7 Products You’ll Need to Look Your Best This Winter
Even before the first snowfall, you know it’s winter. The air smells like a mixture of pine trees and eggnog; you hear the jingles of the Salvation Army’s red donation bins; and the streets are glistening with Christmas lights. As for your hair and skin? Not so jolly. Year after year, you find yourself entering the most wonderful time of the year with problem skin and dry hair. But, as every grooming expert knows, you won’t have to spend the whole season looking like a lump of coal. Instead, you just need a new arsenal of winter weather-fighting products. Read on for our picks that will cure your grooming blues.
1. Dandruff shampoo
The chillier months ahead are simultaneously a blessing and a curse for your hair. Sure, you’ll notice your hair isn’t as frizzy as it is after a few minutes with summer’s debilitating humidity, and some curly-haired people may even notice their mane is slightly straighter during winter. The downside? Dandruff. Whether or not yours is perpetually dry, your scalp is more prone to those flakes in the bitter cold. This season, try Hydrate’s shampoo. Free of sulfates and 100% natural, this pick is geared to soften your scalp and stimulate cell growth. Smooth and luscious locks this winter? We’re on board.
2. Hair mask
“Don’t leave the house with your hair wet,” your mom probably told you every time you left for high school in a hurry. In this scenario, mother is right: a damp head in the middle of the winter is a surefire way to catch a cold. And lo, you whip out a blow dryer when you’re in a hurry; however, that tends to lead to dry, straw-like hair. You may have bid farewell to that pesky dandruff with Hydrate’s shampoo, but there’s no way you’re leaving the house looking like a flake-free scare crow. Enter American Crew’s leave-in conditioner. Not only does this one moisturize your hair and scalp, it also protects your mane from those UV rays (which are present, regardless of the weather). And with a minty scent, this concoction will smell just like a candy cane.
3. Acne treatment
Anyone who’s battled with acne knows that even the smallest anomaly will wreak havoc on your skin, and the weather is no exception. According to VasseurBeauty.com, the temperamental weather and seasonal transitions can leave your skin “confused, unbalanced, and prone to blemishes.” Luckily, you don’t have to wait for your nightly face washing ritual to fight the pimples. Instead, pick up Murad’s Acne Spot Fast Fix treatment. With 3.5% Benzoyl Peroxide, this gel is potent but won’t cause further skin problems. Just dab a bit on before that stressful meeting and the concoction will help minimize redness, inflammation, and acne-causing bacteria. But if you want to do double-duty with your nightly face ritual, couple it with Murad’s Acne Clearing Solution.
4. Beard balm
Just like your hair, your beard may experience some dryness this winter. And while you may have a few drops of your beard mask left over from Movember, we recommend stocking up on this useful product. After all, growing a beard requires lots of tender loving care, and nobody wants to show off a beard that looks like the bottom of a broom. Think of Liberty Premium Grooming Company’s beard balm as a facial hair blessing. A healthy blend of organic oils – babassu, eucalyptus, argan, and coconut, for example — creates a powerful concoction to keep your whiskers silky smooth. With a helping of beeswax, you’ll also be able to keep your beard well shaped instead of looking like an unkempt nomad. And did we mention that the smell is heavenly? After all, you’re slathering eucalyptus and coconut right underneath your nostrils. Consider us sold.
5. Face moisturizer
Unless you’re an A-List celebrity, the holiday season is probably one of the most photographed times of the year for you. There’s a litany of events: Thanksgiving, taking that dreaded annual family photo, holiday parties, and all your New Year’s Eve debauchery. But looking back on these pictures won’t be nearly as fun if you can easily spot all those dry patches on your face. That’s right, dear reader: Along with rosy cheeks and the occasional runny nose, winter tends to suck the moisturize right out of your face. Not unless you add a healthy dose yourself. We love this pick from Radha Beauty for a number of reasons. With ingredients such as shea butter, aloe, and jojoba oil, think of this potent cream as a greener alternative to hydrating your skin. And with 2.5% retinol, this will also help combat those signs of aging. After all, regardless of age, we’re all constantly searching for the foundation of youth.
6. Lip balm
Between the mistletoe and securing your New Year’s Eve kiss, we have a feeling you’ll be doing a lot of smooching this season. Regardless of whether you’re mouth to mouth with your significant other, a fling, or a new crush, one thing’s for certain: They won’t want to make out with lips that feel like sandpaper. Gross. There are several frilly picks to choose from, but sometimes you need a basic, yet effective, balm. Luckily, Aquaphor’s reporting for duty. This pick is packed with Shea Butter and Vitamin E, which will help hydrate even the driest lips. And with their special formula, this pick seals in moisturize to create long-term results. An added bonus? Aquaphor’s Lip Repair balm is free of dyes and fragrances, plus it has a SPF 30 rating. Pucker up, gents.
7. Body lotion
Don’t be fooled by all those layers you wear in the winter: The cool air always has a way of draining moisture away from your arms and legs. Sure, any old face moisturizer will work for the rest of your body, but we understand that piling the same cream you use for your cheeks on your, erm, other cheeks is cringe-worthy. For a lotion that works, pick up a bottle of Lubriderm’s Intense Skin Repair Calming Relief Lotion. Developed by dermatologists, this pick is geared to help remedy dry, itchy skin. And with its patented Hydralease™ technology, it claims to leave your skin hydrated for 24 hours. Does it get any better? The easy-to-use pump is for leaving on your desk at work.
Follow Kelsey on Twitter @KMulvs