The cold air of winter can wreak havoc on your skin. It can get dry and flaky, sometimes causing it to crack. In most instances the skin can be very itchy, if not painful.

You do not need to punish your skin any longer. By observing these 4 helpful tips, you can care for your skin in a more effective manner during the winter months.

1. Invest in a Good Humidifier for the Home

The main issue during the winter is that there is less moisture in the air. And since moisture tends to move from an area where there is greater moisture to one with less, you can expect the movement of moisture to be from the skin to the outside air.

This is what causes the skin to become dry and more prone to cracking or chapping. The good news is that you can always increase the amount of moisture inside the home. Get a good humidifier, turn it on, and watch your skin return to its normal hydration status.

2. Use Skin Care Products with Gentler Ingredients

Cleaning the skin is an everyday ritual. When using skin care products in the winter, it is best to steer clear of products that contain harsh chemicals.

Stay away from alcohol-containing skin cleansers as they tend to increase the rate of moisture evaporation. Always use products that will never strip the moisture from your skin.

In case you already have dry skin, then you might want to consider glycerine or ceramide hydration serum. These will help repair damaged skin while also improving the moisture barrier of the skin.

3. Avoid Hot Baths and Showers

People have this idea that since it is cold, having a nice hot bath should make them feel more comfortable.

Unfortunately, doing so hastens the speed of moisture evaporation from the skin. If you have to take a hot bath or shower, it is imperative that you apply moisturiser on your skin immediately. Otherwise, you will soon have drier and flakier skin.

A better alternative is to bathe or shower using warm water. The rate of moisture evaporation is not as fast as bathing or showering in hot water.

4. Increase the Frequency of Moisturising Your Skin

It goes without saying that moisturising your skin is important during the winter. What is more important is for you to increase the frequency of moisturiser application.

The dry air of winter can still “dehydrate” the skin, causing it to crack. It would be a good idea to apply a layer of oil on the skin first before putting a cream-based moisturiser.

The layer of oil will serve as a barrier against evaporative losses. You can try tea tree oil, Argan oil, or rose oil before putting on your moisturiser. Applying thicker layers of moisturiser also helps.

Caring for the skin during the winter is all about maintaining adequate moisture. Observing any or all of these 4 tips can help give your skin the tender loving care it deserves at this time of year.

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Nicola is always on the lookout for the best beauty tools and skincare products. She believes in "prevention is better than cure" so she is always trying to perfect her beauty routine to avoid premature aging. Fun fact about Nicola: She owns a lot of sunscreens as she carries a mini sunscreen in each of her handbags and backpacks.