Image credit: Meca Cosmetica

As a categorically oily-skinned person, it’s always a rude shock at the turn of seasons when my face dries out. Truthfully, the skin around my nose is a better indicator of what month we’re in than any calendar or date stamp – overnight it goes from shiny and smooth to tight and uncomfortable. But such is life, and thankfully, I’ve got a handful of tips and product swaps that make retaining water and boosting lipid levels a cinch. So if you’re feeling perpetually dry (i.e. lacking oil) or dehydrated (i.e. lacking water) or both (lucky you) chug some H20 and grab a pen and paper – you’re going to want to take notes on the below:

A Gentle Cleanser 

The jojoba company Jojoba Activating Cleansing Oil, $40. shop now

A simple swap when you’re feeling a little dried out is your cleanser. Let go of any foamy, soapy, gel options and try something less abrasive and more nourishing, like this brand new oil-based formula from The Jojoba Company. It’s made on a base of sunflower oil, Wadi-Wadi jojoba and mandarin oil to cut through makeup and sunscreen, leaving the skin soft and comfortable (and most importantly, clean). Message it into dry skin, emulsify with a little warm water and remove with a damp muslin cloth for best results.

Biologique Recherche Lait E.V. shop now

As for your second cleanse, this is gold class for tight/irritated/compromised complexions. It’s loaded with vitamins, peptides and antioxidants and comes in the form of a light milk, so it lifts dirt ad debris without compromising the barrier. Massage thoroughly into dry skin, add a little water and rinse off before patting your face dry. You’ll be left with baby-soft, conditioned skin.


E.S.K Reverse C Serum, $95. SHOP NOW

Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean you should stop treating pigmentation and uneven skin tone. I use vitamin C all year round, as it keeps my skin glowing and protects against free radicals, that can in turn promote further damage and dryness (no, thank you). E.S.K’s Reverse C Serum is an effective blend of 10% L-Ascorbic Acid and vitamin E to repair and prevent the appearance of fine lines, pigmentation and skin roughness. A winter skin hero, if there ever was one.


Avene Thermal Spring Water Mist, $26. shop now

I really do feel one of the easiest and most effective ways to retain a little more water and give your skin a bouncier appearance is to layer your products onto a damp face (in the morning – retinols and acids should go on clean, dry skin). You can keep it simple and use tap water, or my personal favourite: Avene Thermal Spring Water Mist, aka fancy French water in a can. Just apply a light spritz between every step in your routine up until moisturiser – no need to put it under SPF.


Vaseline Petroleum Jelly, $4. shop now

This is not a tip I recommend to everyone, but if you are really struggling with dryness and irritation (especially around the eyes, nose and lips) you can try slugging. Slugging is a term that originated in the world K-Beauty and involves taking petroleum jelly and using it to form a barrier, thus preventing trans-epidermal water loss. Despite its demonisation on the internet, petroleum jelly is actually a perfectly safe occlusive skincare ingredient, and really one of the most effective ways to keep the barrier intact and stop moisture from evaporating. Apply your serums and moisturiser (dampening the face in between) and finish up with a very light coat of Vaseline. Do this before bed and you’ll wake up reborn. Also, acne-prone/oily skin types shouldn’t do this.

A Better Moisturiser

Murad Intense Recovery Cream, $125. shop now

Sometimes, seasonal skincare and treating topical dryness or dehydration is as simple as switching up your moisturiser to something with just a little more oomph. This pick from Murad is really rich and buttery thanks to shea butter and macadamia oil, so it will replenish skin lipids and work to retain water within the dermis. It’s also calming, so will reduce that tell-tale elemental flush and leave you comfortable and clear. Personally, I like a little tapped around my eyes, corners of my nose and lips.

Top Up Throughout The DayMilk Makeup Hydrating Oil, $43. shop now

It’s like Milk Makeup went into my brain and extrapolated this skincare stroke of genius. A portable oil stick, it’s full of apricot, avocado, calendula, jojoba, and orange peel to leave the skin glossy and nourished. You can use it as you would a normal facial oil, or do as I do and carry it in your pocket for a little moisture hit during the day as needed. Because it’s light, it will just fix up any dry spots or flaking in a pinch, or give foundation a bit of life come 3 p.m. when it’s settled into dehydration lines.

Fake It Til You Make It

Ciate Dewy Stix Highlighter, $39. shop now

When all else fails, a really glossy highlighter will lift the look of dry, sad skin in a pinch. I love this one form Ciate because it’s really glassy and comes out completely colourless, so gives a believable result. Use it on the cheekbones, eyelids and cupid’s bow.