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How to treat skin during winter

1 Jan 2021
by O. Ten

Having been receiving many requests from our customers for a piece of advice on good winter skincare products, we decided it’s best if we share our personal tips for treating skin in winter. First, we are going to explain what causes dehydrated skin in winter from a scientific point of view. It will give you an overview of moisturizing ingredients to look for in products and provide interesting dermatological concepts to look up in your own time. In the second part we will give you winter skincare tips from LW team members.

What Happens To Our Skin In Winter? Scientific Insight

The stepstone of our skin’s hydration is known as its Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF). NMF is simply a set of compounds our skin contains that enables it to retain moisture, creating a barrier to resist environmental stressors. Filaggrin is a protein our skin contains that allows NFM to be produced. Colder winter temperatures and dry air (that is a result of the inside heating) shrink the cells of skin’s outermost layers, which encourages Filaggrin levels to diminish. What happens next is the degradation of our skin’s elasticity and its protective moisture barrier.

NMF is simply a set of ingredients that work together. It is possible to recover it when topically using skincare products that contain ingredients from NMF composition group, some of which are amino acids, PCA, lactic acid (AHA), sugars and peptides. It is also possible to help your skin out by using products that contain a set of ingredients serving similar functions as NMF group. A star list of of these ingredients would include humectants such as Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerin, Honey and Aloe Vera, and occlusives and emollients such as Jojoba oil, Castor oil, Cocoa butter, Sea-buckthorn Oil, Allantoin, Lecithin and Ceramides (also known as lipid fat). Note that this is not a definitive list.

We hope that this scientific overview will navigate you in choosing the winter products by looking at the ingredient list! Search for ingredients underlined in this section. :)

Winter recommendations from our LW Team

1. Cleansing

Use cleansing products that will not dry out your skin. Low winter temperatures and dry air is already enough stress for your skin. Try to select moisturizing cleansing products according to your skin type that doesn't strip your skin of its natural oils. We also recommend to stay away from cleansers that contain harmful ingredients such as parabens, artificial fragrances and dyes. We promise that you will notice the difference after starting to use cleansers with milder formulations!

Cosrx Good Morning Cleansing GelKlairs Gentle Black Deep Cleansing Oil


2. Exfoliation 

Exfoliate, to avoid flaking skin and to improve the general effectiveness of your skin care products. Exfoliation is essential, yet at the same time you do not want to overdo it! Regular exfoliation keeps the skin texture smooth and makes it easier for your moisturizing products to penetrate your skin and do their job. We suggest to exfoliate 2-3 times a week using products that additionally contain calming and hydrating ingredients (ideally, also ingredients highlighted in the first section). Technically, you can go for an exfoliation product that works best for you and your skin type. If you want to be as efficient as possible, you may want to take a look at sleeping masks that contain chemical exfoliants to wake up with smooth plump skin.

Be aware of how sensitive your skin is when choosing an exfoliation product, and make sure to use sun protection, as chemical exfoliants make your skin more sensitive to sun damage!

Benton PHA Peeling GelNeogen Dermalogy Real Cica Pad
3. Toning

Toning can be a dealbreaker! We are about to give you a tip that each member of our team noted to work this winter! We often see people underestimating the importance of a toner in their routines, yet it can really make a difference and so it did for each of us. We suggest selecting a toner with a more dense, sticky consistency that features star hydrating ingredients such as Hyaluronic Acid.

The Banila Co Dear Hydration Toner contains trehalose, hyaluronic acid and glycerine, three star ingredients that effortlessly hydrate your skin so it feels supple and prepared for the rest of your routine. If you crave some more hydration during the day, just spritz some lovely smelling Bulgarian Rose Water Mist Serum on your skin! This multifunctional toner works as a serum and as a mist as well, and contains 88% bulgarian rose water.

Heimish Bulgarian Rose Water Mist SerumBanila Co Dear Hydration Toner


4. Ampoules

Ampoules are great concentrated treatments and they are exactly what your skin needs in winter or during any other season when you feel like your skin has been feeling down. Right now I'm a big fan of the Time Revolution Artemisia Ampoule, that makes my skin feel so soft and nourished and doesn't sensitive the easily irritated parts of my skin. It has 70% Artemisia-extract, a traditional Chinese medicinal herb with calming, antiviral properties.

Missha Time Revolution Artemisia AmpouleCosRX Hydrium Centella Aqua Soothing Ampoule


5. Masking

We definitely recommend to use masks more often during colder seasons. Since I have a combination skin and keep fighting clogged pores and dryness at the same time, I try to combine pore care masks (2 times a week) with more nourishing and calming masks (2-3 times a week).

Esfolio Green Tea Essence Mask SheetPyunkang Yul Acne Dressing Mask Pack


6. Moisturizer

Usually, when I reach the moisturizing step of my routine, my skin already feels great after the ampoule, and that is the feeling you want to achieve. The Sleeping Pack by Purito is actually meant to be used as a night mask, so you can rinse it off in the morning. But I love using it as a super hydrating night cream, personally. It has Centella Extracts, Madecassoside, Asiaticoside plus Madecassic Acid, so you're literally getting all the goodness that Centella Asiativa has to give. Some days, I reach for my Pomegranate Nutri-Moisturizing Cream by Frudia. It contains 63% pomegranate extract, an ingredient that's naturally abundant in Vitamin C!

Purito Dermide Cica Barrier Sleeping PackPyunkang Yul OilFrudia Pomegranate Nutri-Moisturizing Cream

Trick: if you want to treat your skin to a more nourishing moisturizer at night, just add a couple of drops of your favourite facial oil to your moisturizer! I use a 100% natural Pyunkang Yul Oil that features ingredients such as Jojoba and Sunflower oils, Shea Butter as well as soothing oils of Rosemary, Lavender and Bergamot.


7. Sunscreen

Last but not least! Never forget to use sunscreen, even during the gloomy winter in the Netherlands. Although you cannot get sunburned through the thick clouds, your skin is still exposed to UV radiation that takes next to nothing to strip skin of its moisture and essential oils. If possible, go for more hydrating sunscreens such as Troiareuke ACSEN UV Protector Essence (for sensitive/acne prone/oily skin) and Missha All-Around Safe Block Essence Sun Milk (for combination or dry skin).

Troiareuke Acsen UV Protector EssenceMissha All-Around Safe Block Essence Sun Milk


We hope that this blog post gave you new insights about how to boost your skincare routine this winter and that you will not hesitate to share your own tips below this post!

Till the next week,

LW Team <3

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