Beauty Guru: Building an Arsenal to Combat Winter Dry Skin

Oh New York winters, how do I loathe thee, let me count the ways. One you make me want to eat like a bear and sleep until it gets warm again, two I end up wearing everything (thereby looking 10 pounds heavier) I own in order to keep warm and three and perhaps the most dreadful offense is you wreak havoc on my skin. I am a tried and true NY state girl, but when winter rolls around I am ready to high tail it to somewhere sun drenched and humid. I don't have the income or job flexibility to travel somewhere more tropical (right now, it could happen someday) so I have found ways to help my skin survive winter more comfortably.

Hydration is key and that goes for both the inside and outside.

1. Drink more water! It's so important year round, but especially important with interior heating kicking on and drying out the air. I drink a glass of water when I wake up, one before every meal and one right before bed. By being regimented about when I drink water I am more likely to remember to do it and it eventually becomes a habit. If you are like me and hate the feel of cold water in the winter, warm it up. Boil some water on the stove and drink it hot instead.

2. Cut the hot showers. Your muscles may love you for those hot steamy showers, but your skin won't. Hot water removes the protective layer of oils that the skin naturally produces thereby letting the water from the skin escape. To soothe dry and itchy winter weary skin, add 1/2 cup baking soda to a warm bath, (warm, not hot) and keep it short -- about 20 minutes. The baking soda pulls away impurities and calms inflammation.

3. Build your moisturizer army. My moisturizer army is made up of three products that I use day and night to combat the dry, scaly flakiness that happens to my skin. The first product I use is a lightweight Apricot Kernel oil (I like this one from Aura Cacia). I buy a 4 oz. bottle and transfer it to a 2 oz bottle with dropper, it makes application so much easier. I use the oil after cleansing my skin in the morning and after cleansing my skin at night, gently patting it all over my face and neck. In the morning after applying the oil and letting it absorb for about 10 minutes I follow with an application of sunscreen. I like to wear sunscreen daily even in the winter months, my favorite is elta MD UV Clear SPF 46. The last item which I like to keep in my bag, so it's with me whenever I need, is Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion. This lotion is classic hydrator that never fails to provide instant relief and doesn't irritate my skin. I keep a small 2 oz. bottle with me and apply before putting on my gloves, to give my hands an on the go moisture mask.

Those are my skin saving winter survival tips, I hope they help you combat dry uncomfortable skin and dare I say maybe even love winter (or at least make peace with it).

What do to help your skin survive this season? What products do you use specifically in the winter? Let me know in the comments below.

Thanks for reading!

Jennifer Rose Griffin has been a Yahoo Shine Beauty Guru since April 2009. She is a self-professed product junkie and a sucker for pretty packaging. Jennifer Rose is also an artist specializing in drawing and portraits. She works out of her home in Westchester County, NY. For more on Jennifer Rose Griffin's fashion and beauty obsessions follow her on Pinterest and Twitter. Please also visit her art website to see examples of her work and find out about upcoming shows.