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As we leave winter behind us, we’ve felt the cold temperatures and harsh winds strip our skin of moisture. Even as we get closer to warmer weather, it is crucial to continue to take good care of your dry skin. One of our expert dermatologists and laser surgeons, Dr. Sunny Walia, FAAD, offers several treatments to hydrate and protect the skin. However, even our patients that receive these treatments need to keep up their skin maintenance in these colder months. For this reason, Dr. Walia wants to share her top eight cold weather skin care tips to ensure our patients’ skin stays tight, moisturized, and protected from the elements.

Invest in a humidifier

While you are sleeping, your room can dry out and cause you to wake up with dry skin, and an irritated throat and nose. A cold-air humidifier will add moisture to the air and create a more comfortable and healthy environment for your skin and airways.

Exfoliate (but don’t over exfoliate)

While this may seem contradictory at first, exfoliating too often in the winter can break down your skin’s natural barrier and actually cause it to dry out even more. Dr. Walia recommends exfoliating about once a week to remove excess dirt and dead skin. We also offer dermaplaning treatments in our office for deep, controlled exfoliation administered by a professional!

Use an antioxidant every morning

Dr. Walia encourages patients to apply a daily antioxidant to their face in an outward circular motion to provide environmental protection while also promoting anti aging and firmer skin. Our favorite antioxidant here at the Aesthetic & Dermatology Center is Skinceuticals C E Ferulic®! 

Keep using your retinol/retinoid products, but decrease the frequency.  

To continue promoting the production of collagen, continue applying retinoid/retinol products as they are still vital for optimal skin health. However, Dr. Walia suggests reducing the frequency to every third night. She also notes that you may use a hyaluronic acid-based moisturizer in addition to these products if necessary either underneath or on top of the retinoid product to increase tolerability and decrease irritation.


Dr. Walia cannot stress enough how important it is to moisturize your skin everyday, especially during the colder, drier months of the year. Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, jojoba oil, or olive oil to protect and nourish your skin. Our favorite moisturizer is Skinceuticals Triple Lipid Moisture!

Switch to a milder facial cleanser in the winter 

Even if you have oily skin, Dr. Walia recommends switching to a mild hydrating cleanser during colder months. If you do have oily skin, you can alternate between a gentler cleanser and an acid or gel cleanser. Make sure to wash your face with clean hands (try not to use a loofah or washcloth) in lukewarm to cool water as hot water and over-exfoliation can further dry out the skin.

Focus on your eyes

Currently, we wear face masks everyday, so now is the perfect time to accentuate your eyes — the part of your face that people see the most! For Dr. Walia’s tips on how to deal with any breakouts caused by your facemask, visit What is “Maskne”: Caring for your skin while wearing a facemask.  Remember to use an eye cream daily for your eyes. A healing ointment such as Aquaphor or Cerave can be used as well to lock in additional moisture.  

Apply sunscreen everyday on your face, ears, neck and hands.  

Although sunscreen may seem unnecessary when the sun isn’t shining as bright and sets earlier, it is crucial to your skin’s health. Ultraviolet radiation presents a very real threat even on those darker winter days! Dr. Walia suggests applying mineral sunscreen every morning after cleansing your face prior to applying makeup, which we have in stock at the Aesthetic & Dermatology Center. 

For more cold weather skin care tips and advise, you can schedule a consult with Dr. Walia at (301) 610-0663 or you can schedule a complimentary cosmetic consult! The information contained in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute professional medical advice.