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Best Ingredients To Revive Dull Winter Skin


Why is winter the season of sparkle—twinkly lights, shimmery clothes, fizzy cocktails? Because all else is dull, dimmed, dehydrated, including your skin. The dry, cold air outside and forced air heating inside is sucking the life out of everything. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) increases, ceramide production decreases, and cell turnover gets sluggish in the dry environmental conditions of winter. Here are the ingredients you need to bring the sparkle to your skin this season.



Winter dehydration causes cells to die off faster, which leads to the buildup of dead skin cells. Alpha hydroxy acids dissolve the “glue” that binds dead skin cells together, encouraging dead cells to slough off to reveal fresh new skin and a brighter complexion. AHAs also promote the production of collagen and elastin, clear and refine pores, and diminish signs of aging.


If your skin is dry or sensitive, lactic acid will give you a gentle, exfoliating polish thanks to its slightly larger molecular size that means it stays mostly on the surface.


Mandelic acid is great for all skin types, particularly darker skin tones. It’s a gentle exfoliator and natural brightener that is absorbed slowly by the skin to keep irritation to a minimum. It’s also anti-inflammatory and antibacterial.


With the smallest molecules of any AHA, glycolic acid acts faster on the skin. Glycolic is good for rejuvenating aging skin, brightening dull skin, clearing acne and reducing hyperpigmentation and melasma. However, glycolic is not for everyone. Sensitive skin may find glycolic irritating.


Humectants & Emollients

With winter’s low humidity pulling moisture from your skin, you need emollient and humectant ingredients to help replenish and repair.


Humectants, things like honey, urea, glycols, glycerin, lactic acid, hyaluronic acid, aloe, and algae extract, draw water from the deeper layers of the dermis and the environment to hydrate skin.


Emollients—lipids, fatty acids, and oils—seal in moisture and improve the skin matrix. The most occlusive include silicones, petrolatum, paraffin and mineral oil. Less occlusive emollients are things like botanical oils including grape seed or olive oil.



Loss of moisture from the skin can also contribute to fine lines and wrinkles. During the winter months, your skin can benefit greatly from collagen boosting peptides to enhance volume and density in the skin. Peptides also encourage the skin to produce more of skin’s natural replenisher, hyaluronic acid.


Vitamin C

A must all-year round, vitamin C is critical for overall skin health and radiance. An essential component in the synthesis of collagen and powerful antioxidant, vitamin C protects skin from free radical damage, diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and brightens discoloration.



Ceramides decrease with transepidermal water loss. These natural lipids form the matrix for healthy cells to keep the skin barrier strong and intact. Niaciniamide increases biosynthesis of ceramides as well as other stratum corneum lipids to bolster the skin barrier and protect against irritation and dryness. You can also help replenish ceramides by eating omega-rich foods like salmon, flax seed, and walnuts, which strengthen skin cells from the inside out.



Our Favorite Winter Skin Revivalists:

Cleansing Milk

An ultra gentle, moisture rich cleanser with antioxidant grape seed oil to leave skin soothed, supple and radiantly clean. Rosacea Safe. 


Skin Nourishing Toner

A hydrating cocktail of antioxidant and ultra-nourishing ingredients including mandelic acid, niacinamide, and rosehip oil to prep, balance, renew and refine.  Ideal for sensitive or rosacea-affected skin.


Spin Trap Antioxidant Serum

The synergistic strength of vitamins C and E, plus niacinamide make this brightening antioxidant shield a daily requisite. Scavenges free radicals, stimulates cellular repair, and helps prevent further UV damage.


Rejuv Rx Peptide Concentrate

Peptides, lactic acid, and niacinamide make this silky smooth firming and lifting serum the perfect winter companion. A 2017 Dermascope Magazine Aestheticians’ Choice Award winner.


Marine Skin Nourishing Cream

Packed with ultra nourishing ingredients including grape seed oil, oat protein, sea algae, and whole leaf aloe, this intensely hydrating formula returns suppleness and elasticity to winter-weary skin.


MaxiLip Lip Plumper

Get emollient lip protection against the dry winter weather, plus volumizing appeal with this dramatic semi-permanent, collagen-boosting lip treatment.



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