instance, the gel cleanser that left your face feeling fresh all summer may dry you out, and the lightweight moisturiser that offered just enough hydration isn’t able to combat dry winter skin.
Just as we ditch t-shirts to embrace sweater weather, it may be time to rethink our skincare routines and make some changes. Here’s what you need to do.
Swap lightweight formulas for richer ones
Dr Flávia Pretti Aslanian, consultant and cosmetic dermatologist at Parkside Hospital, describes winter as the “season of dryness, sensitive skin and redness.” So, the first step is to protect against dryness with thicker skincare formulas.
“Switch from lighter and fluid moisturisers to the richer and creamy ones,” she advises. “That will help to maintain and protect the skin barrier layer, despite the low temperatures.”
And this rule doesn’t just apply to your choice of moisturiser. You also need to:
Revaluate your cleansing routine
Switch lightweight cleansers for richer, oil or balm-based ones – especially if you have dry skin. Think of your cleansing step as another opportunity to inject moisture into the skin.
Try: The Total Cleansing Oil, £24, has a luxurious oil texture that emulsifies on contact with water and dissolves even the most long-wearing make-up. Ingredients like organic sunflower oil, golden gentian, and lemon balm in the formula soothe and moisturise.
This transition period is also an excellent time to reassess your morning cleanser. As your skin may start feeling more parched in the mornings, use ultra-light, creamy cleansers that don’t strip the skin of its natural oils.
Choose hydrating ingredients
“Daily use of moisturisers with hydrating ingredients will help retain water in your skin,” says Pretti Aslanian. Her list of moisturising ingredients to incorporate into your routine includes ceramides, hyaluronic acid, dimethicone, glycerine, propylene glycol, proteins, urea, and lanolin, along with some oils and petrolatum.
Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager, recommends ingredients like blue orchid and leaf of life (also known as kalanchoe pinnata) to hydrate and shea butter to comfort and soothe the skin.
Protect your lips
There’s a chance you may have ditched your heavy-duty lip balm in favour of something lighter during the summer months. But if you’re prone to dry lips in winter, load up on moisture before your lips begin to get chapped.
We rely on the Hydra-Essentiel Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm, £21, for all our lip hydration needs. It’s got blue lotus wax that gives it a rich consistency, so it hydrates and protects the lips.
If you’ve let your exfoliation routine slip, now’s the time to pick it back up. Scrub away dry patches on the face and body using appropriate exfoliators.
Try: The Beauty Flash Peel, £38, is a fantastic facial exfoliator you can use a couple of times a week. It’s got 5.7% glycolic acid (AHA) and 0.5% salicylic acid (BHA) to gently but effectively refine the skin’s surface.
Not only will exfoliation keep the surface of your skin smooth, but as McHale points out, “exfoliating any dryness away will make the products you apply on top (like moisturisers or treatments) work better.”
Don’t forget your SPF
McHale warns against skipping sunscreen during the winter months. The winter sun isn’t any kinder on your skin, and you can get sun damage even on a cloudy day. So, resist the temptation to skip sunscreen.
Look for hydrating SPF formulas that protect you from the effects of pollution like the UV PLUS [5P] Anti-Pollution, £33, which protects your skin from UV rays and also against five pollutants encountered in everyday life: atmospheric, indoor, pollen, blue light and photo-pollution.
Reach for oils
This is a good time to reintroduce face and body oils into your routine. McHale highly recommends the Blue Orchid Treatment Oil, £37, formulated specifically for dry and dehydrated skin.
Invest in a humidifier
As we turn our radiators on, the air in our homes will get drier. This is where humidifiers come to the rescue. They moisten the air and make it more suitable for you (fewer allergies and viruses) and your house plants. Plus, they hydrate your skin and keep it supple.
Try: The Dyson PH3A Humidify+Cool Auto React, £499.99, is the gold standard if you’re serious about your humidifiers. Along with injecting moisture into your surroundings, it also purifies and improves the air quality in your home.
“As the winter approaches, we recommend an intake of 2 litres of water daily,” says Pretti Aslanian. Also, she recommends avoiding showers that are too hot or in contact with water for prolonged periods.
Re-establish your hand care routine
Your hands need extra love around this time of the year, so it’s time to unearth your hand creams from the back of your beauty shelves.
“Wearing gloves in winter is snuggly, but rough materials can be a little harsh on hands,” says McHale. “Invest in a rich hand cream.” We like the Hand and Nail Treatment Balm, £24.50, that’s a thicker, more potent version of Clarins’ iconic hand cream. The non-sticky formula contains nourishing ingredients like shea butter and organic baobab.
Get expert advice
Some things are best left to the pros. In this case, your doctor.
“If you live in a cold country or place with limited sun exposure, ask your doctor to guide you about vitamin D supplements, in appropriate doses, during winter months, says Pretti Aslanian. “It is preventative of various diseases, including cancers, and improves general health and wellbeing.”