Right now we’re in the middle of fashion month showing FW2020 collections, meaning I’m currently travelling to some very cold temperatures (namely, New York City). While I love the idea it could snow at any minute, the sub-zero conditions are wrecking havoc on my skin, causing my already-dehydrated face to become even more so (that is lacking water, as opposed to dry skin that lacks oil). Heating and long-haul flights have only made it worse, but the silver lining is I’ve had the chance to really experiment with new ways to really amp up the moisture.
Below, you’ll find my six editor-approved tips for staying hydrated when the elements are working against you. There’s some old staples (like drinking water and avoiding hot showers), plus new tricks involving a really great face mist (Minenssey’s Hydrating SOS Mist), multi-purpose balms and masking in the shower. Keep reading for all the best tips, products and ingredients that will keep you hydrated come rain, hail, snow, fashion week or shine.
TIP ONE: Never forget your HYDRATING FACE MIST
A face mist is one of the easiest ways to top up hydration levels when traveling to cooler climates, given they’re often packed with hydrating agents and can prep the skin before further product application (skincare absorbs better on a damp complexion). Also, if there’s long-haul flights or central heating in the mix, a spritz of something that isn’t recycled air can truly be a saving grace.
Minenssey’s Hydrating SOS Mist is compact and transportable, but more importantly contains a stack of hydrating and soothing ingredients. It’s rich in probiotics (specifically ACB Yoghurt Dermal Respiratory Factor) to help reinforce the skin barrier (a must when you’re in the elements), calendula to soothe and Australian Flannel Flower to hydrate. There’s also white tea, portulaca flower and lemon aspen to protect against environmental aggressors, because cold weather doesn’t mean you can forget about pollution. Ingredients aside, the blue lotus fragrance makes it a wonderful sensorial experience as well.
Similarly, Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Hydrating Face Mist contains hyaluronic acid and purslane to moisturise and refresh skin that’s dull or crepey. It’s lightweight and ultra-fine, so won’t leave you feeling damp or disrupt makeup if you’re on the go.
Finally, if you’re after an option that will simultaneously moisturise and seal makeup, Tatcha’s Luminous Dewy Skin Mist is a cult favourite for more reasons than one. Unlike the previous contenders, this one contains 20 per cent oils for a finish that’s supple and radiant. The Tatcha signature fermented blend of green tea, algae and rice is present as well, meaning you’ll be left with makeup that’s plump, bouncy and luminous.
MINENSSEY HYDRATING SOS MIST, $40. SHOP NOW
Dr. Barbara Sturm Hydrating Face Mist, $149. SHOP NOW
Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist, $73. SHOP NOW
Tip TWO: Keep Up The Water Intake
A no-brainer, but when it’s freezing out it can be difficult to drink enough water. When you’re dehydrated generally, one of the first places it shows up is in your face, so keep a refillable bottle handy and aim to empty it every hour. This counts even more so on the flight over. Air travel is so dehydrating, so drink literally as much water as you can before, during and after flying. Steering clear from alcohol, coffee and salty foods will help too.
Tip three: Avoid Searing Hot Showers
My favourite thing to do when I come back to my home or hotel after a freezing day is to strip off and defrost under a stream of piping hot shower, but this is all kinds of bad for your skin. Heat draws out moisture (the exact opposite of what we’re trying to do), leaving skin vulnerable to irritation and conditions like eczema. Instead, stick to warm water and gently pat dry afterwards.
Tip four: Use Humectants
In order to hydrate, you need to use products that are known as humectants. It’s a bit science-y but essentially humectants attract water into the skin and prevent its evaporation – very necessary when it comes to combating dehydration. Hyaluronic acid is one of the main ones to look out for – it’s a molecule that can hold 1000 times its weight in water, meaning it’s a saviour in icy cold temperatures. The Minenssey Hydrating Dynamic Facial Essence contains hyaluronic acid alongside jojoba and desert lime to really moisturise and prep before layering on extra serums and creams. When it comes to an essence, it’s best to pat it into cleansed skin morning and night. Repeat for extra dewy-ness.
Hyaluronic is commonly found in serum-form too. Hyaluronic Pure Serum by French skincare brand Apot.Care contains only seven ingredients, with hyaluronic acid as the star of the show. It’s light and absorbs fast, so works well for anyone who craves hydration without grease. If you want to double-up, go for a cream like Dr. Dennis Gross’ Hyaluronic Marine Oil-Free Moisture Cushion on top. The cool, whipped gel glides over skin and works incredibly under makeup. It contains a tiny bit of glycolic acid too – perfect for keeping your face flake free in cooler temps.
MINENSSEY DYNAMIC FACIAL ESSENCE, $65. SHOP NOW
Apot.Care Hyaluronic Pure Serum, $103. SHOP NOW
Dr. Dennis Gross Hyaluronic Marine Oil-Free Moisture Cushion, $136. SHOP NOW
Tip Five: Opt For A Good Quality Lip Balm
The skin on our lips is thinner than that of our face, so a rich lip balm is a staple. Go for a formula without petroleum to avoid drying things out even further. The all-natural Minenssey Lip Spa Regenerating Balm is ace thanks to Jojoba Oil, Mango Seed Butter and Cocoa Seed Butter. As far as stick formulas go, Olio E Osso’s Balm Stick in Netto is the perfect handbag staple. Use it around the nose and cuticles if you need moisture in a pinch. If you prefer a light tint, the Lilah B. Tinted Lip Balm in B. Cheeky is made up of beeswax and lavender oil to soften, plus a punchy strawberry tint to add colour.
Minenssey Lip Spa Regenerating Balm, $25. SHOP NOW
Olio E Osso Balm Stick in Netto, $43. SHOP NOW
Lilah B. Tinted Lip Balm in B. Cheeky, $55. SHOP NOW
Tip Six: Pack A Face Mask
I rarely travel without a few hydrating face masks in my suitcase. Often they’re the easiest way to pep skin up after a long flight or broken sleep (thank you, jet lag). If I want to hydrate and refresh at once, the Minenssey Hydrating Face Mask is a great blend of White Clay, Flannel Flower and Rosella Flower to provide the ultimate hydration. Unlike some clay masks, it doesn’t dry skin out or leave it feeling tight. The compact pods also make them ideal for travel, not to mention there’s enough in each to generously cover the face, neck and décolletage. Applying a creamy mask packed with hydrating ingredients in the shower is another top tip as the steam softens pores so mask can really penetrate. The Ultraceuticals Ultra Replenishing Mask is rich and buttery, meaning it’s great for dryness, dehydration and irritation. Aside from in the shower, it can also be left on overnight or during air travel, too. Finally, no cold-weather beauty kit is complete without a sheet mask. You can’t go wrong with a Korean pick, and Dr.Jart+ does some of the best. The Dermask Vital Hydra Solution Face Mask is soaked in a moisturising essence that will plump as you wear it, plus provides great slip for a post-masking facial massage. Who needs a salon anyway?
Minenssey Hydrating Face Mask (nine masks + application brush), $79. SHOP NOW
Ultraceuticals Ultra Replenishing Mask, $78. SHOP NOW
Dr.Jart+ Dermask Vital Hydra Solution Face Mask pack of five, $35. SHOP NOW