Your skin can become dry and sallow in the colder months. A winter facial can help give it a boost through a number of different resurfacing and nourishing treatments. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES
Your skin can become dry and sallow in the colder months. A winter facial can help give it a boost through a number of different resurfacing and nourishing treatments. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES

STYLEwise: Skin feeling the discontent of winter?

I can tell its winter by the number of ladies booking in for winter facials. When the temperature drops so does the skin's moisture content, the cold air outside and central heating indoors stripping away leaving your skin leaving it dry, irritated, scaly and sallow.

A rejuvenating facial can help counteract the effects of winter in three ways - by exfoliating, providing deep cleansing and by restoring moisture balance and hydration.

One of the best ways to achieve this is by having taking advantage of the peak conditions for a winter peel -- when there is less damaging sunlight around the UV levels are lower.

Some additional benefits of a chemical skin peel can include:

 Remedying accumulated sun damage.

 Minimising the look of mild scar damage

 Diminishing the appearance of surface wrinkles

 Improving blotchy, irregular skin colour areas

 Removing stubborn blackheads and mild acne

What is a Glycolic/Lactic Acid Peel?

Glycolic acid is an Alpha-Hydroxy Acid (AHA) which naturally occurs in sugar cane. It has the smallest molecular size of all the AHA's allowing it to better penetrate the skin. Lactic Acid is derived from milk and while it is excellent at resurfacing the skin it also increases skin's moisture levels. It is applied to the skin in various strengths ranging from 20-70% for varying time frames depending on the desired result and skin's response. It loosens the thickened surface layers that appear as dry, rough, scaly skin and stimulates the production of collagen in the deeper layers. As the uppermost layers are sloughed away, a smoother textured and healthier skin is revealed. Glycolic peels are used to treat mild sun damage, pigmentation and loss of elasticity.

Deep clean

The next step to healthy winter skin is deep cleansing. During the colder months dead skin cells can accumulate and clog pores leading to blemishes. Daily cleansing will help to remove make up and grime, however a deep cleanse can target specific problems such as breakouts, dehydration, and fine lines. Deep pore cleansing can include steam, extractions, facial massage and facial masks.

Moisture retention

The final step of your facial will be the application of a moisturiser and sun cream. During winter most of us will need to 'up the ante' on moisturising and it's worth taking this opportunity to get some advice from your aesthetician about a moisturiser that's suitable for your skin and the colder months ahead.

You may have a favourite moisturiser that works perfectly well during spring and summer, but as the weather changes so will the needs of your skin. Look for one that is oil based as opposed to water based. The oil will form a protective barrier that helps to retain your skin's natural moisture.

Make sure you look for a 'non clogging' oil that is appropriate for use on your face; avocado, primrose and mineral oils are usually a good option.

Lastly, don't forget to apply sunscreen. Many people associate sunburn and sun protection with blue skies and warm weather, but the truth is that exposure to the winter sun can be just as harsh. Use a SPF 15 or 30 sunblock and remember to reapply it regularly as winter conditions can dry it out more quickly.



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