Dry Skin Tips: 8 Ways to Moisturize Throughout the Day
It's no secret that winter skincare can get tricky, thanks to the season's lower humidity levels and the prevalence of moisture-sapping indoor heating. But dry skin can strike during any season, so it's important to know how to moisturize your face all year round.
Here are eight things you can do throughout the day—even when you're sleeping—to make moisturizing skin an automatic part of your routine.
In the Morning
Take a cold(er) shower
Long, hot showers can break down lipid barriers, which help retain moisture in skin cells. It might be too hard to face a cold shower when it's well below freezing, but luckily, even switching to a warm one will help.
Or add oil to your bath
If you just cannot fathom giving up a hot bath, at least add oil to the water. It prevents the evaporation of water from your skin and has longer staying power than body lotion. (After your bath, try cleaning your tub with baking soda to absorb some of the slickness.)
Skip toweling off
Apply moisturizer while your skin is still damp to help seal in water. To get the radiant skin of a supermodel, opt for coconut oil. Skin absorbs it quickly, which prevents that greasy finish.
All Day Long
Know your ingredients
The most effective moisturizers have a combination of emollients, which help prevent water loss from the skin, and humectants, which draw water to the skin. Look for natural emollients such as shea butter and plant oils and natural humectants such as glycerin, honey, and hyaluronic acid.
Spritz your face
Topical products such as Eau Thermale Avène's Thermal Spring Water (from $13.99) can be used throughout the day to balance pH and calm irritated skin. For a DIY version, try using spring water and a misting bottle.
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Keep water off your lips
When water evaporates, it tends to steal moisture. Use a straw when drinking water, or at least keep lip balm handy. Also avoid licking your lips, as the digestive enzymes in saliva can further chap them. Basically, treat your lips like tiny gremlins: don't get them wet.
Steer clear of direct heat
Sleeping near a source of heat feels heavenly, but direct heat causes redness and a breakdown of collagen. You'll want to stay at least 10 feet away, but the good news is you can use this as an excuse to layer on the blankets.
Instead, sleep near a humidifier
A humidifier counteracts the moisture-zapping effects of indoor heat. The cool water it mists can help fight dry skin and also soothe dry noses and throats. (If you don't have a humidifier handy, check out our buying guide.)
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