As we head into autumn and the leaves lose their fresh green summer shade in favor of golden tones of red and orange, our skin begins to feel the change from warm and humid to cold and dry. Days quickly shorten and more time is spent inside as we shelter from wind and rain.
Changing Seasons Mean Changing Skin
Our skin also begins to change as it loses the golden glow of summer and it starts to feel drier and more prone to wrinkles. Studies show that the change of seasons can often cause dramatic changes in exposed skin such as cheeks and hands. Science Daily reported on one study by the British Journal of Dermatology to investigate why many people suffer from dry skin and eczema in the colder months.
In tests of 80 adults, changes were noted in the levels of breakdown of the protein flaggarin, which helps to maintain the skins barrier function. Changes were also noted with the texture of corneocytes, which are cells in the outer part of the skin’s epidermis.
Dr Jacob Thyssen of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, who was the senior author of the study said "This study shows clearly that the skin barrier is affected by climatic and seasonal changes.” He concluded that "By the use of high magnification we show that the skin cells suffer from shrinkage and therefore change their surface. The clinical message to individuals are that they should protect their skin with emollients in the winter and sunscreen in the summer.
Moisture is Key
One of the biggest contributors to skin problems in colder months is dehydration. While we may not feel that we are dehydrated, our skin quickly suffers and it is imperative that we rehydrate often, not just inside but also from the outside. Small change can make a huge difference in the look and feel of your skin:
- Choose creamy and gentle washes over foamy and clarifying with lukewarm water to protect your skin and prevent drying. Your skin type will also play a part, so experiment with products until you find one that doesn’t make your skin feel tight or itchy
- Minimize usage of clay based masks which can strip your skin of much needed oils during this time of year
- Change your moisturizer to one that is richer to counteract the drier air
- Invest in a humidifier which you can use as you work from home to maintain a skin-friendly humidity while at your desk
- Avoid harsh astringents and products containing alcohol where possible. As we enter cold and flu season, you may be using sanitizer more than usual, carry a hand moisturizer to use after sanitizing your hands
- Take care of lips with lip balms to maintain moisture and avoid chapped lips
With your skincare routine ready for autumn, all you need to do now is wrap up warm and order your favorite autumn drink, we’ll take a Pumpkin Spice Latte to go!
Wiley. (2018, March 7). Why people experience seasonal skin changes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 5, 2021 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180307095222.htm