Beauty balms, decoded
The colder months can leave even the hardiest of skin sensitive and crying out for moisture.
THE FIX: Support your moisturiser with a gentle balm cleanser – cleansing is an important step that can help maintain the integrity of the skin barrier. ‘Try something with vitamin C, so plant extracts and phenols, which includes essential oils like orange and lemon,’ says aesthetics and dermatology nurse Emma Coleman. They have high detoxifying properties and give pores a deep cleanse. Pair with anti-inflammatories such as amaranth or arnica to relieve puffiness. Dark berries like cranberry and blackcurrant are a good option as they’re rich in antioxidant vitamins C and E.’
TRY: Green People Age Defy+ Ultimate Wonder Balm (£32, 50ml). Loaded with orange peel, cranberry seed oil and vitamin E, this multi-purpose beauty balm melts away make-up while replenishing skin.
Gloved or not, hands are likely to be plagued by peeling cuticles and persistent cracking during winter.
THE FIX: Tackle extra-rough patches with a rich, emollient hand cream, says Coleman. ‘Look for coconut oil and shea butter, natural extracts that help skin hold onto moisture. Others that can help include rose, rosehip and sunflower oil.’ For an extra-moisturising treatment that helps repair dry hands, apply hand cream before bed, slip on cotton gloves and wear overnight.
TRY: Balmonds Intensive Hand Cream (£10.99, 50ml). More than an ordinary hand cream, this rich, shea butter-based formula is enhanced with sunflower oil and chamomile to soothe hardworking hands.
The skin on the lips is thinner and more delicate than elsewhere, making chapping commonplace.
THE FIX: ‘This is all about protecting from pollutants, as well as the wind and cold air,’ says Coleman. ‘You want something high in vitamin E – almond and soya bean oils are great options. Mango butter is good, too, as it’s highly emollient.’
TRY: Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Lip Balm Mango (£3.99, 4.25g). Infused with mango butter and supercharged with soya bean and sunflower oils, this handy lip balm nourishes even the most parched pouts.
Dry elbows, cracked heels, you name it – thirsty winter skin can crop up anywhere.
THE FIX: ‘The skin in these areas can get quite crusty, so we want to encourage cell renewal and desquamation, which is essentially getting rid of dead skin,’ says Coleman. ‘To help our skin replenish, apply something high in lipids, so natural ceramides. Cedarwood and kiwi seed oils encourage lipid transport – helping to keep the skin barrier impermeable and strong.’