Moisture Maximizers

Follow these 5 tips to ditch winter itchy skin

You could wear nothing but cashmere from head to toe. But there’s a less expensive way to address autumn’s dry-skin miseries: Maximize the moisture level in your skin. Here are five good ways to maximize your dry skin in cold weather.

Lather, rinse–and do not repeat. Hot water removes natural oils from your skin that help keep it hydrated. So those long, hot baths rob your skin of moisture, making it dry and itchy. The cure? Shower in lukewarm water for no more than 10 minutes.

Slather while damp. Moisturizers work by trapping water in your skin’s outer layers, so use creams and lotions immediately after exiting the shower. Give yourself a quick towel-dry so you’re not dripping wet and then coat yourself with moisturizer. Need industrial-strength help? Go for ointments or creams rather than lotions, which include more water than oil. (You might even dab on some baby oil or petroleum jelly.)

Spring for a humidifier. In the summertime, your skin can replenish itself by soaking up the moisture in the air. But when the mercury falls, so does the natural humidity. Add the drying effects of indoor heating, and you have trouble. Solution: When you jack up the thermostat, turn on a humidifier, as well.

Drink water. Hydrate your skin from the inside by downing at least eight 8-ounce glasses a day.

Switch soaps. If, despite your best efforts, you’re still plagued by the winter pricklies, switch to a milder soap (look for “moisturizing” on the label). Your choice should also be fragrance-free–it’ll be less irritating.

Was It Something You Ate?

Certain foods can cause flare-ups of contact dermatitis, the catchall term for skin irritation and itching, reports a recent University of Louisville study. Anything related to balsam, including tomatoes, colas, chocolate, and spices such as vanilla, can cause problems. And products containing citrus may also be troublemakers. Try eliminating these foods from your diet for a month. If your condition improves, you’ll know that you’re sensitive to balsam and that you need to avoid them. (Yes, that means chocolate and vanilla. Strawberry, anyone?) If you find that you’re missing your favorite goodies, add them back one at a time and see how your body reacts.

Photo Courtesy of World of Stock | Article By Megan Othersen Gorman

Take 10 Years Off Your Age Right Now, Pt. 1

Properly applied make up can make you look fabulous. But unless it’s done the right way and using the right amount, make up can actually add years to your face.

As a 37 year old former makeup artist, I’ve learned a few simple tips to follow that will help you look younger starting today:


  • Moisturize your skin–face and neck–with a light moisturizer before you apply your makeup…and allow it to sink in, about 5-10 minutes
  • Apply makeup primer BEFORE any makeup. The least expensive and one of the most effective I’ve found (it rivals Smashbox): Monistat Anti-Chafing Gel. It contains the EXACT same ingredients as most of the best makeup primers. Plus, you can pick up a tube at most drugstores for $5
  • Apply your concealer BEFORE foundation. Using your finger or a concealer brush, pat a little concealer under your eyes, around your nose and on any blemishes or discoloration. Concealer before foundation prevents you applying too much foundation.
  • Apply less foundation. And switch to mineral foundation. The better brands and newest formulations (Jane Iredale, Everyday Minerals are some of my favorites) give excellent NATURAL coverage with a light application
  • Apply blush to the apple (round part that pops out when you smile) of your cheeks. For a youthful glow, use a cheek stain or cream blush in a pink, rosy or peach-y color
  • Blend your makeup well and use a light touch

Take 10 Years Off Your Age Right Now, Pt. 2

A few more simple tips to follow that will help you look younger starting today:


  • Groom your eyebrows. Pluck only stray hairs (those are the ones that fall outside your natural eyebrow)
  • Apply eyeliner to the top lash line only. And unless you have medium-or-dark toned skin, DO NOT use black eyeliner. Brown, grey, plum and green are better for fair-to-light toned skin
  • Apply two coats of mascara maximum. One coat for daytime wear is best
  • Curl your lashes. If you don’t like the traditional lash curlers, use an electric version. Sephora’s is terrific and a great deal at $16
  • Avoid shimmery eyeshadow
  • EXCEPTION to above tip: Use a shade-lighter-than-your-skin-tone colored shimmery eyeshadow applied with a light touch to your brow bone (the area just below the outter two-thirds of the eyebrow), AND apply a dab of shimmery ivory shadow to the inner corner of your eyes. These tips really open up the eye area–young!
  • Also, avoid ‘cool’ eyeshadow colors like grey, blue, true green. Opt for colors like pink, peach, gold, warm greens (olive, moss, sage), plum, ivory, brown, taupe

Take 10 Years Off Your Age Right Now, Pt. 3

And even more simple tips that will help you look younger starting today:


  • Use lipgloss or sheer lipstick–NOT lipstick. Use a shade just deeper than your natural lip color. Avoid ‘cool’ colors and dark colors. Instead, choose a sheer pink, peach, rose, mauve or berry
  • Apply lipbalm or clear gloss when not wearing colored gloss. This will keep your lips moist and young-looking all the time

More Anti-Aging Tips:

  • Take care of your skin by cleansing, moisturizing and nourishing it every day using good skin care–P.S. good does not necessarily mean expensive
  • Wear SPF 15 (or higher) sunscreen every day
  • Drink a gallon of water every day
  • Go for a walk at lunch, shoot for 3 times a week. It’s a great excuse to catch up on your window shopping; just don’t take your wallet–debt makes you look and feel old
  • Smile, or better yet, laugh–a lot
  • Eat plenty of protein, complex carbs, fruits and vegetables
  • Manage your stress levels. Take up knitting, painting, piano, yoga or meditation. Find something you like to do and ‘just do it’
  • Get plenty of sleep–sleep is a proven fountain of youth
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