The winter months are notorious for two things: cold weather and wreaking havoc on our hair and skin.
For many of us, the winter months are the time when we don't look our best – or at least we don't think we do. Sunlight is on short supply and the lack of vitamin D has us missing the glow from the warmer months, our sun-kissed hair and our dewy, healthy looking skin.
But there are many things you can do to keep your hair and skin healthy and looking great, and combat the elements with some simple alternatives until the spring arrives.
Winter is synonymous with dryness from all the heat in our homes, workplaces and schools. This can cause dry lips, scalp and itchy, irritated skin on your face and body.
If your scalp is dry, itchy and flaky, coconut oil or vitamin E may be your salvation. Try massaging small amounts of either on your scalp, leave it in for about 15 minutes, then rinse it off in the shower. While rinsing, make sure your showers are lukewarm instead of hot as the heat will further dry out your scalp and skin.
If dry and cracked feet are your problem, try using a pumice stone a few times a week to rub the dead skin off. Soaking your feet in some Epsom salts and essential oils will make the skin easier to slough off.
Chapped lips are a common symptom during the long winter, so keep a tube of moistening lip balm with you that contains ingredients like coconut oil, vitamin E and menthol to soothe your lips if they are cracked.
Our hair is especially susceptible to the cold. If it's not dry and dull, it's frizzy and lackluster. When washing your hair, use as little shampoo as possible as the detergents in your shampoo strip the moisture from your hair. Use a good conditioner and rinse with warm, not hot, water. Towel dry whenever possible and try a leave-in conditioner, or a few drops of coconut oil, and brush through.
Your face is exposed to the elements the most, and suffers the most during the winter. To protect it and keep it from being dry, use a richer moisturizer that has sunscreen. In addition to using a good moisturizer, exfoliate once a week to get the dead skin off, revealing a healthier glow.