Nourishing moisturisers, anti-aging ingredients and serums that fortify – rather than seeing winter as the off-season where you can let your skincare standards slide, see it as the main event where protecting and improving the condition of your skin is the main goal.
The change in seasons, and daily habits to combat discomfort, can make skin more sensitive than usual. Redness and inflammation or dryness and loss of hydration are all side effects of winter’s briskness. The best way to treat this – keep doing what you’re doing.
“Your best defence against seasonal skin shifts is consistency,” says Melanie Grant. Grant’s eponymous clinic down in Double Bay is one of Sydney’s cult havens for those seeking the kind of transformative skincare that has you literally glowing when you leave. “Being diligent with your regime, keeping your skin clean, nourished and protected from the sun and environmental aggressors alone will yield great results.”
Grant also advises, though, that winter is a chance to add some additional supports to your regular routine: “These are additional things like facial oils or targeted hydrating serums that can be used to boost your existing products and keep them relevant year round.”
One key product to add is a decent retinol, or Vitamin A. It’s basically a superhero ingredient when it comes to your skin, says Grant, helping improve everything from “boosting cell metabolism, encouraging collagen production and repairing connective tissue.” Ideal for those seeking to refine, brighten, clarify and densify their complexion it also helps improve fine lines, coarse skin texture and dilated pores as well as those struggling with congestion or acne.
Like a superhero, however, a good retinol packs a powerful punch so use it sparingly and only every other day as you first start out.
German skincare company Auteur has arguably one of the best retinols on the market, their Definitive Retinol Serum. Along with a high dose retinol it comes with supportive ingredients like hyaluronic acid, squalene and ceramides to support barrier function first, allowing the retinol and other actives to target multiple skin layers without the risk of reactivity. Which makes it important that you continue to use a good sunscreen every day, even in winter. “UVB is harshest in summer but UVA rays can wreak havoc on the skin all year round,” advises Grant.
“This, paired with the damaging effects of intense weather and central heating can really compromise and devitalise the skin. Find a sun care formula that is nourishing enough to use as a daily SPF and moisturiser in one – this will streamline your morning regime by removing an extra step and help you stay consistent without compromising on results.”
(If you need to be pointed in the right direction for one that fits this bill, look no further than Australian brand Ultraceuticals SPF50 daily moisturiser.)
To take it back to the beginning, it’s also a chance to indulge in some heavy duty nourishment. The Skin Saviour Balm from Australian brand Ikkari – founded by clothing label Aje’s co-founder Adrian Norris – has quickly gained a cult following for doing exactly what it says on the box. Rosehip oil, camelia seed oil, beeswax and Tocopherol create a heavily hydrating barrier that protects and repairs the skin.
“When we first developed the Skin Saviour Balm I knew that I wanted something that would be deeply hydrating but also multi-functional,” explains Norris. “Our unique formulation using rosehip oil and beeswax is a bit of a game-changer and can restore moisture very quickly while also protecting the skin barrier. It is my go-to product, especially right now when tackling dehydration from the harsher winter weather or when I am travelling long haul.”
From cleanser to creme, check out the latest skincare products to get you through the winter below:
Auteur Definitive Retinol. $460. SHOP NOW
Ren Evercalm Cleansing Milk. $49. SHOP NOW
Youth To The People Triple Peptide + Cactus Oasis Serum. $94. SHOP NOW
Ikkari Skin Saviour Balm. $59. SHOP NOW
Chanel Le Lift Creme de Nuit. SHOP NOW
Aesop Exalted Eye Serum. $130. SHOP NOW
Biologique Recherche Biosensible Masque. $323. SHOP NOW