1/3/2023 | By Donna Brody

Not only does winter introduce seasonal challenges to our skin and hair, it can be a tempting time to ignore simple skin and hair care. These feel-good winter beauty tips can perk up your appearance and make you feel better, too.

Colder temps and shorter daylight hours, circulating viruses, and slim social calendars make it easy to overlook caring for your appearance as you instead opt for curling up on the couch in comfortable pjs or sweats to wait for spring.

Unfortunately, this strategy can be detrimental to your mental health says the Kentucky Counseling Center in Louisville. “There is a connection between feeling good and looking good, as the latter makes you feel confident, brave, powerful, and healthier. The truth of the matter is that you will feel better if you’re confident about your overall appearance.”

Dry skin can be itchy and uncomfortable, too, from head to toe.

For these reasons, an early winter slump might be the best reason to spend some “me time” trying out some new skin, hair, nail, and make-up techniques.

“Self-care is not vanity,” the center continues. “It’s about finding the balance between inner and outer beauty. That’s why many mental health blogs recommend that taking care or pampering yourself is always a good tip to feel great physically, emotionally, and mentally.”

Not surprising, most spas list the winter months as their slowest time of year. That’s good news for you since it might mean lower prices on popular treatments like facials, massages, and other therapies. But, if time at a spa doesn’t fit your budget or your schedule, there are spa-like treatments and winter beauty tips for make-up and hair that you can try out at home.

Winter beauty tips

Care for your complexion

Check out these winter beauty tips for a fresher, healthier complexion all season long.

  • Try introducing cold water to revive lackluster skin. Instead of filling your sink with ice cubes, though, wash your face as usual and then splash it with very cold water to bring back a healthy glow.
  • Use steam to clean your face. Fill a bowl with hot water, add a couple drops of essential oils, then drape a towel over your head and lean over the bowl for a few minutes.
  • Use the occasional facial mask to help promote glowing skin.
  • Follow any facial cleansing with a quality moisturizer.

Related: A capsule wardrobe for timeless style

Unpuff those puffy eyes

Puffy eyes are unflattering, especially when due to lack of sleep. If getting more sleep is not a realistic option, there are techniques to treat the issue. A cucumber compress or slices of cucumber placed on the eyes is one time-tested technique. Other alternatives are placing raw potato slices or green tea bags over your eyes for five minutes. According to Beauty Cooks Kisses, the caffeine and antioxidants in tea can help drain lymphatic fluid around the eyes.

Pamper your hair and scalp

Man looking in the mirror, combing his hair and smiling. Image by Ruslan Huzau.

Another area that might need extra loving care in winter is hair and scalp. Hair Club salon notes that frigid winter air, whipping winds, static electricity, and dry indoor heat take a toll on all types and textures of hair. Some winter beauty tips for healthier hair?

  • Wear a hat when out in the elements.
  • Get regular trims.
  • Use a humidifier.
  • Avoid very hot water when showering, intense heat when styling, and wet hair when going outside.
  • Deep condition hair once a week.
  • Avoid daily hair washing.

Show your hands and feet some love

Although soft hands and feet and nicely manicured finger and toenails might seem more important when showcased in warm summer months, good hand, feet, and nail care is essential all year round.

A paraffin wax treatment can be done at a spa or at home to keep your hands moist.

Paraffin wax is a natural emollient, helping to make skin supple and soft, says Healthline. “It adds moisture and continues to boost the moisture levels of the skin after the treatment is complete. It can also help open pores and remove dead skin cells” to make skin look fresher and feel smoother. A paraffin wax treatment can also help relieve hand pain in people with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and other joint mobility issues.

An at-home paraffin bath allows you to treat your hands and feel regularly without the spa price tag. If your goal is to treat pain as well as skin, a larger receptacle allows you to warm up your wrists and ankles, too.

Related: Classic clothing essentials for senior women

An easier technique is to slather your hands and feet in moisturizer, slip into plastic gloves or bags and then into microwave-warmed arthritis mittens or spa mittens and booties.

Hand-care tips from the Look Good Feel Better Foundation, tailored for people battling cancer but useful for all of us, include:

  • Wear rubber gloves when doing dishes or cleaning.
  • Push cuticles back instead of cutting them.
  • Use cuticle cream or olive oil to moisturize your hands and around your nails to help you avoid hang nails or splitting.
  • Use formaldehyde-free polish.

Use carefully chosen cosmetics

Woman of color applying moisturizer. Image by Yuri Arcurs. Cold brings seasonal challenges to skin and hair. These feel-good winter beauty tips can perk up your appearance but your mental health.

Finally, keep your sun-kissed summer glow and your make-up fresh by trying these cosmetic tips from Parents Lifestyle this winter.

  • A foundation with a built-in moisturizer and a cream blush or bronzer are better choices than powder-based products, especially in winter.
  • Women over 50 might want to consider a foundation with more of a yellow-tone or hint of gold to give a more youthful appearance.
  • Use a concealer around lips to cover lines and contour lip shape before applying lipstick.
  • For skimpy eyelashes, add a little loose powder to lashes before applying mascara. Use a clean mascara wand to prime and coat lashes with powder as a first step, then apply mascara. At the end of the day, always remove mascara completely with a mascara remover or baby oil on a cleansing pad.
  • Let make-up products do double duty when possible, like using a favorite lipstick as a blush to brighten up your look, or creating your own lip color by adding powdered blush to lip gloss or petroleum jelly and applying with a lip brush.
  • To keep your perfume scent from fading, make sure to apply to more areas than just behind the ears and the inside of your wrists. Add a dab to your bellybutton, behind your knees, inside your elbows, and even a spritz down your back before getting dressed to keep smelling great all day.

Donna Brody

Donna Brody is a former community college English instructor who retired to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. She enjoys freelance writing and has self published three romance novels. Besides writing and traveling with her husband, she keeps busy visiting her seven grandchildren.