A wind of freshness is blowing. “ Winter is coming”! It's time for hot chocolates by the fire, raclettes, fondues and series under the duvet. This change in temperatures is accompanied by a change in your habits. This is therefore also the perfect opportunity to transition your skin routine into “ winter ” mode. Because your body evolves to adapt to the environment that has become chilly. She becomes more sensitive and responsive . To remedy this, you must learn to know it well and select the skin care products best suited to these low temperatures. Our experts explain everything to you!
I. How to explain the consequences of the cold on your skin?
1. The consequences of the cold on our skin
Have you noticed that your skin looks different in the winter season ?
She seems drier , dehydrated . Result ? It feels tight , tingles , gets hot and red , or even cracks . Your face then looks like reddish crocodile skin and the result is not very aesthetic .
2. The constitution of the skin barrier
The skin acts as a shield against external aggressions and in particular against temperature changes. This first line of defense is in fact a hydrolipidic film : a two-phase mixture with an aqueous phase (water/sweat) and an oily phase ( sebum/lipids: triglycerides and free fatty acids ). Added to this protective layer is an army of “good” bacteria , at war against the “bad” bacteria .
An intact skin barrier helps prevent “ aggressors ” (UV rays, cold, foreign bodies) from penetrating the epidermis and dermis . It also blocks water loss through evaporation to the outside, allowing the skin to be protected and hydrated .
3. The difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin
First of all, it is important to clearly distinguish between dry skin and dehydrated skin . The first needs to be nourished with fats ( oils ), the second requires water .
4. The mechanisms behind dry and dehydrated skin
Is your skin hungry for oil and thirsty for water ? Is she dry and dehydrated ? Several mechanisms explain this.
Mechanism 1 : Alteration of the hydrolipidic film and its protective barrier function
The cold will cause a reduction in the production of sebum by the skin's sebaceous glands . This leads to an imbalance in the oil phase of the hydrolipidic film. The skin lacks “ fat ” and becomes dry .
This deficiency in free fatty acids and triglycerides impairs its barrier function :
- the attackers penetrate more, the skin is no longer able to defend itself and becomes less resistant , more sensitive.
- the film becomes permeable, water evaporates from the skin to "hydrate" the cold air which it finds dry. This gift of water dehydrates it .
Mechanism 2 : Constriction of blood vessels for thermoregulation
The body 's thermoregulation can also explain skin dryness and dehydration . The body seeks to always maintain the same body temperature , which is why it acts on the blood vessels by contracting or dilating them depending on the location of the body to ensure that the temperature will always be ideal for the vital organs.
When it is cold , the body will produce chemical molecules causing vasoconstriction of the superficial vessels (small vessels irrigating the skin in particular). Blood flow will therefore be less in the face . The results ?
- A decrease in the elimination of toxins and a subsequent accumulation.
- An insufficient supply of nutrients to ensure good skin nutrition and therefore drying .
Mechanism 3 : Weakening of hydration factors
Cold degrades a protein called "filaggrin" which is responsible for the integrity of the skin . This weakens the skin's natural hydration factor.
5. The mechanisms behind peeling skin
Is it peeling around here? We are obviously talking about this freezing weather but also about your skin because everything is linked.
Every 28 days, enzymes participate in the elimination of our stratum corneum , the surface layer of our skin in contact with the surrounding environment. The latter is essentially made up of dead cells that the enzymes “eat”.
Unfortunately, enzymes need heat to work better. In winter, they therefore work slowly: they degrade dead cells less quickly and less well. The result is not very harmonious and visible since white and fluffy scales ("pieces" of dead cells ) appear, giving a rough or even rough feel .
6. The mechanisms behind reddening skin
The cold has had its little effect on you: under the spell you blush , but how can you explain that?
Heat dilates blood vessels and cold dilates them. This is the very principle of thermoregulation explained above. Going from very cold to very hot will tend to aggravate rosacea (chronic inflammation of the facial skin characterized by diffuse redness ).
7. The mechanisms behind chapped skin
Does winter crack you up ? Or rather crack the skin . This phenomenon is easily explained.
As already mentioned , dry cold air :
- Dries up . This intense skin dryness makes the stratum corneum porous . It is cracking .
- Dehydrates . This dehydration leads to skin thickening and loss of elasticity .
These two phenomena lead to the detachment of patches of skin and a cracked skin effect worthy of crocodile skin .
8. Examples of situations that put strain on the skin
Significant temperature differences
As you will have understood, the skin will be all the more reactive to cold if the drop in temperature experienced is significant. For example, if you heat your home a lot and it's snowing outside, it will make you feel its discomfort more.
What a joy to slip into a nice hot bath to warm up for hours! Bad idea, the heat attacks your skin and dehydrates it. When you come out of the water , the temperature difference will instantly cause a feeling of tightness . Choose a shorter lukewarm bath to get all the benefits.
Are you a ski enthusiast? Do you love that feeling of fresh air hitting your face as you hit the slopes? Indeed the air hits your face head on but it is a fatal blow that it deals.
Normally, on a day with little wind, the air surrounding your face has time to be warmed and humidified by your body temperature and your hydrolipidic barrier . This helps keep a protective, moist envelope of air around your face . When you catch the wind "in the face", the air arrives so quickly that it bounces off your skin and immediately leaves again. So it’s always a “new” air that surrounds your head. This dries , dehydrates and strips skin cells .
Inevitably, in winter we turn on the radiators . The problem is that these dry out the ambient air in the house. Your skin, generous as it is, therefore gives it a little water and finds itself dehydrated . Our tip, if you don't want to buy an air humidifier , is simply to put a glass of water on your radiator .
II. Cold illnesses
The skin can react excessively to cold , giving rise to “ cold illnesses” . We list some of them for you.
1. Allergy to cold
Cold acts as an allergen and causes an exaggerated, allergy-like reaction .
- Skin manifestations
- Tingling sensation
- People who cannot stand the cold
- As soon as they set foot outside in temperatures around 0°C.
- As soon as they run their hand under cold water
- As soon as they drink iced.
- Cold urticaria, a form of cold allergy
2. Cold urticaria
On areas that have been in contact with the cold:
- Hives outbreaks
- Itchy, swollen red patches ( paules )
- Severe itching
- Young adults , especially women
- A few minutes after direct contact with cold via air or icy objects
- Disappears in a few minutes to a few hours
- Lesions on the mouth and esophagus (following ingestion of an iced drink )
- Edema of the face , eyes and/or eyelids
- Severe stomach ache
- Anaphylactic shock
- Ice cube test: after placing an ice cube on the skin , the doctor observes how long it takes for urticarial papules to appear
3. Cold eczema
- The composition of the skin and in particular of the hydrolipidic barrier film is altered. The deficiency in triglycerides and free fatty acids leads to dry, permeable, sensitive epidermis and microcracks .
- Linked to dryness of the skin linked to the cold and not to the cold itself.
- Itchy skin on legs/face/hands
- People with an atopic condition (15% population), genetically predisposed to the cumulative development of common allergies ( allergic asthma, chronic eczema, allergic rhinitis )
- Difficult to relieve due to the many layers of clothing worn in winter
- Emollient creams
- The cold weakens the skin because it alters the composition of the hydrolipidic film and its protective barrier function. The skin becomes sensitive to attacks because it is less resistant and can no longer defend itself.
- Worsening of psoriasis symptoms
- People with psoriasis
- In contact with the cold
- Corticosteroid cream that treats inflammation
- Moisturizing the epidermis once a day
- Superfatted products (dermatological range without perfume and low allergy)
- Phototherapy (UV exposure in cabins) to calm itching and reduce the extent of plaques
III. A successful “winter” skin routine
Step 1: Cleaning
This step does not change from the usual routine, the skin must be cleansed morning and evening to rid it of impurities that clog pores, pollution and any other " aggressors ". Be careful not to use a harsh cleaning product otherwise it will also attack the skin . Choose a special “face” soap or cleansing gel, gentle, with a neutral pH and preferably hypoallergenic .
Step 2: Makeup removal
The cold destroys your hydrolipidic barrier ? Give it water and grease with a two-phase makeup remover . The water will hydrate your skin, the fat will nourish it. You then leave a protective fatty film on your skin and strengthen your skin hydrolipidic film.
Step 3: Exfoliation
You might think that the scrub is aggressive but this is not true, provided of course that you choose a special "face" scrub with a finer grain . It will help to reinforce the “dead skin cleaner” enzymes which work slowly in winter to exfoliate the skin and gently remove scales . This optimizes skin renewal .
Step 4: Mask
Apply a hydrating and nourishing mask every week to help replenish your hydrolipidic film damaged by the cold.
Step 5: Cream
In the morning, use a light day cream to create a protective film on the surface of your face against the sun , pollution , cold , etc. In the evening , apply a richer night cream that will provide deep nutrition and hydration to your skin while you sleep. The other organs being at rest, your body will be able to focus more on your skin to optimize the effects of the cream .
Choose a cream containing glycerin , which thanks to its humectant and hygroscopic action retains water from the skin and absorbs humidity from the air . Linseed gel is an exceptional moisturizer and sesame oil has a powerful nourishing action. Remember to check if your treatment contains it!
Step 6: Lip balm
The lips experience the cold as much as the rest of your face . Dead skin? Chapped? Itchy lips?
This little final touch to your beauty routine won't be too much: Apply a rich lip balm to deeply nourish them. Choose one preferably containing beeswax which is a fantastic film-forming agent . It will form a protective film on your lips and prevent their dehydration .
Step 7: Nutricosmetics
Acting deep from within can allow the skin to reconstitute these natural defense mechanisms and strengthen them. In particular, the supply of antioxidants will play a considerable role in protecting the skin against oxidative stress caused by external factors such as cold. Vitamins and minerals will act on cell division to regenerate the skin . This is the case, for example, of vitamin A. Others, such as zinc and vitamin A , will act on the metabolism of fatty acids to regulate the production of sebum for skin that is neither too oily nor too dry and protected. . Finally, certain active ingredients act directly on hydration , such as rose petals . The action on hydration can sometimes be indirect with ingredients which stimulate the synthesis of collagen which will help maintain the hydration levels of the dermis and epidermis .
Our Gold & Glow gummies deliciously flavored with orange and apricot concentrate all these active ingredients of interest. 2 gummies to add to your beauty routine for visibly more beautiful, protected, regenerated, hydrated and perfectly healthy skin !
Now, you will never again have the apprehension of exposing your skin to the cold: you understand it and you know how to anticipate its reactions with a beauty care routine adapted to the season.