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winter skin care tips from a dermatologist

Tight, dry skin, chapped cracked lip?
Hello Winter. It's here, and it's ready to wreak havoc upon our skin.

winter skin care tips from a dermatologist

So we asked Dermatologist Kathleen May Eusebio-Alpapara to give us the lowdown on how to keep your skin happily hydrated and healthy during the chilly months.



1. Keep your skin hydrated and moisturised.
Yep, there is a difference between the two. 
Skin hydration is the absorption of moisture and water from the air, while moisturising is all about trapping and locking in water, moisture and nutrients to build your skins protective barrier.

Low humidity can make your skin dry (this might explain my skin looks fricken fantastic and glowy when I visit places like Bali or Thailand!) Lack of moisture and water in your skin can lead to flaking, roughness, itchiness, and at times, stinging.

So, the best winter skincare routine should most definitely include a good moisturiser - moisturise generously and have yourself looking like a glazed doughnut! Don't put all your attention on your face; areas with relatively fewer oil glands like the arms, legs, and hands need some love too. 

Moisturisers with humectants attract moisture, so it's a must-have skincare ingredient for winter. Humectants ingredients include glycerin, hyaluronic acid and oils like argan, safflower, grapeseed and jojoba, which can lock in moisture. Natural fatty acids like linoleic and linolenic (from hemp seed) can also help repair the skin's natural barrier.

If you have dry skin, the thicker and greasier the moisturiser is, the better, especially during winter. Oils are a great add-on to your winter daily skincare routine - but remember to apply oils right after a bath or shower to lock in moisture on the skin.

2. Use a humidifier.
Aside from moisturisers, using a humidifier at home is helpful to dry skin. Keep the humidity above 30% so that more moisture can seep or be sucked in by those humectants into your skin

3. Give your lips the TLC they deserve.
Resists the temptation to rub, lick, or peel off that annoying dry skin from your lips. Drink at least 2 litres of water per day and re-apply your lip balm regularly (like all the time!) Avoid lip balms with ingredients like camphor, eucalyptus and menthol as they can cause dryness and irritation. Instead, lip balms with mild ingredients like cocoa butter, coconut or sweet almond are heaven on your lips.

4. You still need SPF.
Yep, we sound like a broken record, but it's hella important. Ultraviolet light, whether UVA or UVB, can still get through the clouds and fog, causing skin damage and photoaging. So we'll repeat it, use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least an SPF 30 on the daily.

5.Go for the dewy look. 
Good winter beauty and skincare should include make-ups that are not mattifying, so use products that can make your skin luminous. Add oils to your natural winter skincare by applying priming oils first before your foundation and make-up. Use oils with a low comedogenic rating like hemp oil for those with oily and acne-prone skin. For dry skin, oils with a high comedogenic rating, like coconut, olive and jojoba oil, work a treat. Oils can also be used as make-up removers. Apply the oil first on your face with make-up and wipe it off before cleaning with a mild cleanser and water.

6. Wash your hands on the regular.
Yep, we've heard this for the last 12 months but for different reasons.
However, it's essential to use gentle cleansers and apply moisturisers after washing hand and using hand sanitisers. In addition, wear elbow-length water-proof gloves when doing laundry and washing dishes. Why? Because having your hands in water and detergents for an extended period can further dry and irritate the skin.

7. Pay attention to sensitive skin
If you have sensitive skin conditions like acne, rosacea, and eczema, have them treated! Seek consultation and advice from a healthcare professional on the best daily skincare regimen for your skin.



1. Scratching and rubbing.
Be gentle on your skin. Avoid anything that can further strip off your skin's natural oils and moisture.

2. Using harsh skincare products.
Strong skin care products can damage the skin's natural lipid barrier, making it dry and prone to irritation. Remove alcohol-based skincare products from your winter skincare routine especially if you have dry skin. Stay away from deodorant soaps and fragrances since they may also be potential sources of irritation. When it comes to foaming cleansers, limit its use on the underarms, groin, buttocks, and feet or on areas that can easily sweat. Stick with non-fragrant and soap-free cleansers.  

3. Long baths.
Long hot baths can cause dryness by stripping off the skin’s natural oil and moisture. Limit bath time for 5 to 10 minutes. Same goes with swimming, especially in chlorinated pools. Fragrance-free bath oils with sweet almond, apricot kernel, grape seed, olive and jojoba oil on the other hand, are your dry skin’s best friend. Remember: After bathing, do not towel off rigorously. Just pat your skin dry and apply moisturisers right away.

4. Hot Showers.
This one can be hard when you wake up and it's freezing AF when you jump outta bed. But, hot water, as well as saunas and Jacuzzis, can be harsh to the skin and damage its natural lipid barrier, making it dry. So, always opt for lukewarm bath water especially in winter.

We hope these tips from our dermatologist help you and your friends keep your skin glowing this winter.