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Essential Tips for Keeping Skin Healthy During Winter - KOAM TV 7

Essential Tips for Keeping Skin Healthy During Winter

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It happens to many people's exterior during the winter.

"I feel the, the itchy," says Carlos Alvarez, a Joplin resident.

Cracked, brittle skin, rough hands, 'tis the season for our outsides to become parched, leading to itching, flaking and overall discomfort.

"Everyone thinks of summer time, you get the sun, and they don't realize in the winter, you still get damage," said Lindsey Teel, RN, esthetician at Skinnovations in Joplin. "There's still sunlight, it's not as bad, you also have heaters, you have a lot of heat and it blows in and really dehydrates you."

Fortunately, there are ways to stay supple.

Teel, says that a little extra care can help keep itching at bay. First thing: proper nutrition. Consume vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables that aid in hydration.

"Your skin also needs healthy fats," says Teel. "This time of year, you may not be not eating a whole lot of healthy fats if you're on a crash diet. Avocado, olive oils, things like that."

And next comes the work on the outside. Avoid overly long and hot showers and consider investing in a cool-mist humidifier to combat dry home air. Emollient products, such as face and body creams, lotions and oils, will replenish moisture and add a protective barrier to the skin.

And while it is important to keep germs at bay, soap and alcohol should be used only when needed.

"I use a lot of detergent at work so my hands are dry," said Alvarez.

"This time of year, it's cold and flu season, everyone's washing there hands and using hand sanitizers, which are alcohol based typically," said Teel. "That alcohol base really sucks the moisture out of your skin. It evaporates quickly and takes the moisture with it."

One final thing Teel recommends: drinking plenty of water. A vital habit that is too-often overlooked during winter.

"When it's hot, you tend to drink more, when it's cold you just really don't drink as much."

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