How to Protect Your Skin’s Moisture Barrier This Winter

By  //  November 23, 2021

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Cold weather and low humidity can wreak havoc on our skin, making it flaky and dry. Indoor heating coupled with dry air depletes the skin of its moisture, which causes itchiness, pain, and breakouts. If flakiness persists, you may start seeing open sores or cuts appear on your face.

Skin health isn’t just important to maintain your appearance. Your epidermis and dermis need to be in working order to perform essential tasks, like protecting your body from illness. 

Winter-Proof Your Skin With These 8 Tips

Don’t leave your skin out in the cold. Use the following tips to maintain your skin’s moisture.

1. Moisturize Twice Daily

Cream-based and petroleum moisturizers work well for dry, flaky skin. Pick a moisturizer free from fragrances or synthetic ingredients and apply it directly on wet skin to trap moisture.

Dry skin can also cause acne breakouts. Dermatologist-approved acne treatments, found at, can simultaneously protect your skin’s moisture barrier and unclog pores. 

2. Limit Hot Water Use and Soap

Hot water can lead to itchy skin because it saps the moisture from your body. If you have chronic dandruff, consider showering with lukewarm water or moisturizing soaps.

Even if you don’t have persistent dandruff, it’s still a good idea to use non-detergent-based cleansers. After your shower, apply thick cream and gently pat dry your skin.

3. Cleanse Your Skin

Feel free to cleanse your skin during the winter, but make sure that what you’re using has an oil base. This way, you can clean your face, feet, and hands without removing natural oils.

At the same time, don’t wash your face too much because that will also reduce oil production in your face. Apply moisturizer immediately after using your cleanser to protect your skin.

4. Use a Humidifier

Place a small humidifier beside your bed and leave enough water so it keeps working throughout the night. Wet air provides benefits to your skin, hair, and respiratory system.

Don’t reuse the water in your humidifier more than three times, as standing water will attract bacteria, mold, and fungi, which you won’t want to breathe in while you’re sleeping. 

5. Take Vitamin D Supplements

During the summer, we get natural vitamin D from the sun. During the winter, we don’t leave the house as much. On top of that, we have to wear more clothing, which blocks vitamin absorption. 

Most people need 600 IU of vitamin D daily. Take a supplement during the winter to stimulate the skin rejuvenation process and protect your body from signs of premature aging.

6. Protect Yourself From the Cold

Anytime cold winds hit your face, you’re sapping it of its moisture. Cover your face with a scarf and hat to protect it from the cold, and use petroleum-based lip balm to moisturize your lips.

If at all possible, avoid extremely cold temperatures. It’s better to take the bus or drive to a location, as skin disorders and frostbite could develop if you aren’t prepared for a cold snap.

7. Wear Sunscreen

It’s possible to develop skin cancer, even during the winter. Wear sunscreen to protect your skin’s moisture barrier and ward off UVA and UVB lights, which lead to skin damage.

Most dermatologists recommend wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher. To stay fully protected throughout the day, make sure your sunscreen is water-resistant.

8. Don’t Winter Tan

It’s a bad idea to tan in general, but using artificial sun lamps or tanning beds is an even worse way to get your vitamin D. To keep your summer glow, use self-tanners or bronzers instead. 

Most self-tanners will dry out your skin, so read the ingredients before purchasing. You may need to apply extra moisturizer throughout the day or drink more water to avoid dry skin.