DIY

How To Care For Your Skin During Harmattan and Winter


Harmattan and winter are those seasons where you get dried out easily, this could be very frustrating especially when you don't have an effective remedy. Harmattan is a season in West Africa and it features consists of  Heavy wind, cold, dryness, Fog with Low humidity in the air which tends to be felt more in the morning and night while Winter is the coldest season in places outside the tropical zone, it features consists of cold, dryness, Fog with Low humidity in the air and it is felt all day. During these seasons people tend to get a dry, ashy and broken skin which is as a result of the rapid evaporation of fluid in the skin. However, these can be avoided by simply following these simple steps.

WASHING THE BODY

The general recommendation is to bath with warm water every single day and most article emphasises on using warm water as using hot water will strip you of skin fat leaving little moisture on your skin. I really appreciate this school of thought but for the longest, I have practised something different and it has worked fine for me.

Winter and Harmattan are not one of those periods when I am willing to get wet and that why I reduce my wash days to a minimum of twice and a maximum of thrice weekly. My daily wash routine during this period consists of washing my face, armpit and my “down below” every morning and night. The major reason I do this is that I don't enjoy getting wet when it is very cold, I feel safe and have fun only when the warm water is running through my skin but once out of the shower with my wet skin exposed to the cold air, it turns to a nightmare for me. Alternatively, I clean my skin with a damped towel which was initially passed in warm water without skipping the wash routine for those three parts I mentioned earlier. This routine also helps in protecting a large percentage of the skin's fat as the quantity of skin fat lost through these process is less compared with one who bath with warm water daily.

This procedure has worked for me for the longest and that is why I hardly get ashy or suffer from broken Skin.

MOISTURISE THE BODY

Ashy, dry or broken skin are almost inevitable during these periods but the best way of avoiding those is by keeping your skin moisturised, it is advisable to use an oil-based creams, lotions or you can simply settle for oils (olive oil, almond oil, Shea butter, coconut oil or even baby oil). Personally, during this period  I use an organic body cream that is made of, olive oil, Shea butter, cocoa butter and soy oil, I am sure you can tell this cream is rich in natural oils and organic butter which are great for moisturising the skin.

Most people suggest moisturising in the morning and evening which I think is fine but it is advisable to have some moisturiser (hand cream, foot cream, face cream, lip balm etc.) in your bag as they can come handy, It is better not to restrict yourself with your timing, there is nothing wrong with moisturising when necessary.

STAY HYDRATED

It is important to drink, drink and drink during this period as the dryness that comes with this season require adequate intake of fluid, it is no doubt that one of the effects that come with these seasons is a sensation of dryness in the mouth and throat associated with a desire for liquids. Proper intake of water helps in renewing and maintaining the skin moisture which happens to be very important for this season. Don't restrict your self to plain water only, you can also consume some juice or beverages as you prefer, a bottle of water in your bag will always come handy.

PROTECT THE SKIN

All the effort to keep the skin moisturized will be in vain if one does not protect his or her skin from agents that can strip them of oil. For instance, exposing the skin to washing detergents can further dry the skin, using hot water can melt the skin's fat allowing the loss of oil from the surface of the skin.
Protect your skin by avoiding items that can dry you out or wear protective materials such as hand gloves etc.

EXFOLIATE

This process is very necessary and should not be ignored for any reason, you should exfoliate at least twice weekly during this seasons as the skin easily toughens and crack.

Exfoliation simply means the process of removing the dead cell from the surface of the skin with the help of an exfoliant e.g. sugar, sea-salt, coffee rice flour etc. Exfoliation helps in soften the skin making it free from any crack, imperfection or damage caused by the dryness in the atmosphere. Exfoliating products can be bought in stores or simply made at home, for those that have the intent of making their body scrub at home it is best to avoid using exfoliants with ash acid (salt) especially when you have wounded or cracked skin as it is capable of burning your skin and further causing inflammation on the skin.

HOW TO MAKE SUGAR BODY SCRUB

DIY, fashion, Harmattan, Healthy living, SKINCARE ROUTINE, Winter, body scrub

This product is the younger brother of the lip scrub I wrote about in my previous post, they were made the same day but the lip scrub is some minute older and they are both a year old on my shelf. The great thing about this scrub is that you need just two easy to find ingredients and of course an essential oil which is optional but totally mandatory for me because I love their relaxing scent. To make this product, you will be needing

WHITE GRANULATED SUGAR

This serves as the exfoliant, it is self-preserving and can be substituted with brown sugar or sea salt.
6 Tbs


SHEA BUTTER

Shea butter is rich in vitamins and fatty acids which helps in nourishing and moisturising the skin. It helps in eliminating dryness on the skin and help protect the skin’s natural oil. For the sake of this recipe, I will advise you Melt the shea butter making sure that you don't burn the fat during this period.                       
4 Tbs

ESSENTIAL OIL

This helps in adding a nice and relaxing fragrance to the product.
8 Drops


PROCEDURE

Simply mix these ingredients together in a bowl in the right proportion and store in a sanitized glass or plastic container.

Stay tuned! I will be uploading a video soon, illustrating how this could be done.

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