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The Ultimately Easy Winter Skin Care Program

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As temperatures plummet, you may notice that your face feels drier and loses some of its normal vibrancy. You aren’t imagining things—cold air, hot showers, and low humidity work in tandem to pull moisture from your skin. And that space heater humming away next to your desk doesn’t help much either.

The good news is you don’t have to wait six months to get your glow back. A few tweaks to your regimen can replenish and protect your face and body from the ravages of winter. Read on for a simple, four-step winter skin care regimen you can implement today.

Winter Skin Care Regimen

1. Exfoliate skin regularly

If you don’t exfoliate regularly, now’s a good time to start. Sloughing away dead skin cells prevents the type of buildup that dulls your complexion. A product like La Roche-Posay Ultra-Fine Scrub is a great choice for skin that’s mildly irritated by weather woes. The scrubbing particles are minuscule, so it works gently without leaving your skin red or uncomfortable.

Exfoliation has the same benefits for the rest of your skin too. Use a gentle body scrub, like OGX Smoothing Coconut + Coffee Scrub & Wash to smooth skin and leave it lightly scented.

2. A mild cleanser

Now is a great time to swap your usual cleanser for something milder and more hydrating. Avoid products that are enriched with sulfates and harsh detergents, which strip away your skin’s natural oils. Look for products made from gentle moisturizers, like oils and glycerin, which give weather-beaten skin the TLC it needs.

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil is enriched with olive and rosemary leaf oils to nourish and protect, while also removing all traces of makeup and impurities.

3. Moisturize while skin is damp

Your skin gets pretty thirsty during fall and winter. The key is to lock in moisture by applying your hydrator of choice while your skin is damp. As soon as you step out of the shower, it’s time to moisturize.

For normal and oily skin

You should upgrade your moisturizer when it gets cold, but you don’t have to use a thick cream if your skin is on the oily side. A product like Garnier SkinActive Water Rose 24H Moisture Gel relies on a lighter formula that still packs a punch to leave skin soft and refreshed.

For dry skin

If your skin tends to be more dry, look to richer emulsions that condition and replenish to maintain moisture. An affordable option is Versed Skin Soak Rich Moisture Cream.

4. Hydrate your body

An all-over moisturizing regimen will ward off random itchiness and flakiness through brisk days and nights. The right formula will hydrate deeply to ensure continuous protection even hours after application.

Vaseline Clinical Care Extremely Dry Skin Rescue
Vaseline Clinical Care Extremely Dry Skin Rescue, $5.89, Target

As tempting as it might be, don’t opt for something that smells great but doesn’t deliver in other areas—your goal is to lock in moisture. A product like Vaseline Clinical Care Extremely Dry Skin Rescue is a budget-friendly treat that your hyper-dehydrated skin will love.