Avoiding the SAD Days of Winter

Avoiding the SAD Days of Winter

The “winter blues” –– or its more severe cousin Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) –– is a common occurrence during the cold, dark and often dreary months between fall and spring. And though we associate the winter blues with our emotional state, this frigid time of year also tends to make our skin more dull. Whether you find yourself slipping into a mild case of the doldrums, or you feel like your skin could use a revival, taking a little time out to treat yourself can go a long way to brightening up your mood and your complexion.

Quick pick-me-ups

Struggling to get your lazy bones out of bed when the outdoor temps are in the single digits and the sun is still hours away from rising? Create a morning ritual that gets you excited to start the day. Choose an energizing wash with ingredients like blue agave and yucca plant extract to invigorate the skin and give you a deep refreshing clean. Work it into the skin for at least two minutes, particularly during a warm shower, and you’ll quite literally feel your skin awaken. Follow it up with a granular scrub containing bamboo and jojoba beads, and you’ll be well on your way to a refreshed state. A strengthening toner with blue agave and green tea will deliver a cooling sensation to the skin, give you and your skin the pick-me-up it needs.

Yes, the snooze button is a harsh mistress but making time for this feel-good kickoff to the day will help ensure you’re starting off with a positive outlook (and your fresh complexion will only make it better).

Now on to that afternoon slump so many of us feel. Get outside for a quick 10-minute walk, listen to an inspiring podcast or go for a midday mini-workout to get the blood moving, stir up your endorphins, and stimulate the mind. You can also quickly freshen up the skin with cleansing pads containing menthyl and eucalyptus ––two ingredients that are sure to awaken your senses and your skin.

Take time out for ‘me time’

Many of us are consistently burning the candle at both ends, but it can feel even more overwhelming when there are fewer hours of daylight. Typically the times when we feel like we don’t have time for ourselves are the times when we need it most. Block an hour or two a week that is just for you and make it non-negotiable. Your job, your relationships, your bills and your chores will all still be there and you’ll show up happier and more productive for having taken a break.

One way to ensure you’re truly turning it all off and focusing on yourself is to schedule a facial treatment or professional shave. The benefits are twofold: your skin needs extra care during the dry, cold winter months, and the experience of being cared for can do wonders to alleviate stress and mild depressive symptoms.

Spa and salons across the country offer special services for men –– facials are not just for the ladies anymore so don’t be afraid to indulge. You’ll look and feel so good you might even forget it’s winter.

The chilly weather doesn’t have to get you down. Make a commitment to taking optimal care of yourself and your skin all year round and you can find joy in all the seasons.