New Rules for Winter Health/Beauty
Your exercise, health, and beauty routines shouldn't end when winter begins. But you should change your routine to fit the season.
As the cold winds blow, the sunblock and conditioners go back in the medicine cabinet and we feast instead of exercise, right? Wrong! Your beauty and health routines continue -- but the rules change.
Winter Skin Care
By the time the first leaf falls, it seems like you can scratch your name on your dry skin. "Indoor heating takes the humidity out of the air and we start the scratch-itch cycle on our arms and legs," says Wendy Lewis, New York beauty consultant and author of The Lowdown on Facelifts and Other Wrinkle Remedies. Wool clothing can also leach out moisture and irritate skin. Lewis recommends a lactic acid body lotion called Amlactin, available behind the pharmacist's counter without a prescription (other good over-the-counter goos are Eucerin, Aquaphor, and Vaseline Intensive Care). "If you use lotion," she advises, "you need to use it more often, even every few hours."
Lips, especially, need emollients, Lewis says, recommending products containing shea butter.
And don't forget the sun -- "There's sun even if you're not baking in it," cautions Lewis. You still need sunblock, even in winter. Feet need extra exfoliating to keep heels from cracking. "Put on cream and then wear socks to bed once a week," she counsels. The same goes for hands (with gloves, not socks).
Other tips for cold-weather beauty:
Avoid Adding Winter Weight
Do the math -- people are bundled up in winter, their bodies camouflaged. Cakes, pies, candy, and alcohol are everywhere you go. And you may be inside more, playing Scrabble instead of beach volleyball. In addition, it gets dark earlier in winter -- people get bored or depressed and nibble. Winter was why comfort food was invented!
"Some people say our metabolisms change in winter, but I can't find too much scientific evidence of that," says Samantha Heller, MS, RD, senior clinical nutritionist at the New York University Medical Center. "I do know people think they add five to 10 pounds around the holidays and then don't take it off." Studies, however, show this is more like one pound in thinner people, more in heavier people, Heller says. "Over the years, a pound a winter adds up."