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11 Steps to Healthier Winter Skin

Cold winter weather takes its toll on your skin. Dry air outside as well as heated air inside saps your skin of vital moisture. In addition, cold wind can leave skin chapped and cracked. Taking the chill off with hot showers or baths makes winter skin problems even worse.

According to world-renowned celebrity makeup artist and creator of Gustavo Skincare & Mineral Makeup, Gustavo Mottola, “You need to counteract these effects to keep skin looking youthful and smooth.” He recommends the following tips to reduce chapping, redness and itching and to keep skin healthy all winter long.

1. Wash with Lukewarm Water

Hot showers and baths may feel nice, but they actually strip natural oils from your skin, leaving it dry and irritated. When washing your face and hands, use lukewarm water, and if you can’t bear a tepid shower, then at least keep it brief and move to tip number two as quickly as you can.

2. Seal in Moisture

Replenish your skin’s moisture as soon as possible after you wash. Gustavo recommends applying lotion to damp skin to seal in moisture. “Keep a bottle of lotion near your bath or shower and at every sink, and use it liberally every time you wash,” he says.

3. Choose Moisturizer Carefully

Some moisturizers use petroleum-based ingredients that further dry your skin in the winter months. “Choose a smart formula that has natural and organic nourishing ingredients,” says Gustavo. Also, use an anti-aging serum before moisturizing to boost moisture levels and to help your skin stay hydrated.

4. Protect Your Skin

Wearing sunscreen in the winter is just as important as in the summer. Apply a zinc-oxide- or titanium dioxide-based sunscreen to your face, neck, ears, hands, and any exposed skin. Wearing a hat, scarf, and gloves also protects skin from the sun and cold.

5. Add Some Humidity

Although many of us complain about the humidity in the summer, our skin benefits from added humidity in the winter when indoor heat dries the air. Putting a humidifier in your house, particularly in your bedroom, puts moisture in the air and helps your skin stay hydrated.

6. Work from the Inside Out

Drink plenty of water in the winter to stay hydrated. Hot coffee and tea may be soothing, but the caffeinated versions have a diuretic effect, which can be dehydrating. For a warm drink that will help keep you hydrated, try decaffeinated teas and coffee or hot water with lemon. Eating foods high in water content also helps keep you hydrated.

7. Moisturize While You Sleep

Some skin tends to get drier than others. Thinner skin, such as that on our hands, feet, elbows, and knees, loses moisture faster than that on other areas of the body. Apply a rich cream or lotion to these areas and wear cotton gloves and socks to seal in the moisture while you sleep.

8. Exfoliate

Using an exfoliating mask on your face, hands, and lips will help your skin shed dead cells so moisturizers can penetrate more easily.

9. Avoid Toxins, Specifically Allergens and Irritants

“Particularly if you have eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis or very dry skin, you have to avoid allergens and irritants like parabens or phalates that may trigger a flare up. These preservatives are used in all skincare and makeup products except organic or natural product lines,” says Gustavo.

10. Nourish Your Skin

Make sure you’re getting enough vitamin C and zinc to support the healthy production of collagen and elastin. Also consider an omega-3 supplement or consume more fatty fish and flaxseed to give your skin the building blocks it needs to appear supple and smooth.

11. Change Your Cleanser

Cleansers can strip natural oils from the skin and leave it dry. “If you normally use a cleanser containing glycolic or salicylic acid, change it in the winter for a more hydrating version that contains moisturizing ingredients,” says Gustavo. “After cleansing, immediately apply a hydrating toner that contains no alcohol, an anti-aging serum and a moisturizer to seal in moisture.”

High Quality Organic Skincare

Gustavo Mottola developed his 100% natural Gustavo Skincare & Mineral Makeup line using top-grade ingredients that have breakthrough abilities. His products are organic, paraben-free, preservative-free, sulfate-free and contain no petrochemical fillers. They are vegan and have been approved by the American Cancer Society and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

Packaged in special airless containers that protect the products from contamination and degradation, the product line includes anti-aging treatments, moisturizers, facial masks, acne treatments, cleansers and toners, and mineral makeup. To explore the full product line and purchase products, visit

Analiese Kreutzer

Analiese Kreutzer

Contributing Author
Analiese Kreutzer is a contributing writer for VivaTysons, VivaReston and Le Nouveau Moi. She can be reached at