Healthier Me: Avoiding Dull and Dry Skin this Winter

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Cold winter weather and wind can leave your skin feeling dull, dry and flaky.

Valley News Team's, Danielle Barber, explains how a few changes to your skin care routine can help keep your skin healthy all winter long.

"In winter time, it gets cold. The humidity drops and dry air literally sucks moisture out of the skin," said dermatologist, Dr. Joanne Montgomery.

Because of this, Dr. Montgomery, said people should consider switching products from season to season.

"Everyone's going to get a little bit more dry," she said. "In terms of cleansers, if you're a person who's very dry and you're using a foaming cleanser, you may want to switch to a cream or a more hydrating cleanser. If you're more oily, you're not going to want to go quite that far, stick with your foaming cleanser and just try and moisturizer a little bit more."

To help moisturizers penetrate the skin, it's recommended to exfoliate not only your face, but your entire body.

"We recommend not skipping this step of your skin care regimen even in the winter time," Dr. Montgomery said. "It's a good idea to exfoliate the skin twice weekly. If you're a person with really dry or sensitive skin, one time per week may be enough for you."

While a hot shower or bath in the cold months may seem relaxing, it's actually not good for your skin.

"That super-hot water will really weaken and soften that natural oil layer on the top layer of the skin," added Dr. Montgomery. "If you think about doing dishes and trying to get a greasy pan clean using really hot water, it's going to do a much better job than cold, so try and avoid the hot showers."

Even though our skin is mostly covered during the winter, it's still important to protect the exposed areas with sunscreen especially for those who enjoy the outdoors.

"With the snow and the ice you're getting reflection of those UV rays back up at you and that reflection can be up to 80 percent, so you're not only getting UV radiation coming down on you, but coming up from below," Dr. Montgomery said. "So, you're getting exposure in places like underneath your chin and underneath your nose that you may not be getting at other times of the year."

Dermatologists recommend wearing SPF 30 or higher on visible areas of the skin when you're driving or outside for a lengthy amount of time.