If you’re the kind of person who dreads the fall months because you fear the dry skin and constant itching that comes with it, we’ve got you covered. Cooper University Health Care dermatologist, Ashley Decker, MD, shared some tips for how to help your skin survive the changing weather. 

So dry 

When those temps drop, our skin feels it. Specifically, it feels dry. So Dr. Decker recommends tweaking your face wash and moisturizer to help pack even more moisture into your skin through the season. “Choose a facial cleanser that adds moisture, and look for moisturizers that are thicker creams, that’s how you’ll know it’s a good one,” she says. “If your moisturizer can come through a pump, it’s not thick enough.” 

Another method for helping your skin beat that seasonal dryness, says Dr. Decker, is to buy a humidifier. Our heaters may be keeping us warm, but they’re also contributing to drying out our skin. The humidifier will add some much-needed moisture to the air in those toasty rooms. 

Fix your shower

Ashley B. Decker, MD from Cooper University Health Care

We’ve all been there – the temperature starts to drop, you get home after a long day and hop in the shower for a hot and soothing break (and to get clean, of course). But Dr. Decker warns against setting that water temp so high, as difficult as that may be.

“We should really try to take showers and baths with more lukewarm water, and limit showering to once a day at most,” she says. “That hot water can really dry out the skin. It can also be helpful to, when possible, only lather the important areas – like your groin, armpits – and when you’re out of the shower, pat yourself dry and when you’re still a bit damp, that’s when you should apply your moisturizer.” 

Don’t put away the sunscreen

Summer and sunscreen go together like a wawa hoagie and the beach. But it shouldn’t stop there. You should be wearing sunscreen, 30 SPF or above, all year long, says Dr. Decker. “We’re still being exposed to UV rays in the fall and winter, which can cause skin cancer and skin aging – it causes loss of collagen, which leads to wrinkles and can cause skin discoloration like sun spots.” 

There are plenty of types of sunscreen to choose from, Dr. Decker adds. Sunscreens made specifically for your face are great, and so are tinted ones, but stay away from the kind that are mixed into makeup – those are too diluted. “Make sure to put your sunscreen on 15 minutes before you go outside, and reapply every hour and a half,” she says. “But make sure you’re putting enough on, usually you’re not. You should be putting on 1.5 ounces, that’s a full shot glass worth.”  

And don’t forget your lips! (Make sure your lip balm has spf.) 

Don’t break the bank

No matter what the influencers may say, you don’t actually have to shell out thousands of dollars a year to have a skincare regimen. Dr. Decker recommends plenty of “drug store” brand skincare products that work just as well as the ones with a luxury price tag. “You don’t need to spend a lot of money on products. Stores like Target, CVS and others have plenty of affordable brands like Neutrogena and CeraVe that are effective.”   

Yes, you have to wash your face 

The debate carries on: Do I really need to wash my face every day? Simple answer – yes. Dr. Decker recommends washing your face twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. “As the day goes on, you’ll be touching things and then your face, getting bacteria on it. And especially since we should all be wearing sunscreen every day, you’ll want to clean that off.” 

One hack if you’re not a huge fan of washing morning and night, she says, is to skip the cleanser and just splash your face with water in the morning, then do a complete wash at night. 


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