I am a water baby with a fondness for large doses of vitamin D, avocado-centric brunches and campari-colored nights. I’ll graciously accept the 'basic b!tch' designation that comes with this particular set of interests, but I’d ask you not peg me for a ‘summer person’, TYVM, for it is winter that truly has my heart.
Why? The short story: I’m not obliged to do much except eat food, be sufficiently entertained and stay warm. The long story: cosy dinner parties, board game nights, mulled wine around the fire, feeling perfectly okay about going to bed before most kids do because the sun disappears at 4pm, staying under the covers like a toasty cinnamon bun well after my last snooze alarm goes off... the list goes on.
Despite all this love for the cold, it must be said that it can be very hostile towards my skin. I know because my body is draped in the stuff. Come winter, there aren’t many skin issues that don’t befall my epidermis: dry patches, reptilian-like leg skin, psoriasis, acne breakouts dotted along my chin like palm trees along a Beverly Hills street… you name it, my body is skin-deep in it.
Attack is the best defense
As my netball coach in the 3rd grade always said, “Attack is the best defense, ladies!”. In the present day, it means creating a strong moisture barrier to fend off breakouts before they happen. Cold air holds less moisture and our skin suffers as a result. Our glands get a little too efficient at producing sebum in a futile effort to hydrate skin, which actually just leads to clogged pores and breakouts. Thanks, but no thanks, guys. Help strengthen your moisture barrier with good quality serums and products containing hyaluronic acid. Defense is also a great defense
No matter how strategic we get, sometimes we’re going to get beaten down anyway. Physically in netball, figuratively by our pimples. Preventing zits is great in theory, but things like hormones and skin-stripping winter days don’t always get the memo, and that’s where good acne-specific treatments come in. The ZitSticka KILLA patch not only uses self-dissolving microdarts to murder your under-the-surface pimples in broad daylight, they also create a barrier btw the elements (also, your grubby fingers) and your zits.
Now is the perfect chance to carry a good qual face mist around with you at all times, so that you may periodically stop and lose yourself in a hydrating cloud of acne-soothing ingredients. The Mario Badescu Facial Spray With Aloe, Cucumber and Green Tea is a great (also cheap) option for anyone with acne-prone skin.
Don’t scald yourself
It’s tempting to turn the heat up in the shower so high that your skin starts to resemble a juicy Roma tomato, but for the sake of all things dewy and moist, don’t do this. The skin is already peak dry thanks to things like central heating, and while a lot of people assume acne results from oily skin or a lack of washing, dryness is actually the perfect climate for a zit to flourish. While we’re at it, don’t scold yourself, either. Zits are a fact of life, no matter the season.
Warm your bones, chill your beans
The holiday season can be stressful. I don’t mean to stress you out even further, but stress and worry are as #triggering for your skin as logical arguments about the correlation between gun laws and mass shootings are to old, conservative politicians. (Very). Do things that help you unwind. Baths, hot yoga and meditation can all help to reduce your stress levels. Best case: this could help you to avoid stress pimples, and worst case: you won’t feel as anxious anymore.
Images: Anarosa Trotta, Bianca Galang