Tuesday 2 November 2021

Winter Skin Saviours

Winter brings strong winds, low humidity levels, and a bitter chill, causing skin to quickly become dry, dull, irritated, and damaged. Even taking shelter in the warm and dry indoors can makes things worse, as sudden temperature fluctuations can cause dry and dehydrated skin.

So, when it comes to surviving this cold season, a good skincare routine is essential. You'll need skincare products that protect, hydrate, brighten, and repair. Here are some of my favourites:

Face masks are perfect for the winter months as they provide instant hydration and nourishment when skin needs it most. One of my favourite masks of the moment is the Dr. Dennis Gross Hyaluronic Marine Hydrating Modeling Mask (£47 cultbeauty.com). Interestingly, this mask starts life as a separated gel and powder. You have to mix the two together to get the finish product - a uniquely textured mask that dries like rubber to peel of effortlessly. The Hyaluronic Marine Hydrating Modeling Mask is a skin-reviver that boasts an impressive cocktail of professional-grade algin and hyaluronic acid, to improve the skin’s capacity to hold water, essential minerals, and microelements. There are four masks per pack, but one treatment alone delivers brighter, firmer, and more supple skin.

For those with a smaller budget, I recommend the Garnier SkinActive Niacinamide Detox Ampoule Sheet Mask (£3.99 Boots). This single-use sheet mask balances and hydrates the skin, reducing the look of fine lines and wrinkles, and perking up tired looking skin. Enriched with 2% niacinamide and kale extract, this affordable mask is also able to restore radiance in just five minutes. 

Cleansers are crucial to a good skincare routine, however you're best using gentle cleansers during the winter months. Skin can quickly become irritated and dry, so look to products that cleanse and calm the skin. The Sioris Cleanse Me Softly Milk Cleanser (£25 kosamebeauty.com) is a great choice. It is a gentle milky cleanser that performs best for those with sensitive and dehydrated skin. Its nourishing and creamy texture applies easily and rinses off like a dream. It effectively removes light makeup, dirt, and impurities, leaving skin well cleansed and super soft. It is formulated with antioxidant-rich macadamia nut oil and soothing aloe barbadensis leaf extract, as well as broccoli extract to protect skin from free radical damage.

As for a toner, I recommend a mist as it can be used quickly and effortlessly, whenever your skin is in distress. I recommend the Biossance Hyaluronic Toning Mist (£25 cultbeauty.co.uk), which is designed to plump the skin and deliver moisturising protection throughout the day. It is formulated with two types of hyaluronic acid to help lock in moisture and minimise the appearance of fine lines. However, the signature ingredient in its formulation is squalane. This popular ingredient is able to mimics the body’s natural oils to help deliver lightweight moisture and prevent dry skin. The Biossance Hyaluronic Toning Mist is also great at setting and refreshing makeup.

My next suggestion isn't so much a cleanser but a product designed to be used after cleansing and before toning. It is the Clinisoothe+ Skin Purifier (£19.95 Boots), a powerful antimicrobial solution that reduces redness, soothes skin, combats breakouts, actively protects the skin from irritation. Its formula uses advanced hypochlorous technology which soothes and calms the skin on the face and body, balancing redness and promoting rapid skin recovery. This gentle formula has a skin neutral pH and can be applied anywhere on the face or body where breakouts, irritation, and redness occur. In addition to being a winter skin saviour, the Skin Purifier is incredibly good at treating acne. If you have time, check out the brand's before and after images... they're very impressive.

Now a good winter skincare routine will need a serum. After all, serums are the most effective products for tackling skin concerns, as they can deeply penetrate the skin. Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops (£31 cultbeauty.co.uk) is a winter must. Designed to deliver a glow instantly and over time, this niacinamide-infused serum is a one-of-a-kind highlighting skincare and makeup hybrid that visibly brightens skin. The hero ingredient in this serum is - you guessed it - watermelon. With protective vitamins A and C, skin-plumping amino acids, and the phytonutrient lycopene, watermelon is able to moisturise, plump, and soothe the skin, as well as reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Niacinamide is included to even out skin tone, reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and dark spots, soothe skin, brightens dullness, and support the skin barrier.

Another great serum for the cold season is the Pharmaceris A A&E Sensilix Serum Concentrate (£23 feelunique.com). Containing an impressive 8% vitamin E, this skin saviour is able to help prevent micro-irritation caused by the winter weather and other environmental aggressors. In addition to vitamin E, this water-based serum contains squalane, almond oil, hempseed oil, and rapeseed oil to hydrate and protect the skin. A gentle concentration of vitamin A is also included to slow down the physiological ageing process.

Now locking-in moisture is crucial during winter and no product does this better than a good moisturising face cream. I recommend the much-loved SkinCeuticals Emollience (£70 feelunique.com). It is a super-rich moisturiser that instantly comforts the skin. The water-based moisturiser boasts a gentle formula that includes algae extracts, grape seed oil, rose hip oil, and macadamia nut oil. These antioxidant-rich ingredients work together to hydrate the skin, maintain hydration, and protect skin from free radical damage. The cream is best suited to those with dry or sensitive skin, however if you live in very cold climates or have a ski season approaching, this will work perfectly for you too!

A slightly more affordable alternative is the Kiehl's Ultra Facial Day Cream (£28 feelunique.com). First launched 15 years ago, this face cream still holds it much-deserved cult status. It is celebrated for its lightweight creamy texture, as well as the 24-hours of hydration it delivers to the skin. Formulated with glacial glycoprotein and olive-derived squalane, this non-greasy face cream promotes softer, smoother, and visibly healthier skin. I love it! 

The delicate eye area needs particular attention during the cold winter months as it is more prone to damage. So to keep area as hydrated and protected as possible, you'll need a rich eye cream. My favourite is the Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture for Eyes (£56 feelunique.com). This pocket-sized powerhouse features hyaluronic acid and algae extract to hydrate and seal in moisture, helping to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It provides immediate and long-term relief from dry skin beneath the eyes and helps restore smoothness.

For those on a budget, I recommend the Fade Out Advanced Brightening Eye Repair Night Cream (£9.99 lookfantastic.com). This nourishing eye treatment features synthetic peptide haloxyl to calm inflammation, niacinamide to brighten the skin, and sodium lactate to lock in moisture. Hyalusphere, a smaller molecular derivative of hyaluronic acid, is also included to deeply hydrate the skin, helping reduce the appearance of fine lines.

It's also important to pay special attention to your lips. Much like the eye area, the lip area is sensitive and delicate. In fact, it is the most at risk of damage during the winter season. You can never go wrong with having a good lip balm close to hand and my favourite is the Oskia Cupid's Bow Lip Balm (£25 niche-beauty.com). This super lightweight balm is formulated with avocado oil and shea butter to nourish, soothe, and protect the lips, keeping them healthy and velvety soft. The luxe balm, which is flavoured with vanilla and fresh mint, also features natural mineral pink pigments to add a pretty subtle shimmer to your lips.

Finally, we have bodycare, an area often neglected in the skincare stakes. My newest bodycare favourite is the Vaseline Instant Dry Skin Rescue Body Lotion (£7.50 Boots). It may be a budget beauty buy, but this lightweight cream is great at relieving and repairing extremely dry skin in just a few hours. Its formula includes hyaluronic acid to retain hydration, glycerin to deliver moisture, Vaseline jelly to lock in moisture, and pro-lipids to strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier. It provides a fast fix for dryness and helps to calm sensitive and irritated skin instantly.

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