Winter-proof your skin

Our forecast this year: winter skin woes are not necessarily your future, armed with the right knowledge and Zehra Age Beautifully

The triple whammy of low temperatures, high wind-chill and indoor heating is what punishes our skin in winter. Dry, tight, flaky skin can be annoying for those of us with ‘normal’ skin, and if we’re prone to dryness and sensitivity, winter can be extremely unpleasant, with skin becoming itchy, cracking, and severely irritated. The first step in preventing dry skin is to understand what we’re dealing with, and what’s causing it.

1. Figure out whether your skin is dehydrated or dry.

Dehydration is very common and can affect all skin types. Dehydrated skin looks dull, rough, flaky and is occasionally tight in places. It’s caused by loss of water because of a compromised skin barrier film – the ‘force field’ on the surface of our skin that keeps moisture in and harmful things out. Luckily, it’s a reversible, temporary condition.

Physiologically dry skin is a permanent, genetic condition due to skin that lacks both water and lipids, which also causes has an inefficient skin. The skin is prone to redness and irritation, and is generally very tight, dry, rough, uncomfortable and prone to cracking, and needs to be protected and supplemented with barrier therapy creams and medical care.

2. Prevent your skin becoming drier and irritated

It quite simple… if you want your skin to function healthily and properly, keep its moisture levels topped up. Easier said than done when the temperature plummets, right? At Zehra Age Beautifully, we believe in a holistic approach, helping our skin from within and protecting it from external moisture loss.

The most important step is to help our skin to function optimally so that its moisture levels are stable. A key factor that promotes skin hydration is the vital protein collagen, but our genetics, age and lifestyle can compromise its production. The good news is that we can top up our collagen levels.

Scientific studies reported in the Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy and Skin Pharmacology and Physiology* show that taking a daily supplement of collagen peptide and vitamin C boosts skin hydration, slows water loss from the skin (TEWL), and boosts skin elasticity. In the second, double-blind study, 69 women aged 35-55 years received 2.5g or 5g of collagen or a placebo once daily for 8 weeks. Skin elasticity, skin moisture, TEWL and skin roughness were measured objectively before the trial, and after 4 and 8 weeks of intake. Skin elasticity was also assessed at a follow-up 4 weeks after the last intake of collagen. At the end of the study, skin elasticity in both collagen dosage groups showed a statistically significant improvement compared to the placebo group. After 4 weeks of follow-up treatment, a statistically significantly higher skin elasticity level was determined, and a positive effect on skin moisture and skin evaporation could be observed.

The collagen in Zehra Age Beautifully dietary supplements is the highest quality, extremely pure form of Type I hydrolysed collagen called Peptan™ – identical to that found in human bones and skin – so our bodies are able to use it very effectively. In addition, antioxidants vitamin C, co-enzyme Q10, and blackberry extract are included for their powerful anti-ageing, collagen-boosting benefits.

The recipe for moisturised, dehydration-resistant winter skin: Enrich your diet with two sachets a day of Zehra as well as healthy fats like omega 3-rich, extra-virgin olive and avocado oils.

THE DO’S AND DON’TS OF COPING WITH WINTER

As our skin is our largest organ with maximum surface area exposed to the elements, we need to protect it with some simple habits:

  • DO avoid lingering, hot baths – we know they warm you up and feel delicious, but they can strip your body of moisture. Make sure the water temperature of your bath or shower is not too hot and use a mild, soap-free cleanser with moisturisers (try an oil wash) to wash your skin, so you don’t strip away its protective moisture barrier.
  • DON’T use harsh, grainy exfoliators to remove dead, flaky skin. Use a gentle chemical exfoliator (with AHA or salicylic acid) instead.
  • DO use a protective moisturising body cream enriched with omega-3, shea butter, etc., every day to boost your skin’s barrier function and protect skin from harsh wind, cold and sun.
  • DO make sure you protect your face, lips and hands extra well as these bear the brunt of cold weather and sun damage exposure. You don’t want them ageing before their time. Use rich, nourishing, anti-oxidant creams or balms with added sun protection.
  • DON’T sit too near heating and DO keep a humidifier in the room to keep the air moist.

 

DID YOU KNOW?

ZEHRA Age Beautifully’s new, improved formula contains Blackberry extract, which has been found to be the richest source of anthocyanidin antioxidants in numerous scientific studies. It’s also what gives Zehra its delicious new berry flavour.