How to Stay Radiant as the Season Changes
Along with colorful leaves and all-things pumpkin spice, Fall brings chilly weather that can wreak havoc on your skin. As temperatures start to drop in most parts of the country, the air becomes less humid. For many of us the seasonal change from the warm summer months into a colder dryer period can cause skin issues to flare up.
It’s not uncommon to see an increase in acne, breakouts, skin sensitivity, and dryness during this time. Our skin changes every day based on our lifestyle and our environment, so it makes sense that a shift in seasons could affect your glow. This is just another example of how our skin and its needs are dynamic and not tied to being one, static skin type!
And while changing skin needs may be unavoidable, having healthy and nourished skin shouldn’t be impossible! Here are some Fall skincare tips for staying radiant even as the season changes.
Why does a change in season affect your skin?
To explain why seasonal changes affect the skin we need to understand the importance of our skin barrier. The skin barrier is the outermost layer of your skin, acting as a protective shield against harmful elements, while locking in moisture. Damage to the skin barrier occurs when there is a loss of moisture or nutrients, creating cracks which allow irritants to penetrate the skin barrier.
A healthy skin barrier looks like a smooth, clear, even complexion. A damaged skin barrier can result in breakouts, dryness, tightness, redness, irritation, rashes, broken capillaries, and other symptoms that can often be attributed to having sensitive skin.
Changes in humidity and temperature are factors that affect the health of the skin barrier. A study published by the British Journal of Dermatology shows a link between climate changes and changes in skin barrier cell texture. During the autumn season, the temperature might be warmer one day and significantly drop the next, creating an inconsistent environment.
Since skin likes consistency, autumn’s fluctuations in weather trigger the skin to constantly adjust in an attempt for balance. Autumn also brings less humidity in comparison to the summer months, and this loss of hydration can mean dryer and more delicate skin. This in turn leads to the disruption of the skin’s outer layer, which is why we might experience sensitivity, inflammation, acne, and redness with a change of seasons.
What steps should I include in my Fall skincare routine?
Now that we understand how the environment is impacting our skin, we can dive into the different ways to help maintain healthy skin throughout seasonal transitions.
Don't skip cleansing - Even if you feel like your skin is dry, you still need to cleanse your skin every day. A gentle cleanser helps remove dirt and oil that can lead to breakouts. It can also help remove dead skin cells that build up and clog pores.
Try our Defend Purifying Cleanser to cleanse while maintaining your skin’s moisture. If you feel like the dead skin is really building up, consider using a gentle exfoliator once or twice a week. But don't overdo it! Too much exfoliation can disrupt your skin barrier.
Implement a toner - If you aren’t already using a toner, add one to your Fall skincare routine after cleansing and before applying a moisturizer. This will help your skin barrier stay balanced throughout fluctuations in the weather. A toner will also help combat dryness by helping the skin retain moisture.
Our Hydrate Moisturizing Toner helps restore moisture and encourages your skin to repair damage that may have occurred from the change in seasons. It contains Mallow Root, which has antioxidant and calming properties to calm and soothe rough, dry skin. Toners also help prep your skin for the rest of your routine, making your serums and moisturizer more effective.
Stay Hydrated - Be sure to keep your skin nourished and moisturized -- even those of you who have oily skin. A hydrated moisture barrier is a healthy and happy skin barrier!
For some, hydration can be accomplished with a combination of a hydrating face serum with hyaluronic acid and a daily moisturizer. Others might want to switch to a heavier moisturizer as the temperatures get colder. A great ingredient to look for is shea butter, which you can find in our Calm Daily Moisturizer. And don't forget your eye cream for that delicate under-eye area!
Don't forget your sunscreen - Even though summer has ended, the sun's harmful UV rays can still cause sun damage. Broad spectrum sunscreen is always a must, no matter the season!
What other steps can I take to care for my skin as the seasons change?
Besides changing up your Fall skincare routine, there are other things you can do to ensure radiant and smooth skin as the weather gets cooler.
Drink enough water – When it comes to our skin, hydration is crucial! To combat the dip in humidity, it’s important to ensure our skin is still receiving the hydration it needs to maintain a healthy skin barrier.
Consider a humidifier – Humidifiers force moisture into the air, which keeps your environment more hydrated, and this, in turn, helps your skin barrier properly do its job.
Listen to your skin – Everyone’s skin is reacting to its own set of unique external and internal conditions based on your environment, lifestyle, stress levels, and diet. Seasonal change is just one element that factors into this, affecting everyone differently and to varying degrees.
Therefore, before implementing other people’s recommendations, it’s important to listen to your skin needs, observe how it looks and feels, and respond accordingly. If your skin is feeling especially dry, address that by switching to a thicker moisturizer or by adding a hydrating face mask to your routine.
So there you have it, some easy ways to adapt your skin care routine and help your skin stay radiant as the season changes to Fall!
About the author, Jasmin Figueroa
Jasmin is an accomplished formulation scientist and skin health expert who has spent her career listening to consumers and developing products that rock. A founding member of the Nuria community, she loves traveling with her family, chilling with her friends at the beach, and will totally judge you if you don’t wear SPF.