Sunny or not: Don’t forget your sunscreen this winter

Sunscreen is still a must even during the winter.

gray clouds across skySome UV rays can penetrate through clouds and UVA can penetrate through window glass. So, wear your sunscreen everyday, sunny or not!  We recommend purchasing a sunscreen like Elta MD UV Clear. It moisturizes as well as helps prevent acne flare ups and has shown to have anti-aging properties.

Dr. Norma Magee, a dermatologist at The Austin Diagnostic Clinic in Round Rock, has some tips for common winter skin issues.

Cleanse and moisturize

Skin tends to become drier because of the lack of humidity and the cold during the winter.  Use mild cleansers and moisturizers to prevent dryness.  Some cleansers and moisturizers include ceramides to help repair the skin and hyaluronic acid to hydrate.  A good over-the-counter cleanser and moisturizers is Cerave Ceramide.

For severe dryness, I recommend a heavier moisturizer with occlusive properties, like Aquaphor.  To trap in moisture, apply after washing with a mild cleanser. Only use a small amount of Aquaphor for a short period of time to prevent clogging pores.

Individuals, who are on an anti-aging regimen or acne treatment regimen, may notice that their skin can become redder and peel during the winter.  Dilute your medication with a small amount of bland moisturizer like Cetaphil during this time. This may help.

To help prevent hands from becoming overly dry, use a moisturizer specifically made for hands.  Neutrogena Norwegian hand formula is a little thick but blends in well and should be applied at night.  For best results, apply to hands after every hand wash.

If you have a rash that doesn’t heal after using moisturizers and over-the-counter treatments, see your dermatologist for further evaluation. Some skin conditions require prescription strength medications.