Skincare Tips for the Changing Seasons

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Where I live, the weather changes faster than the elite runners at the Boston Marathon, especially this time of year.

One minute, I’m in flip flops, the next minute I’m covering myself in blankets and pulling out sweaters that most likely smell like moth balls.

In addition to the wardrobe changes, my skin definitely takes a hit.
My once ultra-shiny forehead (this I don’t miss) is replaced with dry, patchy spots and I usually have to revamp my cleanser, moisturizer, etc.

In this vein I’m not alone. New York dermatologist and author of the book Skin Rules Dr. Debra Jaliman says changing seasons definitely means changing skin and offers up her expertise on the topic.

“It’s important to change cleansers as we go from summer into fall. For example, from an exfoliating one to a mild one. So avoid ingredients with glycolic or salicylic acid which would be more drying. It’s better to make these changes before winter starts in the fall so it gives your skin a chance to adjust.You can also change the weight of your moisturizer. So change from a serum to a lotion or a cream. The same with the sunscreen and your anti-aging products.”

In my case I’ve noticed that I tend to go “lighter” in terms of moisturizer in the summer– since I sweat a lot of it off. When the temperature starts to dip I slather on a sufficient amount of cream (particularly at night) to avoid the dryness in my face.

“When the weather changes the skin gets drier and flakier and can even get red. If you want to reverse sun damage you can use products with retinol every night. Best to use ones with hyaluronic acid, so your skin doesn’t get dry.

They will improve fine lines, improve texture, and even skin color (even out brown discoloration). You can even use niacin, which will also reverse sun damage as well. Always use a broad spectrum sunscreen that blocks UVA/UVB rays SPF 30. Look for zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or mexoryl.”
Dr. Jaliman also cautions that you pay special attention to skin changes. These variations in texture, look and feel could indicate a trip beyond your local drug store.

“If you notice areas of your skin that are really dark, irregularly bordered, bleed, itch or changes that you don’t like aesthetically and can’t reverse with products see a dermatologist. There are so many modalities available like lasers, IPL (intense pulsed light), light peels, microdermabrasion ) which can really make a difference.”

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Tara Weng is  a media consultant with a focus on medical and consumer topics. Her professional experience includes a stint as a medical/features producer at the NBC affiliate in Boston, MA and a media relations position at a top teaching hospital in Boston. Tara has also done public relations consulting work and has written for several online and print media outlets. She is a wife and a mother to two children (who are fantastic) and an enthusiastic New England sports fan.


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