I'm an absolute savage when it comes to showering in Winter. I'm one of those people who basically doesn't even turn on the cold tap, I just stand there sadistically scalding my skin, to the point where when I step out of the shower my skin is red raw. Yikes!
I know what you're thinking:
WTF I can relate. But guys, we must stop. Long, hot showers are no good for our skin. Not only is it super drying and irritating for our skin, it can also lead to problems with our hair health.
Don't worry, I didn't want to believe it either, that was until I spoke to Biologi's dermal specialist, Lucy Macdougald, who makes an excellent case for turning the cold tap on, even just a little more than usual in Winter.
POPSUGAR Australia: What kind of damage can long, hot showers do to our skin?
Lucy: Whilst long hot showers and baths can feel amazing during the winter months, unfortunately they're not so amazing for the skin. Firstly, it will dry out the skin because it prevents skin from locking in moisture, which can cause irritation, but it can also inflame the skin which can cause an array of issues from itching and redness. Excessive hot water usage can disrupt the skin's natural balance of moisture. It can damage the keratin cells that are located in the epidermis, stripping the skin's surface of its natural oils which are vital for the skin to regenerate.
PS: If it's bad for our skin, is it also bad for our scalp?
Lucy: Absolutely! Excessively hot water can cause the same kind of problems for the skin on your scalp — as well as dry out your hair. This can lead to problems with your hair health, making it brittle and more prone to breakage.
PS: If we are having warmer showers that usual (guilty), how can we help keep our skin barriers healthy and avoid irritating/damaging the skin?
Lucy: Try to limit your hot showers and baths as much as you can, or at the very least, limit the amount of time you spend in them. Reduce the temp of the water wherever possible and also be mindful of using any products that will strip your skin even further. Things like harsh cleansers and exfoliants can strip the skin, so mix up your skincare routine during this time. Instead try a gentle cleanser like Biologi's new Bc Refresh Cleanser. Harnessing the untouched power of soapberry extract, Biologi has achieved what was previously thought impossible and created a cleanser free from synthetic surfactants and foaming agents. Biologi's Bc Refresh Cleanser is unlike anything you've ever tried before it not only cleanses the skin, but its fully active ingredient works like a serum would, offering hydration, antioxidant protection and repairing of cells deep within the dermal layers. These kinds of products are great because you do need to replace the loss of moisture to your skin that's happened as a result of excessive hot water usage.
PS: How often should we be doing full body scrubs/exfoliating in Winter ?
Lucy: Try to limit to just once per week, unless a dermatologist or skin specialist has recommended otherwise. Everyone's skin is different however as a general rule exfoliating once a week should be more than enough. Exfoliation is an essential part of a skincare routine because it encourages a healthy cellular turnover however doing it too often can lead to irritation. Whilst grainy scrubs can be popular, overuse of these types of products can cause micro-tears that lead to dryness and irritation. Scrubbing your skin too hard with abrasive products strips the outer layers of your skin and tears away the natural oils that your skin needs to function properly.
PS: Any after-shower skincare tips or products we should be using to keep our skin healthy and hydrated?
Lucy: Yes — a great tip is to apply your skincare products straight after the shower. The reason for this is because the steam and warm water in the shower will allow your pores to open up, thus making your skin to be more susceptible to your skincare products because your pores are open. We recommend Biologi's Bf Body Hydration Serum ($14-$72) which can be used all over the face and body (even on your hair)! Containing the single ingredient of Australian finger Lime, the Bf Serum contains a unique blend of fruit acids and vitamin C that hydrate, soothe and repair, leaving the skin feeling smooth and supple. It not only offers full body and face hydration, it will also repair the skin barrier, help to reduce cellulite and dimples, provide anti-oxidant protection from damaging free radicals and reduce damage caused by long-term over-exposure to the sun.
If your skin feels like it needs a double hit of moisture, we also recommend Biologi's Br Organic Rosehip ($22.40, originally $28) oil over the top. Delivering a potent synergy of organic actives required for skin health, Br is the most effective oil to use in conjunction with Biologi serums. Gentle enough to use on sensitised skin types but powerful enough to achieve maximum results, Br Rosehip Oil rejuvenates the skin just as it does the plant. Harnessing the pure power of Rosa canina, it promotes the skins internal hydration and protective processes to support healthy cellular turnover. Use Biologi's Br Organic Rosehip Oil on the face and body for hydration, anti-inflammatory, improve the colour and texture of scars, reduce blemishes, anti-ageing.