I like to think of winter as my time to hibernate, beauty-wise. A generous 3 month period where I get to fix myself up and emerge from the bitter cold and layers of snow as a beautiful and glowing being just in time for the spring, the same way a caterpillar rests in a cocoon before it turns into a butterfly. Because this is a beauty hibernation period for us ladies, this makes it the perfect time to work at actively getting your skin in shape. Whether you’re dealing with dark spots, dryness, or uneven skin texture, these products are guaranteed the help you with your winter skin woes.
1. Vitamin C
This is quite an underrated product still, I feel like. It’s a multitasker as it’s an antioxidant that acts to fight and slow down the aging process of the skin, as well as helping to brighten and even out skin. When used with SPF, it also helps to protect the skin a little better from the sun. The brightening properties of Vitamin C will aid as well in helping your skin maintain a glowy appearance year-round, as the lack of vitamin D in the winter can cause the skin to look lifeless and sallow.
Cosrx Triple C Lightning Liquid $27
2. Hyaluronic Acid
Winter means cold weather, harsh winds, and dehydrated skin. In order to prevent your skin from getting depleted and dried out from the dry and cold atmosphere, you’ll need to keep it hydrated. Hydration refers to the water content in your skin, this is what helps your skin to stay looking plump and youthful. Hyaluronic acid is your best bet if you’re trying to restore and hydrate your skin, as it helps the skin to hold in more water, thus making it more healthy and hydrated. When your skin is properly hydrated, it’s softer, smoother, and the appearance of fine lines is reduced.
It’s important to note that when using hyaluronic acid, you must apply it on damp skin and not dry skin, then seal it in with a moisturizer. Hyaluronic acid has the ability to pull moisture out of the air but also from your skin as well, which is why you shouldn’t put it on dry skin. Otherwise your skin will be even more dehydrated and it will have the opposite effect.
The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 $8
Whether or not you believe it, SPF should be worn year-round. Even in the winter when it seems like the sun has retired for 3 months straight, you still should be wearing SPF because why not? And if you’re on a journey to clearing your skin and getting rid of dark spots, SPF is the second biggest thing after chemical exfoliation. When you’re using products like AHAs and BHAs, they exfoliate the top layer of your skin and make it more sensitive to sunlight, meaning your dark sports are more susceptible to being darkened without some form of SPF. Efforts to evening out the skin without the use of SPF will be a long and fruitless journey, so make sure you’re at least using an SPF of 30.
Missha Essence Sun Milk $13
4. Mandelic Acid
An underrated chemical exfoliant that has lived its life for a long time under the radar, mandelic acid is an acid derived from bitter almonds and is classified under the AHA category along with glycolic acid. Mandelic acid in particular is one of the best acids Black people and people of color, especially those with dark skin, can use as it’s much less irritating and and exfoliates the skin without causing further discoloration.
Make Up Artist’s Choice Mandelic Acid Toner $5-$16
5. Night Cream
After a long day of work, travel, and your skin being exposed to the brittle air, your night time routine should consist of replenishing your skin and nursing it back to normal. When you’re using stronger ingredients like acids and exfoliants in your routine, you want to make sure you seal it all in with a moisturizer that’s a tad thicker than what you’re used to, no matter what your skin type is. It’s quite possible for even oily skin to become dehydrated in the winter so it’s important to keep your moisture and hydration levels up more than you normally would for this time of year. Here’s a list of recommended moisturizers that you could add into your routine to serve as your night cream for the colder seasons.
“Erin Dyana is a freelance writer with a focus on pop culture, criticisms, and beauty. Her work has been featured in Teen Vogue, Urban Social TV, Wear Your Voice Magazine, Clementine Zine, and Philadelphia Print Zine. In her free time she likes to create art, watch films, read books, and eat everything in sight."