Save Your Complexion with These Head-to-Toe Winter Skincare Tips

Save Your Complexion with These Head-to-Toe Winter Skincare Tips

Winter is coming. As we creep towards it, we’re bracing ourselves for the seemingly inevitable winter complexion. A winter wonderland brings with it excessively dry or oily skin, chapped lips, a constant red nose, and more. But you’re not doomed to six straight months of dehydration and irritation. Before you prematurely say goodbye to your glowing skin, adopt a few of these product swaps, new routines, and treatments, you’ll get get through the winter just fine.

Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate

There’s a common misconception that exfoliating your skin during the harsh winter months can be drying and bad for skin. In reality, it actually helps slough away all dead skin cells that may make your skin even drier. Stay away from mechanical scrubs (those with little beads in them) and try a gentler chemical exfoliant with vitamin C or glycolic acid. I personally like Glossier’s Solution ($24) chemical exfoliator. Just remember to moisturize after to lock in the hydration!

Keep Hydrated

I’m not just referring to drinking water. Your skin needs to keep hydrated, especially through the drying winter weather. Try to moisturize as soon as possible after showering for maximum absorption. Always keep lip balm on you to keep those lips from getting chapped, too. If you need a little extra moisture, try using a serum containing hyaluronic acid before your moisturizer. The acid helps bring back the bounce in your skin so you look and feel refreshed.


Overnight masking creates a seal on your skin which allows any products underneath it to penetrate better. Follow a hydrating skin routine and add a hydrating sleep mask on top for an “I-woke-up-like-this” moment.

Beat the Heat

I know, I know. It’s freezing outside and all you want is a hot shower. But how about a warm one instead? Long, super hot showers dehydrate skin and trigger conditions like eczema and rosacea. The same goes for overheating your dorm room. Try cutting back on the hot showers and investing in a personal humidifier.


You don’t feel the heat and the days are dark, so why put on SPF if there’s no sun? Well, constant SPF use keeps skin looking dewy and prevents dark spots. Plus, harmful UV rays are still able to break through those gloomy winter clouds. It’s always best to lock in some SPF before moisturizing.

Erase Discoloration

Hyperpigmentation can be one of the most annoying—and visible—skin concerns. Whether it’s dark spots, acne scarring, or a constant redness from the cold weather, you have a few options. For deeper, darker spots, try using a vitamin C serum to brighten skin and reduce the appearance of the scar. For redness that won’t go away, give color-correcting a shot. Dr. Jart’s Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment ($52) diminishes redness and doesn’t have to be worn with makeup.

Handle with Care

Get rid of the guests that overstay their welcome this holiday season. Conditions like eczema and keratosis pilaris can get significantly worse over the cold winter months. Try a hydrocortisone cream (available at the drugstore) for extreme moisture, and avoid fabrics like wool that may be irritating to the skin.

Stay cozy and stay moisturized, ladies!

What are your best winter skincare tips? Mention your top ones in the comments.

Opening image by Alexina Grace