How to Keep Skin Healthy During November and Beyond
This time of year introduces a number of fun, new skin issues to us fellas. The cold air can bring with it dry, chapped skin, and for those participating in Movember, you might also be battling itchiness, irritation and acne.
To prevent the winter chap and keep the skin beneath the beard or mustache breakout free, there are a few quick and simple maintenance techniques you can incorporate into your daily regimen.
Combating winter issues
Let’s first tackle the winter chap. When it comes to dry skin there are intrinsic (internal) and extrinsic (external) causes. Intrinsic causes of dry skin include genetic factors, medications, antihistamines and antibiotics, illness, and aging. Extrinsic include things like weather, lifestyle and skin care products. We’ve all experienced how uncomfortable dry skin can be, and for those with facial hair you might have also been greeted with dead skin flakes or dandruff in your beards and mustaches.
This time of year the environment is a primary contributor to dry skin.This is because cold air is denser than warm air, leaving little room for water vapor. Dryer air leads to dryer skin conditions. Keep in mind however, the sun is one of the top contributors to dry skin, so always slather on a good sun block even during winter months.
Alcohol-based and certain clay-based skin care products can also add to your dry skin. Surprisingly so too can under cleansing and over moisturizing. This may seem counterproductive, but if you don’t properly cleanse, the moisturizer sits on the surface unable to penetrate the skin.
For those adding a new stache or beard to the mix you know those first few days of beard growth can cause quite the ruckus – irritating the skin, causing itch and possibly some initial breakouts. With this in mind, it might be time to change up your routine – beard or no beard.
A new winter routine
To combat or improve the flaky conditions start with a more gentle cleanser with moisturizing ingredients like shea butter and cleansing agents, like sodium chloride, that don’t strip away natural oils. Follow with a skin strengthening toner to keep skin nourished and hydrated.
Also be sure you are not under cleansing and over moisturizing. You might also use a granular scrub with bits of bamboo and jojoba beads to slough off dead skin and prevent ingrown hairs.
Morning and night use a non-greasy antioxidant and moisturizing formula to fight free radicals and hydrate. Look for ingredients like D2O, soybean protein, D-boldine, and L-glutathione and superoxide dismutase (powerful antioxidants). For shaving be sure to use a shaving gel to help keep shaved skin hydrated. And always protect with a good physical block like zinc.