How to take care of your skin and hair in winter

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bunnyI don’t know about you, but this time of year I notice my skin and hair change.

When you look to nature, you can see this happens to the animals too – in spring and autumn.

Our bunny’s coat is changing; it now looks patchy and greasy but I know in a couple of weeks time she’ll proudly be showing off her fluffy winter ensemble which will be in peak condition.

My skin gets very dry and my hair, a bit like bunny’s, get lank. It also comes out in hand fulls. Now I’m used to it it no longer concerns me, but you can imagine what I went through the first time it happened!

I use minimal products on my skin and hair anyway, but this time of year I make a few changes. I use more intensive conditioning treatments on my hair and thicker oils on my skin.

My skincare routine goes along the lines of using clay on my face which is so gentle and non-stripping that I seldom need any form of moisturiser. If I do need anything (I find the chlorine in the water strips my skin), I use a couple of drops of light oil such as grapeseed.

This time of year though I step up to heavier oils such as avocado or rosehip which really nourish and feed the skin.

On my hair I use clay too, but in the winter I switch to a nourishing shampoo which contains evening primrose oil and take time to do hot oil treatments – olive oil from the kitchen will do for this; there is no need for anything fancy! Just warm the oil up, slather it on your hair, wrap in a towel and relax for 20 minutes before shampooing off.

I spend time after an evening bath rubbing oils onto my body. This helps prevent my skin going dry and boosts circulation; and let’s face it, it’s just such a lovely thing to do. The ayuverdic tradition includes Abhyanga – the anointing of the body with oil – which, done daily, is reputed to have numerous health and beauty benefits.

Taking time to nurture our selves has a knock on effect on the immune system and overall sense of well being. I’m prone to depression, so it’s essential I take time out for me; especially this time of year when the nights are longer and the days more grey.

If you’re ready to take better care of your skin and hair, here are some tips:

  • Use organic skincare products which are free from toxic chemicals that can strip your skin of their natural oils.
  • Ask yourself if you can simplify your routine. I noticed that the cleanser and toner I was using were so harsh, I needed moisturiser. It was a revelation to realise that gentler products don’t strip the natural oils from your skin.
  • Give yourself a massage, even if it’s just once a week on your feet. A simple one is to warm up some oil, massage into your feet and put a pair of cosy socks on before going to bed.
  • Invest in a natural bristle brush – you’ll prevent static and can use it to evenly distribute the oils through your hair. You’ll also reduce the risk of your hair breaking.
  • It’s simple to make your own hot oil treatment for your hair – warm up some olive oil, add a couple of drops of nourishing essential oils such as lavender and geranium, apply to the hair, wrap in a towel and relax.
  • Skin brushing is a great way to eliminate toxins. Get a natural bristle brush and brush your DRY skin from the extremities towards the heart before having a warm bath.

What about you – how do you take care of your skin and hair when the seasons change?

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