#1 Face oil
One of the best ways to deal with skin that’s severely lacking moisture is a good face oil. You can layer it under your moisturiser and sunscreen, or even add a few drops to your foundation to make it better-suited to dry winter skin. If you think face oils are too greasy for your skin, you’ll be surprised to find that a lot of them sink in almost effortlessly. I find that they’re best applied on damp skin, so you can spritz some hydrating or soothing face mist all over your face before massaging in some of your favourite face oil. Some of the more popular face oils out there are the Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate (for night time), Lamer’s The Renewal Oil, Boscia Tsubaki Beauty Oil, and The Body Shop’s Oils of Life Intensely Revitalizing Facial Oil. I also really love an organic Olive Oil Serum for more sensitive skin types.
#2 Lip balms
Your lips are quite sensitive to the harsh winter cold, and are prone to peeling, chapping, and cracking. A really intensive reparative lip balm or treatment is crucial in winter climates, and you’re also going to need a lip balm that’s going to protect your lips from the environment. Something with a thicker consistency that doesn’t need to be reapplied too often is ideal for when you’re heading out. Some people go with Vaseline or Glossier’s Balm Dotcom (stick to the flavoured versions if possible).
#3 Body butter
The regular lightweight body moisturisers we’re used to in Singapore’s humid weather won’t be much help in a cold and dry climate. If you consider that the cold is also going to make you take hotter showers to stay warm, and that our skin is going to struggle with adjusting to such dry weather, it’s only fair to assume that your skin is going to be drier than ever. Slathering on a rich body butter is pretty much a necessity. Put it on right after your shower so your skin better absorbs the moisture, and don’t forget your feet!
#4 Night face creams
Take advantage of your sleep time to replenish the moisture loss from your skin. Night time is the best time to use some potent rich creams, because it doesn’t matter if your face isn’t perfectly matte while you sleep. Keeping your skin well hydrated is the best way to maintain a supple complexion, even if low humidity can be kinder to your oily skin. You can also layer a cream over a face oil for more intense hydration. IT Cosmetics’ Confidence in a Cream is wonderfully rich and packed with anti-ageing goodness, and cold creams are especially heavy and suited to winter. If you want to use something lighter, you’ll need to layer more hydrators or use a sleeping mask to make sure your skin is sufficiently moisturised.
#5 Daily moisturisers
Forget the lightweight oil-free gels you need to keep your face from looking like a greasy mess in our heat and humidity. Winter is a whole other animal, and because of the intensely dry climate, your skin will only look more greasy if you don’t give it the hydration it needs during the day. Moisturisers like simple hyaluronic acid lotions are some of my favourite products for basic hydration.
Just because you may be going somewhere gloomy with very little sunlight doesn’t mean you can afford to skimp on the sunscreen. As long as there’s light your skin is going to be exposed to UV rays and sun damage.
#7 Cleansing milk or oil
Regular cleansers can be a little too drying when you hit a wintry climate, so I’d recommend taking a cleansing milk with you to cleanse your skin gently without drying it out. DHC’s Cleansing Milk is one of my favourites, and it works just like a cleansing oil, effectively removing traces of your makeup without leaving behind a greasy residue. Cleansing oils are also a great way to keep your skin’s moisture levels more balanced so your face doesn’t produce excess sebum in order to compensate for the lack of moisture.