7 Ways to Get Your Skin Ready for Fall and Winter

With winter’s arrival comes dry, damaged skin. Here are seven tips to help keep your skin healthy this winter.

walking in snow

I know I’m in New York not because of the pretzels and bright lights but because my skin is dry. Living in San Diego has made me soft.

Summertime means humidity, and few people like humidity. But your skin loves it because humidity prevents it from drying out.

With winter’s arrival comes humidity’s departure. The air becomes cooler and drier, and your skin doesn’t react well. It becomes dry, irritated, and damaged.

Here are 7 tips for keeping your skin healthy this fall and winter:

1. Wash wisely: Use a moisturizing body wash such as Dove Body Wash made with Nutrium Moisture, 100% natural moisturizers that actually puts moisture back into your skin.

2. Take a short shower: Keep showers under 5 minutes and use warm water, as hot water removes healthy oils from your skin.

3. Go omega: Eat more foods high in omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, halibut, and flaxseed oil. Flaxseed oil is the highest in omega-3 fatty acids of all vegetable oils which helps keeps your skin soft and prevents it from drying out.

4. Rev up your vitamins: Vitamin E is critical for protecting and repairing skin. Good food sources of vitamin E include almonds, walnuts, avocados, and sunflower seeds. Vitamin C-packed berries such as blueberries and raspberries help keep collagen healthy and reduce free radicals that cause aging.

5. Cover up. Exposed skin is susceptible skin. When outdoors in the cold and wind, wear gloves, scarves, and hats to keep skin protected.

6. Stay protected: Unless it’s dark and stormy, keep using your broad spectrum sunscreen SPF 30. Just because summer’s over, doesn’t mean the sun can’t still do damage. It’s always safer to stay protected.

7. Clean house: Toss any sunscreens, lotions, or make-up that’s been damaged from the summer heat—melted foundations, clumpy mascara, funky smelling creams. It’s not worth risking a skin infection. Plus, it’s an excuse to go shopping.

Photo credit: FCC, zoetnet

Disclosure: I have been a consultant to UniLever, the company that makes Dove, since 2011. I’ve been using Dove since I was 11.

Food Friday: Eat Walnuts for Healthy, Soft Skin

Walnuts are high in Vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids, both which benefit your skin. Just 1/4 cup of walnuts provides nearly 95% of your daily omega-3 requirements.

Walnut

Having grown up in New England, I’ve always eaten walnuts. Turns out that’s been good for my skin. Walnuts are high in Vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids, both which benefit your skin. Vitamin E is a natural anti-inflammatory which can help people with inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, and acne. It’s also a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce free radicals that cause skin aging. Omega-3 fatty acids help your skin to manufacture the essential oils it needs to protect itself, so eating foods like walnuts can help keep skin looking and feeling soft and healthy.

Just 1/4 cup of walnuts provides nearly 95% of your daily omega-3 requirements. So toss walnuts into your cereal, salad, trail mix, or cooked grains. Or make this recipe for apple-maple walnut breakfast quinoa that’s healthy for your body and your skin. High in protein, fiber, and vitamins, it’ll help you look and feel good.

Apple-Maple Walnut Breakfast Quinoa
Makes 2 servings

1/2 cup dry quinoa
1 cup water
2 teaspoons butter
1 medium apple of your choice, diced with skins on
2 tablespoons chopped unsalted walnuts, or more if you’d like
1/8 teaspoon apple pie spice
A pinch of salt
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1. In a small, heavy bottomed sauce pan, bring water and quinoa to a boil for 2 minutes. Lower to a simmer and cover for about 15 minutes, or until the quinoa has absorbed the water, puffs up, and turns translucent. If the water has evaporated before the quinoa is cooked, just add a bit more water. Quinoa should maintain a slight crunch when cooked.

2. In a small skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add apples and cook 2 minutes, or until softened and lightly browned. Add walnuts, apple pie spice, and salt. Cook 1 minute more. Add to quinoa and stir.

3. Divide quinoa into two bowls, and drizzle with maple syrup. Serve hot.

Photo credit: FCC, Ioan Sameli. Recipe credit: Susan Russo