Regional Winter Skin Care Tips

Whether your winters include bone chilling temperatures, dry desert winds or sun-filled beaches, here are regionally specific winter skin care tips to keep your skin healthy, hydrated and beautiful, no matter the temperature or humidity level! 

Northeast – Thick Moisturizer

Temperatures can vary from the most northern sections of Maine to the southern regions of Connecticut, but most New Englanders can expect winter temperatures to be in the low to mid 20s. 

 And, as soon as you turn the heat on indoors, the skin starts to dry out.  It doesn't matter if you heat using oil, wood or electricity, skin gets dry.


To counter this winter drying effect, suggests using thicker moisturizers equipped to help protect the skin's barrier and a kinder, gentler cleanser that hydrates, rather than harsh exfoliating or foam formulations.


You may not see as much of the sun during the next few months, but don’t ditch daily sun protection.  UVA rays — the aging and cancer-causing rays that penetrate through clouds and into the deepest layer of skin — are still kicking, all day, every day.


Fire up your humidifier. A humidifier in the bedroom adds moisture back to the air to help keep your skin hydrated.


Midwest - Serum


Experiencing a Midwest winter is like standing in an industrial deep freeze with a giant wind turbine blowing on high. But Chicago skin care professionals told you can help combat the blustery months ahead with these skin-saving techniques.


Use a nourishing and hydrating serum underneath eye and face creams. And, pure mineral makeup ensures that the moisture is locked in and skin has an extra layer of protection.


Don’t forget your hands. Get a paraffin treatment once a week with your manicure. The skin on your hands has fewer oils than most of the skin on your body. Paraffin is an oil-based wax that traps moisture in your skin.


Hydrate your skin with non-greasy coconut oil. Use it as a moisturizer and as a base in DIY lip and body scrubs.


Stay dry. If you have ever staggered through slushy snow or chiseled ice off your windshield, you know that even that even the best pair of boots and gloves won’t prevent water from sneaking in, resulting in wet feet and hands.  Winter Skin Care Tips says damp socks can irritate already winter-worn heels and feet. If your socks get damp, dry off your feet, apply moisturizer and put on a fresh pair of socks. The same goes for your hands.  If they get wet, dry them, moisturize and put on fresh dry gloves.


Southeast - Moisturizer


The trick to prepping skin in perennially humid, hot regions like the Southeast is to adjust your antiaging routine as the temperature dips. But don’t complain to your northern friends about the chilly 70 degree weather.


Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize, but use a creamy moisturizer rather than a watery one, says That way your skin stays hydrated and lovely all winter long without worry that your products will slide off your skin in the humidity.


Using toner is especially important in naturally moist environments. Most cleansers are alkaline-based and disrupt the acid balance of the skin, allowing natural hydration to escape. Use an alcohol-free toner in the morning to restore the skin's proper pH balance, and spritz your face and neck with a toner mist containing a calming ingredient, like chamomile, throughout the day.


Southwest - Humectants


Seasonal temperatures may not shift significantly in the desert, but it's still important to alter hydrating and cleansing routines as the mercury takes a slight dip. Moisturize with products containing humectants like hyaluronic acid to repair the skin's overbaked barrier, says The Best Winter Skincare - No Matter Where You Live.


Daily UV protection is also a year-round must, even indoors. Plus, antioxidant-rich creams and serums help combat the free-radical damage done by sun exposure. Remember to also hydrate from within by consuming lots of water, essential fatty acids and fish oils to reduce the appearance of wrinkles.


Pacific Northwest - Exfoliants


It may be humid, but whipping winds can give skin a sallow quality as the top layer dries out trapping the oilier lower layers. To combat this, suggests using a retinol to increase cell turnover and opt for monthly exfoliating facials. Seal the skin afterward with products containing ceramides or linoleic acid, which help create a barrier against the elements. At home use weekly calming masques containing soothing ingredients like avocado oil, green tea, and calendula help reduce signs of inflammation, while daily applications of lip balm and eye cream with sun protection repair these more sensitive, exposed areas.


West Coast – Sulfate-Free Cleansing


Winter skin care tips for those on the West Coast vary as greatly as the weather. While Southern California may not have the same change-of-season drama as other locales, says, the Santa Ana winds and cooler temperatures can leave skin cracked and parched.  Switch to a hydrating, low-sulfate or sulfate-free cleanser that still removes dirt and oil without drying and ramp up the moisturizer use. Winter also is a great time to repair summer’s sun damage with in-office procedures like chemical peels to even out the skin tone as well as weekly at-home gentle exfoliation.


San Francisco’s fog may be great for the complexion, but not everyone is lucky enough to live by the Bay. Elsewhere, a Northern California winter can bring with it chapped lips, dry skin, peeling and   redness. Similar to the winter skin care needs in the northeast, using a gentle cleanser is best when used in combination with moisturizers to Cope With Dry Skin This Winter.