Cold, windy and wet conditions outside and drying, furnace-fueled heat indoors can make for brutal conditions. Your skin is often left either dry, cracked and flaky, or painfully tight, splotchy and burning. Good times, right? The only defense is to keep your skin as healthy and hydrated as possible. Stock up on these tried-and-true products to get some cold comfort.
Use an exfoliating bar of soap (or simply a wash cloth) to gently scrub your skin all over. This helps with itchiness, stimulates your circulation and boosts your body's natural oils. For a flaky scalp, use a tea tree-infused shampoo that will also soften dry, damaged hair.
Baxter of California exfoliating body bar, $16 and Clear shampoo, $5
It's the only part of your body that's always exposed. Protect it with a face oil that acts like your natural lipid barrier, locking in moisture. And a vitamin-rich face lotion like Buckler's has unique calming properties that will reduce redness and soothe windburned or post-shave skin.
Buckler's daily face repair, $42 and Jack Black nourishing oil, $32
You many not need this. But if you're really dry, consider a body lotion. You'll need a lot to lube up your whole body though, so save your dough with a large bottle of simple cocoa butter. It has a light scent and absorbs quickly, so don't worry about moisturizing before work.
Queen Helene cocoa butter, $3
It's not really a hand lotion, but this oatmeal-based cream is the best we've found. It's fragrance-free and won't leave your hands greasy or slippery, so keep a tube near your desk and reapply a few times a day as needed.
Aveeno eczema moisturizing cream, $8
If you're not carrying some lip balm this time of year, you probably should be. A simple swipe keeps your lips smooth and crack-free. This one moisturizes with shea butter, has a minty taste and a matte finish that isn't glossy or sticky.
Kiehl's moisturizing lip balm, $9
Hydrate from the Inside
Nutrition can play a big factor in winter skin as well.
Take an Omega-3 supplement or snack on walnuts. Eat foods rich in vitamin A (sweet potatoes, carrots and dark, leafy greens), which strengthens skin and allows it to create new layers.