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February - March 2007


Health

The Secret of a Perfect Skin in Winter

by Shashi Gossain B.Sc (Hons), MRPS, Member


Why does winter cause so many people to develop dry skin?

Frigid air, drying indoor heat and wind takes away the moisture from the skin, and the skins lipid capacity isnít enough to provide protection.

The outermost layer on the skin, called Stratum corneum is weakened, leading to a loss of moisture. This can also lead to dry, itchy, cracked and sore skin.

A rigid regime needs to be followed in winter in order to keep your skin looking and feeling healthy and radiant.

1.Use sunscreen: even dim daylight causes skin damage, which diminishes its ability to hold on to moisture!

2.Use a Rich Moisturiser:an ideal winter moisturiser should have antioxidants, water binding agents and anti-inflammatory ingredients to ward off the environmental causes of dry skin. Moisturisers should be used at least two or three times a day.

3.Avoid soap:Never use a harsh cleanser, as it strips the skin of the any natural oils.Use cleansers with added oils.

4.Avoid soaking in the bath or long showers: Too much water is bad for your skin, as water breaks down the oils on the skinís surface.

5.Dry skin gently after taking a quick shower:Do not rub the skin too much.

6.After bathing, apply a Moisturiser immediately:Skin is at its most vulnerable state, leading to oil loss.

7.Use a humidifier in the house:Low humidity causes dry skin. Moisture is added back by the humidifier.If possible, have at least one humidifier in each room.

8.Do not use oils in the bath:It can be dangerous as the bath tub gets slippery. Bath oils also encourage you to soak for longer, which is not good for the skin. It is best to apply oil on the body after the bath.

9.Exfoliate: A good AHA exfoliant helps cell turnover! The new, smoother cells can protect the skin, and prevents further dryness.

10.Use Olive Oil: Massage a few drops of Olive Oil over the dryer areas.Olive oil is an excellent emollient, rich in antioxidants, and any excess is easily absorbed.

By following the tips above, you will have a beautiful, healthy skin even in the bleakest of Winters!

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