Preventing Winter skin

By Darla
In Blog
Jan 22nd, 2014
1 Comment

Fall and winter present extra challenges for skin care, which can alter your self tanning practices. A little bit of foreknowledge can go a long way to help prevent poor fading associated with this time of year.

Dehydrating indoor heat, icy wind, colder outdoor temperatures combined with long and or frequent hot showers and bathing will diminish moisture from the skin and deplete the natural oils that maintain suppleness and moisture.

Your sunless tan can quickly begin to look dull, lifeless, dry and fade poorly. Skin surface may feel dry, tight, pulled, and itchy.

A few simple adjustments now will go a long way to helping maintain a rich lush tan even through the driest winter months.

Tanning Solutions:

Start with high quality, non drying airbrush solutions that incorporate well penetrating moisturisers and anti-oxidants. These will fortify the skin, enabling it to handle the added stresses of winter weather, and hold moisture into the tissue layers more effectively.

Lower DHA (Dihydroxyacetone) percentage formulas may fade better in the winter season, since clients may experience increased skin drying with 12% or higher formulas. If applicable, switching to a lower DHA percentage can lessen poor fading issues on some client types.


Well moisturised skin, year round, can help prolong any sunless tan; this is especially true in fall and winter months. Even clients who find they don’t need to moisturise in Spring and Summer, may find that Fall and winter may require this added step. Daily moisturising is recommended for all clients, some clients my find a second moisturising product just before bed is also helpful

Best results will be obtained with good quality products. Not all moisturisers are created equal.  Products that may be to rich or heavy for hot humid summers are often perfect in the middle of winter. Shop for products that are high in anti-oxidants, and anti-inflammatory ingredients.  A thicker cream or butter base is often the most effective, though some clients may have excellent results with a lotion, if the base incorporates quality ingredients.

The face, and hands often have more weather exposure then the body in the winter, since these areas may not be as heavily covered in clothing. Skin texture and type also differs, making it more sensitive to dehydration effects. This may make skin chapped and raw.

What moisturiser Ingredients pack the most Bang for the buck?

Look for lotions that contain the following for best moisturising abilities.

Ceramides are a waxy ingredient or lipid that are found within all body cells. They are found in the skin (and organs) and create a natural protective layer on the skin surface to help slow water loss, and maintain suppleness.  Many ingredients mimic the natural ceraides found in human skin, and are very beneficial to anyone with dry skin issues. Applying ceremides to skin regularly within your moisturisers can help rebuild and restore the skins protective layer, improving appearance, and dramatically improving the skins ability to maintain healthy moisture levels. You will often see these on an ingredient list as ceramide, followed with a number designating the type.

Glycerin is a humectant. Its works by drawing water from the surrounding environment, into the skin layers. If you do not drink enough fluid regularly, in some cases a humectant can actually make the skin appear dryer on the surface because the inner moisture levels are not being replenished sufficiently to maintain correct water balance.

Hyaluronic acid. This ingredient is not an “acid” in the way most consumers think of the term. Rather it is a thick natural lubricating substance found in the human body, in joints and eye fluid. It is used in medical procedures and as a filler for cosmetic surgeries.  When applied to the skin surface it is beneficial in wound healing, and moisturising.

Lanolin, mineral oil,  petroleum jelly (petrolatum), Dimethicone. All are Emollients, that work by forming a flexible semi permeable layer on the top of the skin surface to slow waters ability to evaporate from the skin surface. This is not harmful to the skin, when products are correctly formulated. It will not “suffocate” the skin, as skin does not breath. The layer is not completely water proof, so water transfer/evaporation will still occur. But these ingredients in a properly formulated lotion will help skin better “trap” water in its layers. This is beneficial and soothing to chronically dehydrated skin.  The four above ingredients are all excellent emollient ingredients to help skin hold moisture. Those marketed for cosmetic use are refined, and skin friendly and safe to use daily. They will not cause cancer, or cause skin to be dehydrated. In fact they are some of the most extensively researched, and best moisturisers around for the severe dry skin. Their easy availability and lower cost allow them to be included in many types of budget friendly and premier products.

Straight Plant oils such as Jojoba, Olive oil, Sunflower oil, Grape-seed oil, Apricot Kernel Oil,  Palm oil (Coco Butter), Shea Butter and more. Apply these over, or mixed with,  your regular moisturiser to help it work even better for those with especially dry skin. Oils can vary in heaviness, so find the one that best suits your needs, saving heavier oils for bed time.

Antioxidants. These do not moisturise the skin, but can help skin function in a more healthy manner, and help it to heal itself. One key function of good anti-oxidants are their ability to help lessen irritation and inflammation, which can come from a variety of sources. Stressed or irritated skin has a lessen ability to maintain correct moisture balance. Healthy skin will better maintain correct moisture levels. Look for moisturisers and Tanning products that contain a variety of potent anti-oxidant ingredients.  No one antioxidant is the best. Rather a mixture or variety of “good” antioxidants seems to benefit the skin more dramatically.

Apply moisturiser to moist skin:

A simple concept which many may miss. Dry skin is dry because it has lost water faster then it should. A good moisturiser will help nourish tissues and seal moisture into skin. But the skin must have moisture, in the form of water, in the skin first. So apply your moisturiser to damp skin. This allows it to seal the water into the skin tissues, which is where it will benefit most.

The easiest way to do this is to apply your moisturiser to shower damp skin after towelling dry. Do this immediately after showering, as moisture evaporation from the skin will start immediately. And after 20 minutes, most of the excess water from showering is gone.

Avoid Harsh Cleanser:

Use gentle mild cleansers that are pH neutral on the skin. Avoid bar soaps, which tend to be harsher then milder body wash gels. Use gentle products, with neutral pH (7.0 or less) when possible.

Limit long hot showers, long tub baths and Jacuzzis. Hot water dries skin and strips it of essential lipids. Long tub soaks also breakdown the skins protective oil barrier that helps it hold in moisture.

Adjust Exfoliation:

Exfoliating too often or to aggressively can dry out the skin. Winter skin is dryer and may not tolerate excess scrubbing as well.  So you may need to exfoliate more lightly, less often or switch to milder exfoliation options.

Add needed surface oils:

If client’s skin is extra dry, mist a light coat of Jojoba oil  Grape-seed oil or other dry oil onto client’s skin before spray tanning. Mist skin lightly, advise client to rub in for 20 to 30 seconds. Lightly buff off any excess with a soft fluffy towel. Spray immediately. If you are applying oil lightly, it will normally not effect the sunless tan. Product should not be heavy on the skin nor should it drip or run. It will soak into skin within a few minutes. Not all oils can be used in this manner. Most Dry Oils will have the fast penetration needed for this use.

Never underestimate the need for water
increasing ones water intake will help the skin in a number of ways. The human body is 60 to 70% water. Blood is mostly water, and body organs have high water content. Water is needed to allow nutrients to travel easier throughout our system, to maintain proper temperature, remove wastes, protects joints and organs, and transports oxygen to the organs and skin.

Many people are water deficient in general. In winter, indoor heating creates an environment of dry indoor air, which dehydrates the skin faster then people realise.

An easy formula to figure out how much water you need:
Take your body weight in pounds, and divide by two. That will give you the number of ounces of water per day that you will need. For example, a 120 pound women should drink 60 ounces of water a day. That’s 7 and one half, eight ounces glasses of water. Coffee, tea, sodas and juices can contribute to ones overall water levels, but because of added sugars, salts and additives, they may not equal enough “good” fluid levels as plain water. So add extra water as needed.

Don’t forget you Essential Fatty acids!
Many people are imbalanced in the Essential fatty acids needed for smooth supple healthy skin. Even though many have diets high in synthetic fats, we often miss the natural fats needed to maintain good skin health.
These are known as the Omega fatty acids. GLA (gamma-linolenic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) are the components to focus on. You need a balance of each for good skin and body health. They work together. Our bodies do not make these naturally, and need them from our diet or oral supplements.
Fish oil, and Borage oil are excellent concentrated sources of these healthy oils. Individual supplements, or “Complete Omega Oil Blends” can be purchased inexpensively in most health food and drugstore.

One Response to “Preventing Winter skin”

  1. kiss-my-tan says:

    I suffer from really bad winter skin
    It really frustrates me! i will be keeping all this in mind from now on x

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