Ms. New Beauty is from that part of the Northeast where around this time of year (or about a month earlier in pre-global warming times), most people talk about "winterizing." Family and neighbors are all abuzz with discussions of what it's going to take to get ready for winter. The cars need to be winterized. Meaning, snow chains need to get put on the tires, fresh anti-freeze goes into the engine or battery or whatever receptacle under the hood that holds the anti-freeze. Fresh ice scrapers go in the back seat and heavy duty windshield wipers get put on the windshield. Those particularly well adapted to cold weather crises even stock a five pound bag of sand or no frills kitty litter in the trunk for icy days. The house needs to be winterized too. Drafty windows get repaired or lined. Space heaters get pulled out of the basement. And, those heavy duty blankets get toseed on the bed. All this talk of winterizing and Ms. New Beauty is always amazed at how people neglect to winterize their skin. A true ash-phobe like MNB just cannot sit idly by and let the harsh winds and cold air suck the moisture out of the knuckles, knees, and lips that walk past her everyday. This post is now dedicated to preparing your skin to weather a weary winter without drying out.
In The Shower
The first step to keeping your skin soft, smooth and sexy this winter is in your shower. Moisturizing your situation is more than just slapping on some lotion before you get dressed. You've got to think about the end from the beginning and adjust accordingly. So, the products in this post will help keep you moisturized before you even towel off.
Now, most dermatolgists and women's magazines will advise you to take a lukewarm, not hot, shower this winter since high temperatures can dry your skin out even more. I, on the other hand, love a piping hot shower when the temperatures are dropping, so I've figured out others ways to compensate for it.
Carees Exotic Oil Infusion Body Wash
The first step to keeping your skin soft and smooth is to use a moisturizing body wash. As a rule of thumb, you only want to use opaque body washes in winter because they contain more moisturizers and are less drying. If you can see through it, don't use it.
The most moisturizing body washes I've used are the latest cream oil formulas and this one is my favorite. The texture is rich and creamy. It almost looks like a thick lotion or body cream. When I first squeezed this onto my loofah, I almost didn't expect it to lather up. But it did. It produces a really rich lather with a great scent. The best part is that it is such a gentle cleanser that doesn't leave your skin stripped. This body wash features a blend of cassis cream and starflower oil. I'd be lying if I told you I knew what those are. I do know that whatever they are and where ever they're from, they work. After using this, you'll feel clean and moisturized, but not the slightest bit greasy.
About $5.99, available at drugstores
Neutrogena Body Oil
A lot of people like to mix a little bit of body oil in with their lotion in winter for extra hydration. But, by the time you've dried off and wrapped up in a towel, you've already lost the benefit of all the water you just doused yourself with in the shower. Before you step one foot out onto your bathmat, reach for this oil.
This nourishing sesame oil is the lightest oil I've ever used and has a decidedly pleasant scent. Just smooth it all over your skin before you get out of the shower. The oil locks in the moisture from the shower without leaving your skin coated in a heavy layer of grease. I find that by the time I'm done, I barely even need to towel off. Just be careful in applying it. Oil plus a wet shower floor can equal you busting your ass.
You can also skip your normal body cream or lotion after you're done smoothing on this oil, but that just feels so unnatural to me. I still use a lotion afterward, but I'm delighted by the fact that I don't really need to. In my mind, my lotion is just an added layer of protection and who couldn't use a little extra help in the War on Ash?
About $10.99, available at drugstores
Now, I know a lot of people swear by baby oil and this new body oil gel that are out on the market. I've tried them myself and I'll let you know why I chose to recommend this liquid formula instead. Baby oil and the Cocoa Butter Gel are mineral oil based formulas. And, though it coats your skin and leaves it feeling soft (if not, greasy), mineral oil cannot penetrate your skin. What it does is leave a soft layer on top of it. In doing so, it clogs up your pores and actually inhibits your skin's own system of moisturizing itself. Eventually, you'll find that the more you use these oils, the dryer your skin feels, and then the more you need to use them. So, I prefer to use only natural oils that are thinner and penetrate better.
Winterize your skin right in the shower, and standout as a soft, smooth beacon of light in this wintertime world of ashiness and dry skin, but just don't forget that Ms. New Beauty told you!
And please don't forget to sign up for the M.A.C. Holiday Collection Giveaway! There's only a little over a week left to sign up and win.