For most of us, Old Man Winter seems to be shuffling his feet through February at a snail’s pace. His icy, cold breath hangs in the air sapping the moisture right out of our skin. Our faces, lips, and hands feel chapped and painful. Plenty of products promise you reprieve, but the relief seems only temporary. What gives?
While there’s no way of speeding through to spring, we’ve got some practical ways to survive winter’s effects on our skin.
It’s not just cold, dry air that dehydrates skin. It’s the myriad of environmental factors, weather, and products we use that deny us that dew-kissed, soft and smooth skin.
Our own body can work against us, producing either too much or too little sebum (the oil that is secreted from our bodies). While we tend to think sebum is ‘bad’, leading to acne, it’s not entirely true. Sebum is rich in Vitamin E, an antioxidant known to fight damaging free-radicals. It’s the over-production that may lead to acne, if not properly cleansed and balanced.
We’re a society of germaphobes, promoting handwashing as one of the best defenses against the crud that gets us sick. And while this is absolutely a great idea, that constant washing strips the skin of the protective moisture it needs. Furthermore, antibacterial gels and sprays can contain ingredients that suck the skin dry.
Not all soaps are created equal. In fact, many of the household named personal care products contain ingredients that not only rob your skin of necessary moisture, they can potentially lead to serious health hazards. Some of these ingredients may include:
Triclosan- Used as an antibacterial agent, this chemical does not deteriorate, causing harm to our waterways and marine life. When combined with the chlorine, Triclosan forms chlorophyll, a known carcinogen.(1)
Parabens- You’ll find pesky parabens in shampoos, body soaps, hand soaps, deodorants, lotions and more. Used to preserve, they’re known to mimic estrogen, increasing the risk for breast cancer.(2)
Synthetic Color- Wintertime often leads to more hot soaks in the tub. And what’s more luxurious than adding a fizzing bath bomb? Many of the bath bombs (and other personal care products) may contain synthetic color, an ingredient banned by the European Union due to its carcinogenic properties.(2) (We’ve got a safe, luxurious option!)
Fragrance- Because a fragrance is considered ‘trade secret information’, the FDA and EPA do not have a regulatory system in place for ingredients used in a product’s fragrance. In humans, the concerns range from respiratory to neurological and dermatological. In an EPA study (1999), fragrances were noted as “persistent, bioaccumulative pollutants that are sometimes highly toxic… [and sometimes] toxicologically significant”.(3)
The list of health hazards commonly found in soaps and lotions seem to outweigh the struggle with dry skin. Still, we need to clean and moisturize. The right ingredients will remove dirt and bacteria without stripping your skin of moisture.
At KIND soap, we craft handmade soaps that gently cleanse while nourishing your skin. While it’s hard to play favorites, we’ve comprised a list of natural soaps that you’re sure to love.
Honey Loofah Bar Soap- Infused with antibacterial, antioxidant-rich honey, moisturizing coconut oil, and intoxicatingly fragrant honeysuckle, this little bar is a skin-saver. What you’ll love about this soap is the natural loofah built right in. The invigorating scrub gently removes dead skin particles and stimulates circulation. See what the buzz is about here!
Oatmeal Rx Bar Soap- Does your skin seem to hate you? Do you struggle with itchy, angry, red, irritated skin? Our Oatmeal Unscented Rx Bar Soap was born out of one woman’s burning passion to soothe her son’s eczema, and has helped many others who share similar struggles. Made with soothing oatmeal, shea butter, and goat’s milk. No harmful, drying, or irritating ingredients. (We did add extra doses of love.) The soothing starts here.
Aloe Rescue Rx Bar Soap- Is your skin cracked like the Sahara, parched and thirsty for deep moisturization? Grab hold of our Hand & Body Repair Bar Soap for healing relief. This unscented soap is made with soothing aloe vera gel and calendula petals. It relieves the most painfully chapped, cracked, over-exposed, sunburned, or weather-beaten skin you can offer up. Grab your bar here.
While we’ve just listed three handmade soaps famous for beating winter skin, we’ve got a whole lineup of moisturizing soaps for everyone in your family.
Now that you’ve got the dirty on the cleansers, it’s time to wrap it up with the right moisturizer. Once you’ve cleaned your skin, it’s important to rehydrate. Applying a lotion, balm or creme after bathing is best, as it adds a protective barrier to your skin’s surface (and pores are cleaned to avoid clogs).
Our line of moisturizers are packed with rich, plant-based emollients to provide rehydration and restoration of dry, chapped skin. If you’re suffering from winter skin, we suggest the following:
Shea Luxe Creme- Dive deep into indulgent moisturization and enjoy the sumptuous scent of our Shea Luxe Hand Creme or Shea Luxe Body Creme. With a cult-like following, we can’t hand make this stuff fast enough! Once you try this opulent, thick lotion, you too will want to join the club… we’re considering the t-shirts now. Loaded with ample amounts of shea butter with a blend of premium, natural ingredients, it’s recommended for every skin type and safe for sensitive skin. Load up here!
Baby Body Lotion- This lovely lotion is an easy-to-absorb, lightweight lotion for babies, kids and grown ups with super-sensitive skin or senses! This silky, spreadable lotion has the barely-there scent of calming Chamomile. Feel comfortable using a gentle, soothing, petroleum-free lotion made with the most baby-friendly ingredients we could find. Find it here!
Goodnight Kisses- Are your lips cracked, dry, and painful? Reach for the restorative Goodnight Kisses, and kiss those chapped lips goodbye! Try it is an aromatherapy treatment, using it to relax and relieve stress.
Traditional lip balms, glosses, and colors can contain harmful petroleum-based products. Lip products get ingested by way of a harmless sip of coffee, bite of food, or even talking. Thankfully our all-natural lip balm contains ingredients that are safe for your entire family. This little jar can almost do it all!
While there are glimpses of spring on the horizon, it’s good to know KIND’s got your back when your skin can’t take any more of winter’s woes. And when spring arrives, we’ll be flinging open the doors to the store in celebration of warmer days, plenty of sunshine, and the newness the season provides.