Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Jack Frost Nipping at Your Nose...and Hands, and Face...
Watch this week's video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lAtKEGer1YI
I know that opposites attract, and in my own marriage, this is glaringly evident when it comes to a very unexpected topic: moisturizing. Admittedly addicted, I’ve equipped more than half the rooms in my house with a bottle of lotion. Tucked away in the scarf closet for a quick squirt before bundling up, stored in the kitchen to glisten up after scrubbing dishes, and of course on clear display in each bathroom. Love it! It’s all topped off with my evening ritual of overnight skin creams and moisture socks (because feet count, too!) My husband, on the other hand, has grown a winter beard, arguing that provides better protection from the elements than any store bought product, and will only pump cream on his hands if they are literally cracking apart.
Here’s a typical interaction:
“Do you want some lotion babe? Your hands are like sandpaper”, I’ll say.
“Don’t you care?”
I felt vindicated after speaking with one of Sunnybrook’s dermatologists Dr. Kucy Pon. Her skin literally radiates as she walks down the hall, so here is someone I want to take advice from! She told me that we make some common mistakes this time of year, like taking long hot showers, using drying cleansers and wearing irritating fabrics, like wool. Add to this a lack of overall humidity and indoor heating, and you end up chapped and itchy. Dr. Pon also says winter is a time she commonly sees flare-ups of pre-existing skin conditions, like eczema.
Her best advice is to turn down the heat and lengths of baths and showers, choose gentle cleaners and to moisturize while skin is still dewy with a fragrance-free product. Look for ingredients like urea, glycerin and petrolatum. Place humidifiers in your home, and layer gentler fabrics, like cotton, close to the skin.
And don’t be part of the nearly 80% of people who forget to wear sunscreen in the winter! Dr. Pon says harmful UV rays still abound, and can be particularly potent when bounced off bright snow. The Canadian Dermatology Association recommends an SPF of 30 or higher, applied in liberal amounts over the body.
So don’t hold back! Just think of it as great practice for the summer months ahead. Can’t wait to let my husband know…