Dry, cold, winter weather increases the surface level dryness of the skin. The temptation to increase exfoliation becomes greater….you just want to get rid of all that dryness!!!!
For most people, this is a time to reduce the intensity of your exfoliating regimen….not increase it. Many have tried increasing exfoliation intensity only to find out that their skin becomes way more sensitive, red and irritated….
Why does this happen?
Dry, cold Winter air will weaken the barrier function of your skin.
The outer-most layer becomes exceptionally dry and scaly. Your lipid
production (aka oil) is not sufficient to cover this extra dry outer
layer (unless you are a very oily skin type). Heated homes and offices will increase water loss from your skin into the dry atmosphere around you. Your skin dehydrates. Your skin flakes. Your skin looks dull. Your skin becomes easily irritated and feels uncomfortable and sensitive.
What should you do?
1. Never succumb to the temptation to use a scrub – uuuuuugh – the worst thing for everyones’ skin – even when it is strong…
2. Reduce the intensity of the exfoliant you are using….by reducing the pH and/or the quantity of Alpha (glycolic) and/or Beta (salicylic) Hydroxy Acid content in the exfoliating serum.
So, start using the 3.5pH Age Limit in place of the 3.2pH Power Peel, and if you are using Age Limit now, replace it with the 3.9pH Clear Skin Ultra Gel. You can also reduce the % of AHA in the product as well as raising the pH level by using the Gentle + Exfoliate Gel. Keep the frequency of use the same with the milder exfoliation gel. People using very strong (high % (>10%) and low pH (<3.5pH)) exfoliators should reduce frequency by 1 or 2 days per week.
For some people the best winter solution is to use a gentle enzyme exfoliator – and I have an amazing enzyme exfoliation gel in the works…it will eat up that dry skin and not leave your skin sensitive nor irritated…. Stay tuned, it will be available within the next few months.
The right level of exfoliation is critical at all times, but especially in Winter. It is never OK to merely add thick greasy moisturizers to your skin to compensate for Winter dry skin. Do the right thing, use the right products, and you will say goodbye to uncomfortable, unpleasant, irritated Winter skin!
The information provided here is not meant to diagnose or cure any medical conditions. Please see your doctor or a trained medical professional should you have any concerns.