Maintaining healthy skin in the wintertime

Skies may be cloudy and temperatures low in some parts of the country, but that doesn’t mean sunscreen should be a low priority.

Frosty Footpath - winter snow

Photo credit: blmiers2)

Continuing to wear sunblock in the winter months is an important part of a healthy skin routine, say doctors at Baylor College of Medicine.

Wind and sunlight work together to cause irritation to your skin and it’s difficult to distinguish between wind burn and sun burn, so it’s a good idea to focus on overall skin care.

“Make sure to find a lotion that includes some type of sun block (SPF of 30 or higher) protection,” said Dr. John Wolf, professor and chair of dermatology at BCM. “Some people may suffer from fever blisters more often during the colder months provoked by the cold, wind and sun.”

People who suffer from severe outbreaks of fever blisters may want to talk to their doctor to see if there are prescriptions to prevent such outbreaks, Wolf said.

Dr. John Wolf

Dr. John Wolf

Chapped lips are more prevalent during colder months as well, but using a lip balm with an SPF factor of 30 or even a thick coat of zinc oxide may help keep them at bay.

During colder weather, many people will take hot showers, sit in a sauna or enjoy a hot tub. Wolf said this can actually increase dry and itchy skin. He suggests using moisturizer while still damp, before completely drying off.

What are some ways you keep your skin healthy in these cold months?

- By Graciela Gutierrez

2 thoughts on “Maintaining healthy skin in the wintertime

  1. This is really helpful. Any tips on how to keep the inside of your nostrils from getting too dry? I find that mine get so dry in the winter, it’s sometimes incredibly uncomfortable. Thanks!

  2. nasal dryness and irritation can be problematic during the winter months. Solutions to combat nasal dryness can include the use of nasal saline sprays and washes such as “ocean spray”. Moisturizing sprays that contain glycerin can also help moisten the inside of your nose. U can use these two to three times a day. Additionally, at bedtime you can place a small amount of Vaseline on the inside of your nostrils.

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