Winter Skincare: Navigating Mumbai's Seasonal Skin Woes
As winter descends upon the bustling city of Mumbai, the relief from the scorching heat comes hand in hand with a new set of challenges for skincare. Itchy skin, dry noses, and chapped lips become telltale signs of the changing season, prompting residents to seek ways to protect their skin from the harsh effects of winter. While the city's winter weather may not be as extreme as in colder regions, the pleasant climate brings its own share of skincare concerns, with dry skin taking the lead.
Compounding these concerns is the persistent issue of poor air quality, exacerbated by the festive celebrations of Diwali. The combination of dry weather and increased pollution levels can spell trouble for many Mumbaikars, especially those with sensitive skin. To address these challenges head-on, Mid-day Online sought the expertise of dermatologists, unlocking the doors to valuable insights and essential winter skincare tips.
Dry skin is a common condition in dry weather, but winter brings forth a variety of other skin issues such as dry eczemas, psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, prurigo, xerotic eczemas, as well as problems like frizzy hair and brittle nails. Dermatological experts emphasize the importance of establishing a winter skincare routine well in advance to shield the skin from the adversities of the season.
Dr. Shefali Trasi Nerurkar, a consultant dermatologist at Dr Trasi Clinic and La Piel Skin Clinic, acknowledges that Mumbai's winter may not be extremely cold, but adjustments to skincare routines are necessary if the skin starts to dry up. Dr. Reshma Vishnani, a consultant dermatologist, trichologist, and aesthetic dermatologist at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, highlights the challenge of retaining natural moisture in the skin due to the drop in temperature and humidity, making it more susceptible to dryness, flakiness, and hair issues. This underscores the importance of adopting a winter-appropriate skincare routine.
The Winter Skincare Mantra:
Choosing the Right Products: The cornerstone of winter skincare lies in the selection of appropriate products. Dermatologists recommend incorporating hydrating skincare items, including gentle, non-soapy, and fragrance-free cleansers for both face and body. Micellar cleansers, known for their skin-friendly nature, are a gentle alternative.
Moisturizing Essentials: Depending on skin type, individuals are advised to use lightweight, water-based moisturizers that contain ceramides, aiding in moisture retention. Those grappling with extremely dry skin can opt for thicker moisturizers or body butter. Nighttime calls for the inclusion of hyaluronic acid serum, adding an extra layer of hydration.
Anti-Aging Measures: For anti-aging concerns, products containing peptides, vitamin C, and hyaluronic acid are recommended. A moisturizing shampoo and conditioner become essential to keep the hair hydrated.
Daily Winter Skincare Regimen:
- Bathing Rituals: Opt for a bath with lukewarm water, steering clear of hot water that can strip the skin of its moisture.
- Moisturize Adequately: After bathing, pat the body dry and generously apply moisturizer. For daytime, sunscreen is essential, while nighttime calls for hyaluronic acid serum followed by another round of moisturizing.
- Pampering Sessions: Treat yourself to a 30-minute oil massage before bathing, followed by a mild cleanser and moisturizer. Hand and foot creams containing 4-10% urea can be particularly effective in preventing rough and cracked extremities. A soak in warm water before applying these creams enhances their efficacy.
- Hair and Nail Care: Regularly oiling the hair helps to hydrate and prevent breakage. Apply nail oil or moisturizer to keep the cuticles hydrated.
- Lip Balm Application: Regular and generous application of lip balms, preferably with SPF, is crucial to prevent dry and chapped lips.
- Eye Care: Utilize a good eye contour cream with ceramides and growth factors to hydrate the delicate skin around the eyes and prevent fine lines and wrinkles.
Both Dr. Trasi and Dr. Vishnani emphasize the non-negotiable nature of moisturizing and caution against neglecting this crucial step.
Common Skincare Mistakes to Avoid:
- Hot Water Hazards: Hot water baths should be avoided as they can strip the skin of moisture, making it prone to dermatitis. Toners, known for their dehydrating effects, should also be avoided.
- Glycerine-Free Zone: Glycerine-based soaps should be replaced with shower gels or neutral pH skin-friendly soaps called syndets. Additionally, skincare products containing retinol, salicylic acids, or benzoyl peroxides should be substituted with gentler alternatives.
- Exfoliation Etiquette: Refrain from exfoliating the face or body with scrubs or natural face packs in dry, cold weather, as this can cause redness and exacerbate itching. Instead, opt for masks containing hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, or vitamin E for hydration and a radiant complexion.
- Winter Wardrobe Wisdom: Choose soft woollens over harsh clothing to prevent further irritation of dry skin.
- Hair Handling: Avoid exposing wet hair to cold winds, as this can lead to breakage and hair fall. Steer clear of curling machines and tongs that can damage the hair cuticle.
The Crucial Role of Sunscreen:
According to Dr. Vishnani, sunscreen should be applied and reapplied every three hours in adequate quantities, irrespective of being indoors or outdoors. Even during winter, sunscreen is indispensable, offering protection against both harsh sun rays and visible light from electronic devices. Dr. Trasi echoes this sentiment, emphasizing that facial tan can result from exposure to visible light emitted by laptops and computers.
Pre and Post-Makeup Skincare:
In dry weather, opting for organic and liquid-based makeup can help the skin stay hydrated. Powder-based makeup is discouraged, as it can give the face a cakey appearance. Alcohol or spirit-based cosmetics should be avoided, given their tendency to irritate the skin. Using generous amounts of moisturizers before applying makeup prevents skin dryness, and caution is advised against excessive layering of foundation creams, concealers, and foundations to avoid acne breakouts.
When it comes to lip makeup, matte or long-lasting lipsticks are discouraged for everyday use, as they tend to dry out the lips. Instead, moisturizing or glossy lipsticks are
The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of information presented in this content. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Reliance on any information provided in this article is solely at your own risk. The author and the platform do not endorse or recommend any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned in the content. Always consult with a qualified healthcare professional for medical advice tailored to your individual circumstances.