After a long, hot summer, winter weather is a welcome reprieve. No more humidity or high temperatures.
Winter can be exhilarating, but the season can also cause uncomfortable skin changes. Itchy, dry skin, flyaway hair—courtesy of excess static—and chapped hands are all signs that the moisture balance in your body has been compromised.
But protecting yourself from the elements doesn't have to be complicated. Just take the following steps to keep your body, hair, and hands healthy all winter long.
Did you know that your skin is the largest organ in your body? According to National Geographic, most adults have "8 pounds (3.6 kilograms) and 22 square feet" of skin.
Considering all it does for the body—protecting it from dehydration, contaminants, and UV damage—it's amazingly resilient, but it still requires care and attention to maintain hydration and prevent irritation.
Transepidermal water loss (TEWL), which is the scientific way of referring to moisture that has escaped through the upper layer of the skin, can happen just by taking showers that are too hot. While the warmth is good for sore muscles, it strips away the body's natural oils and can leave your skin parched. Luckily, remedying this problem is as simple as turning down the tap.
You can also prevent further moisture loss by using a properly formulated natural body wash that contains clinical-grade moisturizers. Skin really likes products in the 5–6 pH range, so shop for products with the words "gentle" or "pH-balanced" on the label.
And before drying off completely, by patting, not rubbing, lock in moisture with Puracy Organic Lotion while your skin is still slightly damp. The humectants in the lotion will help add hydration while the occlusive ingredients will lock that moisture in long-term.
Clean hair looks nice, smells good, and is usually easier to style. Unfortunately, winter wind and dry air can leave hair feeling like straw or flying out of control due to static electricity.
It's important to remove excess dirt and oils to keep your scalp healthy, and the earlier tip about water temperature applies to your shampooing habits as well. Hot water can strip your scalp of its natural oils, and it also weakens the individual hairs, causing them to break more easily.
The outer layer of your hair, known as the cuticle, has scales that overlap and make the hair strong. These scales lay flat against one another when hair is healthy, but they fluff up and remain open when hair is damaged. To prevent this from happening, lower your shower water temp and use a sulfate-free natural shampoo with restorative nutrients.
Coconut-based cleansers, like those found in our natural shampoo, are non-stripping. Puracy's shampoo also includes vitamins E and B5 plus olive oil-based squalene to keep hair hydrated while fighting frizz.
If you've stuck with us and read this far, then you've probably realized that hot water also does a number on your hands. This happens year-round, which is why a lot of people who cook, or help prep, wear gloves. Hot water also aggravates existing skin conditions, like eczema and psoriasis, which can be especially painful during the winter.
Water temperature aside, the skin on the back of your hands is thinner than other areas of the body. It is also exposed to the elements day in and day out, which can result in cracked or chapped skin if you're not careful.
Sulfate-free natural hand soap will prevent potential stripping, and applying Puracy Organic Lotion throughout the day will help replenish lost moisture. It contains aloe vera, which helps bind water to the skin, plus vitamin E to soften skin without leaving any residue behind.
A little TLC can help prevent the season's worst elements from damaging your body, hair, and hands. You can also think of TLC as "tap, lock, and choose." So, turn down the tap, lock in that moisture, and choose effective products. All three go hand in hand when it comes to healthy, happy skin and hair.