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Winter Skincare Essentials

Wintertime is in full effect, even in San Diego (on some days).

By now, you know the seasonal wardrobe shift drill: out with tanks and sundresses and in with fluffy coats, cozy hats and warm scarves. Well, it’s equally important to shift your daily skincare routine too.

Winter’s Impact on the Skin
Rainy and snowy weather can be comforting, but it can also wreak havoc on the skin. The change in humidity, the exposure to indoor heaters and the general increase in longer hot showers can leave your skin feeling dry, dull, itchy and sensitive.

When the air starts to chill, your body tries to hold in heat by narrowing the blood vessels. As a result, the outer layers of the skin become dry and dull, leading to flaking and cracking. These small cracks expose the skin nerves to air, resulting in eczema and itchy skin. And, if you transition from cold to heat quickly (like hopping in the shower after a brisk snowy walk), you can cause the veins in your face to burst as they try to contract and expand too rapidly. Ultimately, this can lead to redness and irritation.

It's winter!

TLC: Seasonal Skincare
In cold and dry conditions, the skin is less able to protect itself, leading to cracks in the outer layer of the skin, loss of hydration and inflammation. Beyond this, the skin is the barrier that keeps water inside of the body, so when dry winter conditions hit, water evaporates off your skin’s surface faster and easier, resulting in increased skin discomfort (more dryness, more itchiness).

Dry, inflamed skin is fragile, so extra TLC is needed to protect your lipid layer during this season. But there’s another consideration too when it comes to seasonal winter skincare, and that is the skin we begin the season with. Because not only can winter damage the skin, but the dry and cold conditions also make it challenging to recover from damage that may have been incurred during long hours in the hot summer sun.

So our goal in curating an intentional winter skincare lineup is two-fold: soothe and hydrate the skin against harsh winter conditions, and support repair of summer sun damage.

Here’s what you need to maintain your perfect face during the winter wonderland season.

Ingredients
These ingredients are essential in your wintertime skincare lineup. Make sure they’re a mainstay in your routine:

  • Antioxidants: decrease inflammation caused by free radicals and block abnormal pigmentation production, resulting in brighter skin.
  • Peptides: increase the production of collagen and elastin, which are responsible for firmness and elasticity in the skin and aid in the recovery process to repair damaged skin.
  • Glycerin: draw hydration toward the skin, as glycerin holds many times its weight in water.
  • Aloe Vera: soothe and support irritated, itchy skin.
  • Ceramides: repair protective skin barrier and hold on to moisture.
  • Retinol: speed up cell turnover, which helps flaky, dull skin look more vibrant and healthier.
  • Lactic Acid: exfoliates and maintains moisture levels.

Other ingredients to look out for include squalene (anti-inflammatory), niacinamide (hydrating) and linoleic acid (strengthening).

Goal #1 Soothe & Hydrate
Your winter skincare lineup should be focused on specific products that give your skin what it needs in this season. For our first goal of soothing and hydrating the skin against winter conditions, this is what you’ll need...

Soothe and Hydrate

The One: Because this single serum does so much, it’s at the top of the list for winter skincare essentials. This lightweight serum sends hydration deep into the skin, by way of hyaluronic acid, providing immediate comfort and lasting plumpness. With consistent use, The One will leave skin feeling supple and resilient due to its collagen boosting properties, through winter months and beyond. There’s a reason we call it The One Serum!

The Gold Treatment: There are those days when the skin needs a little extra boost. Maybe the skin had more exposure to cold than usual, or maybe you have a special holiday event. Whatever the reason, this is the product to have on hand for those days. This ultimate line-smoothing, collagen-stimulating sheet mask gives the skin just what it needs to be visibly radiant and deeply nourished. 24K Gold and Hydrolyzed Collagen accelerate skin renewal, strengthening the skin and providing an instant lift. Rich antioxidants nourish the skin and support a natural glow.

Enriched Biotherapy: This moisturizer tackles every winter skincare issue in one. Featuring high-performing ingredients like peptides, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide, this moisturizer is all about nourishing and repairing the skin barrier so you can keep hydration in and pollutants out. The product may also help brighten dreary winter discoloration.

Hyaluronic Plus: This serum is like a drink of fresh water during winter’s drying and windy days. It not only helps your skin retain moisture, it creates a natural barrier between your skin and the environment. And, if you’re color concerned, Hyaluronic Plus helps reduce wintertime redness. You may notice a plumping effect on the skin and softening of fine lines too. That’s because hyaluronic acid gets deep into the skin and holds 1000x its weight in water. Yes please!

Goal #2 Erase Summer Damage

And while winter comes with its own skin care challenges, it is also an amazing opportunity to heal and refresh the skin. For your rejuvenation needs, these products are a must in your lineup...

Erase Summer Damage

Perfect Change Serum: It’s a PFAM favorite because it’s consistently amazing! This is our most comprehensive anti-aging serum that visibly rejuvenates skin texture and tone, revealing a youthful glow. Perfect Change Serum contains TCA, a chemical peel ingredient rarely found in daily skincare products, that encourages resurfacing of the skin and is the preferred method for treating sun damaged and aging skin. Combine that with retinol, the most studied and proven anti-aging ingredient, and well...this product is pretty perfect. Reverse the signs of summer and get to the soft glow of healthy winter skin.

Perfect Tone Pads: An effective brightening treatment that uses botanicals and natural antioxidants to improve tone of aging, sun damaged, or hyper-pigmented skin, Perfect Tone Pads allow the skin to get brighter and glowier as the days get colder and darker. These are great for treating discoloration ranging from melasma to sun damage (and in fact these two are often related).

X5 Skin Renewal: Another daily pad, X5 focuses on resurfacing and exfoliating the skin. Made with a blend of 5 powerful acids, this product will lift deep, set-in discoloration, improve skin texture, refine pores, and soften the appearance of fine lines. When you combine the surface refining properties of this product with some of the deeply nourishing and hydrating products listed above, you will truly feel like your best and most beautiful winter self.

Next Steps

For all the adjustments we have to make to protect our skin during the winter, there’s really nothing like the soft, plump, healthy glow we can achieve in the colder months. Here’s a few more steps to make sure your winter glow is everything it can be.

  1. During the winter, I recommend a gentle cleanser to avoid additional irritation. If you opt for an exfoliant, look for one that also acts as a humectant so you can stay moisturized too.
  2. It goes without saying, but daily sun protection remains a must during the winter! UVA rays can still penetrate through windows and clouds, as well as reflect off snow, into the deepest layer of the skin during the winter season.
  3. Skincare swaps are a start, but you can also protect your skin around your home by investing in a humidifier to fight the dry indoor heater, as well as shortening your showers (and turning it down to a lukewarm temperature) to prevent any additional skin cracking and irritation.

I’ll see you on the slopes - glowing, hydrated face and all.

Best wintertime wishes,

Dr. Zoe

Shop Winter Skincare Essentials

Perfect Face Aesthetic Medicine

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