Fight Back Against Flakes
Wearing a liquid foundation is a great way to achieve a dewy glow—but if you apply it over dry, flaky skin the results can be less than satisfactory. For a quick fix, Nicholas Perricone, MD, FACN recommends using a toner formulated with alpha lipoic acid and DMAE, “two excellent antioxidants that act as natural anti-inflammatories. They will remove the flaky skin while refining and toning skin texture.” For longterm protection against peeling, though, Perricone says you have to treat the underlying conditions. “It’s important to make sure you have adequate intake of healthy fats found in fish, fish oil, extra virgin olive oil, etc.,” he says. “While topicals with strong anti-inflammatories can do wonders it is of critical importance to not forget the dietary component.”
Moisturize and Exfoliate Correctly
“Get ready for the dryness of winter by switching from a lightweight ‘summer’ moisturizer to a more emollient version,” says skin care expert June Jacobs, who recommends using one with SPF. “Although the temperature has dropped a bit, UV rays are still present so don’t forget to shield your skin from environmental damage with a broad-spectrum protector.”
Exfoliation is also necessary for a soft, bright complexion but according to Perricone, granular scrubs should be avoided. “Exfoliation should be accomplished using alpha hydroxy acids—mechanical exfoliation can cause further thickening of the outermost layer of the skin, resulting in a rebound effect,” he says, adding that “exfoliators with alpha hydroxy acids can be used during all four seasons.”
For further brightening effects, Jacobs suggests using an alpha hydroxy acid serum that contains mulberry and bearberry extracts, natural lightening agents that help correct sun-induced hyperpigmentation.
Keep Up a Healthy Lifestyle
The colder weather might cause you to go into hibernation mode, but if you feel too sluggish to hit the gym be sure to squeeze in some at-home exercise via workout DVDs or the stairs. “Regular exercise will increase circulation to the face, promoting a glowing complexion,” says Perricone. (Bonus: Stress can lead to “a loss of radiance” and exercise can help relieve tension.)
Perricone also emphasizes the necessity of getting enough sleep: “Nothing is worse for your complexion than sleep deprivation,” he says. “Not getting enough sleep can make you crave sugary, starchy food which can lead to breakouts.” Another glow-getting don’t? Cigarettes. “Smoking restricts the blood flow to the skin and causes dullness as well as premature wrinkles, deep lines, and loss of suppleness,” says Perricone.
How to Shine Brightly—the Unnatural Way
Using a luminizer is a great way to emphasize your already-glowing skin. Celebrity makeup artist Darac suggests going for one that has holographic properties such as “nanospheric optics” shaped in hearts, clovers, and stars (“When light hits them,” he says, “it bounces off in different directions and tricks the eye.”) The cosmetics guru—his clients include Brooke Shields and Lindsay Price—also recommends choosing skin-perfecting makeup with hyaluronic acid, which “provides hydration and protects skin from the dryness of fall and winter.”