Wet hands exposed to cold, dry air can quickly dry out the skin. Completely drying your hands can be very helpful, but here are a couple of other winter skin tips...
- Stay hydrated. When it is not hot outside and when we are not moving as much, it is easy to forget to drink water. I use a quart jar as a drinking glass so I can easily measure how much water I am drinking. I try to drink 3 quarts of water a day. Hydrate yourself from the inside out by drinking plenty of water.
- Include foods rich in healthy omega-3 fatty acids in your diet to support the health of your skin (i.e. flaxseeds, wild-caught/cold-water fish, and walnuts).
- If you are not allergic to coconut and don't mind the smell, consider coconut oil as protective moisturizer. The oil is a barrier to water loss from your skin. I also find organic rose hydrosol to be very soothing to dry skin. You might apply this first and then put on the coconut oil.
- Avoid washing your hands with detergent bars. Many cleansing bars we think are soap are actually detergents and can be harsher on our skin. Try to use real soap.
- Add some moisture to the air indoors. The air can get really dry in our living spaces with the use of heating systems. Consider putting a kettle of water on top of that wood burning stove. You can also try diffuser in your home. As long as you are extremely vigilant and can remember to turn off the stove, you can put a pot of water on the stove with some citrus and herbs to help humidify the air. Just PLEASE don't leave the house and forget the stove is on!
- Your skin benefits from good circulation. Check with your healthcare providers to see if it is safe for you to use herbs such as cayenne, ginkgo, garlic, or ginger to help support your circulation. Remember-cayenne can burn mucus membranes so keep it well away from your eyes, nose and other sensitive areas.
Our skin and mucous membranes are our first barriers against infection. Keep yourself safe and healthy this winter by giving some extra love and attention to your skin.