Ahhhh... Smooth, hydrated skin and scalp! Why are you so difficult to find in winter!!!! Whether we are living in humid or arid climates, there are many skin abuses we have to endure until the next season. While warm and inside, our skin and respiratory get a blast from that dry heated air. Privileged as it is to be warm, the air is leaving our throat and skin irritated. When out in the elements the wind chill can bite the skin causing dry patches or sores. Depending on outdoor exposure, winter sun can also reflect off snow, causing more damage to sensitized skin. Read ahead for remedies to get you through!
My head is hiding under layers of winter protection? Is yours? Stop! Give that scalp a treat-- BRUSH IT! Even better, hand that brush over to a friend or stylist to do the healing for you. Our skin sees regular exfoliation from fabrics and scrubs while our scalp is overlooked. :-(
Brush your hair often or as little as you prefer (depending on your lifestyle). Try to give your scalp a good brush each time before you shower. This will exfoliate your scalp and bring the naturally conditioning sebum (or oil) from the roots to your ends. Brushing before you rinse can keep your texture intact and remove excess hair that clogs drains. Your housemates will thank you! Finally, brush your hair while it's dry to prevent further breakage (hair is at it's weakest, wet). Plus all that exfoliated skin will be rinsed down the drain and nobody has to see it except for those we love and trust. However, don't be ashamed of all the cool stuff our bodies can do!
I use an Acca Kappa boar & nylon bristle brush (vegan alternative, Acca Kappa Protection Brush). The nylon helps to detangle, the boar bristles polish, the rubber cushion absorbs resistance; protecting the hair from breakage and the bristle density exfoliates the scalp. I can use my Acca Kappa brushes for years before I have to replace them. Cutting back on my consumption and environmental impact.
CURL TIP!!Choosing to brush dry hair before
rinsing will protect the curl pattern.
When hair is wet, I have found using brushes (other than a wide tooth comb) on curly textures I lose the curl pattern
My suggestion, have the curl already intact before getting out of the shower or shampoo bowl. Meaning, there is already formed waves or ringlets. Please see my blog posts about styling curl.
Book an appointment for a scalp treatment with (ME!) any stylist in your area! It's sooo nice! Get in touch with your inner primate! Try a scalp treatment at home. Invite a friend or go it alone. Start by dividing your hair into four sections, more if your hair is really thick. One section at a time, take 1/2" partings. Brush your scalp in the direction of those partings three or more times. Think, Ally Sheedy in The Breakfast Club!
Add a healing oil to your scalp for some soooooothing benefits. I would use tea tree or lavender oil. For more healing moisture infuse lavender, tea tree (or both) with coconut oil. You can apply this mixture to the scalp anytime it's feeling dry, tight, flaky or itchy.
So far this winter I have already had dry, red or rough patches on my face or body. They weren't easy to rehydrate but I got through it. Here are suggestions for keeping your skin smooth.
In my daily routine I drink a full glass of water when I wake up, before anything else (except maybe to pee)! I learned this tip from reading about raw diets. Rehydrating after a long rest just makes sense! I cut back on large, daily amounts of dehydrating coffee. I drink loose-leaf green tea for crash-free caffeine or matcha green tea for it's amazing health benefits and slow-release caffeine. Don't deprive yourself of your espresso or coffee ritual, just not every day. Try tea for a week and feel the difference. Drink water, spare the additives, it's the key to most of our physical ailments and will prevent dull, dry, or prematurely aged skin. Celebrate those wrinkles in time!:-)
SCIENCE SIDE NOTE The skin's natural PH is 5.5 ....so do what you can to keep your skin at 5.5. Tap water is generally anywhere from 6.5 to 9.5. Changing the levels of PH for your skin can cause it to dry out. Rinse with water less often to protect your skin, cut back on water waste, save money and prolong product usage. Be gentle to the skin, especially on the face
FORGET ALL YOU KNOW ABOUT WASHING YOUR FACE Find your skin some help now and try
Live Crude Personal Care is a small batch company founded by Denise Cartwright, a master esthetician with loads of knowledge in health and beauty. There is so much valuable information on the Live Crude website. My favorite lesson learned is the real reason behind combination skin. Don't have Live Crude products yet, use olive or coconut oil (the greener the better) until then!
FOR THE WHOLE BODY
For rehydrating my body (face included), my partner Nick and I (mostly Nick) made a blend of coco butter, shae butter and jojoba oil. For more intense rehydration it's 100% shae butter, sometimes in excess to make a protective barrier from the outside winds.