By Dr Barbara Kubicka
Even if the sun lingers on a bit, as soon as September is upon us the air simply feels different. Not only does it feel a bit cooler, but we also notice a certain nip in the air and hint of colder days to come in the breeze. The humidity of summer is quick to dissipate too and the air feels dryer and crisper.
The onset of autumn is the precursor to winter and our skin can be very quick to pick up on these signals. Skin that has become accustomed to a pleasant warmth and humidity can find the change in temperatures a shock, causing problems from patchy dryness to breakouts of spots and acne that defy logic. Skin can feel dry and tight and lack radiance. Lips can become chapped and dry too and the hands can also suffer from exposure to the elements.
So how do we prepare our skin for the onslaught of winter?
- Firstly, review the condition of your skin and correct any issues. If you have indulged in a bit too much sunbathing this summer, this is the time to take action, as pigmentation problems will only look worse in the winter as natural tanning fades and fine lines will tend to dry out. See our September feature on How to Reverse Sun Damage for more information.
- Secondly, don’t make the mistake of thinking that the sun is no longer an issue – a high SPF sunscreen needs to be part of your daily routine year round
- Thirdly, hydrate from within by drinking plenty of water to plump out skin cells and enable the skin’s natural metabolic processes to continue unimpaired. Alkalised water has a number of additional health benefits
- Fourthly, ensure that moisture is retained through use of a good quality moisturiser suited to your skin type. This isn’t just about a facial moisturiser, but hands and lips too. Ensure that your handbag or briefcase has a hand cream and lip balm at hand and get into the habit of reapplying – your skin will thank you for it
- Finally, exfoliate regularly. This is the best way to keep skin looking radiant as well as keeping cell renewal ticking over as your body will respond to the removal of dead skin cells by growing new ones
Once the basics are in place, professional treatments can be considered to trouble-shoot specific difficult areas. My top picks for the winter are:
- Chapped lips – Injectable lip products are not just for adding volume, they can also add moisture and help your body to retain it too. Juvederm Smile and Hydrate are two products that might be considered for treating dried out lips. The treatment adds hyaluronic acid into the skin where it naturally retains water, keeping the skin feeling hydrated
- Thread veins – Facial thread veins can become a real problem in the cold. They are not medically harmful, but are quite unsightly and can spread if untreated. These can be dealt with quickly using electrolysis, laser or injections depending on how severe the area is.
- Dry skin – A proper cosmetology facial can make a world of difference to tight, neglected skin. If time is tight, ClinicBe offers a half hour lunchtime facial; but for the ultimate treat, choose the organic facial – all carried out by a fully trained cosmetologist. Mesotherapy injections are also very helpful in nourishing the skin from within, leaving it looking younger and more radiant while chemical peels are the best choice for intense exfoliation, removing the top dead skin cells to promote cell renewal for a brighter, healthier skin
For more information visit www.clinicbe.com or call 0207 125 0521.