Healthy Winter Skin Tips with Dr. Dang
Winter is a time when many skin conditions can flare up. With a mixture of cold air, dry indoor heat, low humidity levels and challenging winter conditions, our skin can often become dry, flaky, irritated and red. Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to keep your skin healthy from the inside and out to combat the harsh winter conditions. It’s particularly important to choose products that are free of chemicals, fragrances and parabens and phthalates, as they can all cause irritation to the skin.
Included are my favorite products to support your skin that can be purchased directly from FullScript.
1. Moisturize your skin immediately after a shower or bath.
Any time you bathe, wash your hands or your face the rule of thumb is to moisturize within 2 minutes of washing to help lock in the moisture. Washing can strip the natural oils that we produce, so it’s important to use a thicker moisturizer to help with sealing the moisture in.
Moisturizers that work well for particularly dry skin are:
• Weleda Skin Food Ultra-Rich Cream: all of the ingredients are purposeful and transparent. By being oil-based, it can lock in moisture and keep your skin hydrated.
• Alba Botanica Very Emollient Body Lotion: packed with antioxidants and botanicals that are soothing for the skin, as well as incredibly hydrating. This is a great option for those who want to moisturize their whole body.
• Florasone cream by Nature’s Way: this is the holy grail for those experiencing itching with no relief – apply to the affected areas a few times daily to have noticeable relief.
2. Supplements to support the lipid bilayer of the skin to keep the skin nourished and healthy all winter long.
Supporting the skin from within is one of the best ways to prevent moisture loss and to keep the skin hydrated through a healthy amount of fats and nutrients.
• Nordic Naturals ProOmega 2000: This fish oil has a particularly high omega-3 value which has potent anti-inflammatory properties.
• Vitamin D + K2 Liquid by Thorne: Vitamin D plays a huge role in supporting the immune system, especially the immune system of the skin, which acts as a defense mechanism against pathogens and harsh environmental conditions.
• Vitamin E by Integrative Therapeutics: Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that fights UV-related and free radical damage.
• CollaGEN by Ortho Molecular: This formula has a blend of collagen, hyaluronic acid, and Vitamin C which have all been researched to help with skin elasticity, collagen formation, and promoting a healthy skin barrier.
3. Healthy home & lifestyle tips to support your skin all winter long
• Use a humidifier.
For those who have chronic dry skin, a humidifier can be a huge savior. It helps to moisturize the air around you, in turn reducing the amount of water loss from your skin.
• Try to reduce the heat in the house.
Turn down the thermostat whenever possible as the heat can dry the air and strip the skin of moisture and natural oils. Opt for more layers and blankets to stay cozy this season.
Even in the winter time we need to keep our bodies hydrated, which will in turn keep our skin hydrated. Optimal hydration is half of your body weight in ounces of water.
• Eat lots of antioxidant-rich and skin-supportive foods.
This is a time to eat the rainbow and indulge in healthy fats such as: salmon, olive oil, coconuts, cruciferous and root vegetables, and in-season fruits. This also means cutting back on processed foods and limiting alcohol consumption as they can exacerbate inflammation and lead to an itch-scratch cycle.
• Choose gentle and fragrance-free hand soaps, laundry detergents, dish soap, and clean hair/skincare products.
Many household items can have harmful chemicals that are irritating to the skin and can cause further irritation when the skin’s barrier is already weakened. To choose personal care items and household items, it is recommended to consult the Environmental Working Group (EWG) and Skin Deep as resources to choose non-toxic products.
• Continue to wear sunscreen throughout the winter
Even though there is less sunlight, harmful UV rays can still penetrate and weaken the skin barrier. It is important to continue with sunscreen use daily, opting for mineral-based sunscreens with titanium and zinc oxide.