We’re firm believers in the notion that sexy starts with loving the skin you’re in—literally. Since nothing is less sexy than sandpaper-like skin, we asked renowned dermatologist Jeanette Graf, M.D. to share a few tips on how to winter-proof yourself so you don’t have to worry about ‘bringing sexy back’ when sunny season rolls around.
Sexy Skin Tip #1: Shorten Your Shower Sessions
When the temperature drops below bone chilling, warming up with a piping hot shower may seem appealing, but unfortunately the exact opposite it true. “Although it feels good, hot water quickly strips away the skin’s self-protecting lipid barrier,” warns Dr. Graf. Opt for warm water instead, and keep showers and baths to a minimum—15 minutes or less.
Sexy Skin Tip #2: Buff, Baby Buff
To avoid dry cells from accumulating on the skin’s surface (which leads to a sallow, lackluster complexion), gently slough it away two to three times a week. “Exfoliate regularly to rid the skin of its dead layers to keep skin glowing,” Dr. Graf recommends. Another good reason to scrub up? “It improves skin’s natural ability to better absorb your moisturizer.
Sexy Skin Tip #3: Moisturize More…
In order to transform a dry dehydrated epidermis into soft supple skin, timing is key. Within three minutes of bathing, liberally apply lotion to seal moisture into the skin. “Look for products with natural humectants like glycerin,” Dr. Graf suggests. For a double dose of hydration, “Start with a moisturizing body wash or bar in the shower.”
Sexy Skin Tip #4: …And Moisturize Even More
If your skin is perpetually parched, try ditching the towel post-shower. Allowing yourself to air-dry forces your body to drink in excess water, which helps replenish your skin’s lipid barrier, a.k.a. your body’s natural moisture reserve. For a little extra insurance, “Slathering on a lipid-rich cream or oil over your moisturizer is a secondary layer of defense,” Dr. Graf says.
Sexy Skin Tip #5: Humidify
Central heating systems very well may be the biggest culprit behind scaly skin, as blasting artificial heat is necessary to keep you warm, but it dries your skin out. To balance the air moisture levels in your home, Dr. Graf advises you take a trip to your local super store. “Invest in a humidifier to combat wintertime’s lower indoor humidity.” (Sitting fresh bowls of water out everyday is a cost-effective alternative.)