Saturday, January 4, 2014

winter skin woes

Just when I thought I had escaped my bouts of dry skin that seems to happen annually right at the start of winter, my skin issued a cruel reminder that I was a fool to hold such high hopes. My seasonal dry skin has made its comeback with the tell tale symptoms of uncomfortably tight skin and the unsightly dry patches during foundation application. As this is the third year in a row I have started experiencing this, I am starting to get an idea of what techniques to implement and what products work best for me.

When my skin starts feeling uncomfortably dry, I start off first by limiting my AHA and salicylic acid use. In my normal oily conditions, my skin responds very well to the gentle acidic effects. When my skin is dry, I notice they just irritate and worsen my condition. Lately I have been only spot treating and even skipping out on using my normal picks of La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo and La Roche-Posay Mela-D Pigment Control Serum. I also have been sparingly using the Kiehl Clarity Activating toner I mentioned in my last post and instead rely solely on Thayer's Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner which is much more soothing.

I always had a feeling cleansing oils dramatically impacted the moisture content of my skin but now I have confirmation. When I visited my parents for the holidays for over a week, I went without a cleansing oil for the whole trip. Big mistake. I think that is what kick started this dry spell. I almost kissed my bottle of Boscia Cleansing Oil when I returned home.

I don't overcompensate and scrub my face raw but I do prefer mild mechanical exfoliation over chemical exfoliation when I start seeing dry patches. Physically buffing away flakes gives me no irritation and smooth results. I like using my Clarasonic Mia paired with a non drying cleanser. This year was the first time I was able to use a hydrating, cream cleanser: Pai Camellia and Rose Hydrating Cleanser. This cleanser is proving to be such a great SOS response to my skin extremes. I still rinse off with the provided muslin cloth for good measure since it isn't severely abrasive.

Okay this next part might be surprising to those who have kept up with my opinion on Avene Soothing Moisture Mask (if not see THIS post as well as THIS one). As predicted in the footnotes of my original review, this did indeed work very well in repairing my skin's moisture barrier. I still think it feels unnecessarily greasy so next time I use it I will only slather onto my dry areas (forehead, around the nose) and reserve it for overnight use so the product has time to really seep into the epidermis. It did help but I still wouldn't recommend it to the oily skinned. There has to be a better option on the market for a non-greasy yet moisturizing mask.

These steps might not be for everyone but I have found this to yield immediate results that restore my skin back to normal. If you have oily/combo skin that tends to get seasonal dryness, I hope these tips help. Dry skin be gone!

Let me tell you, I want to give perpetually dry skinned ladies and gents a monument, shrine, and/or any other beacon of a structure to commemorate how you deal with this ALL THE TIME. Although perhaps they would feel the same way about us oily skinned folks if they had to deal with a short spell of excess sebum...

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