Skin health: Trade bikinis for boots, suntan oil for moisturizer

As weather starts to decrease in temperature, it's important for students to keep a healthy skin care routine to avoid having dry skin become problematic. (File Photo Illustration by Nicholas Cady | The Collegian)

As people trade in bikinis and shorts for boots and leggings, they are embracing new routines for the changing seasons. The days of worrying about sweaty, oily skin, sun damage and tanning oil are on hold, but with winter approaching, there are other skin care issues to consider and routines to start.

During the coming cold months, dry skin can be a problem for students who walk to and from classes. Sydney Kroenke, senior in marketing and management, said she alters her skin care routine to include more moisturizer and more ChapStick.

“Normally I don’t put (moisturizer) on at night because it gets greasy, but when my skin gets really dry, I do use it at night,” Kroenke said.

Everyone’s skin is different, and therefore their routines must be too. Brenda Horton, co-owner of Merle Norman Salon and Spa, said “the key to younger-looking skin” is exfoliation and year-round sunscreen use. She also said that drinking plenty of water and maintaining a healthy diet is important for skin health, and adding oranges and lemons to drinking water can supply the skin with much needed vitamin C.

“A lot of people forget that the skin is the largest organ, so a lot of people take care of, eating-wise, their body from the inside and they kind of forget to take care of the outside sometimes,” Horton said. “Your skin absolutely loves vitamin C.”

Healthy skin will have an even color and a smooth texture, is well-hydrated and has normal sensations, meaning it does not burn, itch or sting, according to dermatology expert Heather Brannon’s article “What’s the Difference Between Healthy and Unhealthy Skin?”

The three steps of proper skin care are to cleanse, tone and moisturize. Horton said everyone should follow these steps because not only can unhealthy skin can affect your appearance, but it can also affect overall health.

“Everyone is worried about their appearance,” Horton said. “(But) unhealthy skin means unhealthy all in general … you only get one skin in your lifetime, so you want to take care of it.”

In the Bustle article, “7 Fall Skin Care Tips You Should Start Utilizing Even Before The Summer’s Over,” fashion and beauty writer, Kelly Dougher, recommended adjusting for different seasons by investing in a richer night cream, using a heavier daily moisturizer with sun protection factor, stocking up on body lotion and lip balm, switching to hydrating masks and cleansers, buying a silk pillowcase and paying attention to hands and nails.

“Baby your skin this winter with a silk pillowcase and it will thank you with less redness, dryness and breaking out,” Dougher said in her article.

Tyler Bastian, senior in biology, said he immediately puts lotion on after a shower, and at the end of the day he washes his face, uses a Noxzema pad, applies a small amount of lotion if his skin is dry, and then dabs acne medication on after; however, he said he modifies this routine for different seasons.

“I do change the routine if it’s dry or winter to include more moisturizer so my skin doesn’t dry out and crack,” Bastian said. “I will still wash my face every night and apply lotion and let it dry before I lay my head down. And I always make sure my hair product is minimal before bed so I’m not rolling my face around in product on my pillow.”

For flaky, chapped lips, a gentle lip exfoliant can remove dead skin cells, according to the Paula’s Choice “Expert Advice” column titled “What to do when climate change affects your skin.” After exfoliating, a moisturizing lip balm should be used for “super smooth lips.”

Though winter may cause tanned skin to fade, it doesn’t mean skin health has to diminish also.

“The sooner you take care of the skin, the less you’ll have to do later on in life when you get older,” Horton said.

Hello! I'm Morgan Bell, a senior at K-State majoring in journalism. I'm currently a copy editor and writer for The Collegian.