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Skin-care how-to’s for winter weather

By Gurman Sahota, February 8 2019 —

Ladies, gents and non-binary folks alike know that Calgary weather is not kind to one’s skin. In order to make your life a little easier, here’s a guide for winterizing your skin care routine. Realistically, I do the following once a day, twice if I’m feeling fancy — minus the exfoliating and face masking — because I believe in small steps. Even if you just do this at night, it will still be good for your skin.

If you wear makeup:

Take it off. Take it all off. No matter how tired you are or how comfortable that bed is, your skin needs break from whatever makeup you’ve slapped on. Makeup remover wipes can leave a residue, so try to use a makeup removing cloth instead.

Wash your face:

Sounds simple, but a trick to get supremely clean is to double-wash your face. You don’t have to double your use of face wash but I find when I double-wash, the rest of my routine feels better on my skin. The perk of the double-wash is that it thoroughly cleans your face, taking off the dirt of the day in the first wash and then really cleaning on the second. Oh, and don’t forget to pat dry, not wipe — this is your face, not your booty.

Tone that mug:

Yeah, toner can sometimes be a racket. But after the double wash, a light spritz of toner will set the stage for the following steps.


This is the most expensive part of my skincare routine. You can skimp on all other parts of the routine but your serum needs to be baller. And besides, you won’t be using much of the product — less is more. Your serum will do the most work for you and finding the right one depends on what you want it to do, whether it’s moisturizing, brightening or working on some wrinkles. Whatever you find that does the job, remember to work down to your neck and let it sit on your skin for a few minutes before moisturizing. Future you will appreciate it.

Eye cream:

University has taken your money, blood, sweat and tears. It has also taken your youth. Eye cream is a little thicker than your moisturizer because the skin under your eyes is more delicate than your GPA, so take care of it. Using your ring finger, dab a small amount under your eyes and then gently rub it in. Working it up and around onto your eyelid will also help get rid of any tightness that the previous steps may have left.


If your serum is doing your heavy lifting, you can get by with a lighter moisturizer to seal that serum in. This way your skin isn’t drowning in product, something that can make you break out. You also need to lotion up your musty, dusty, scaly body. If your elbow is a different shade than it should be, slap on some lotion. And yes, lotion and face cream should be two different products. If the weather is making your skin scream in dryness, coconut oil is a saviour that can be used in a pinch anywhere on your body. Just be wary of using too much — less is certainly more with oil.


At some point during the winter, you’ll likely have flaky skin. No matter how oily you claim to be, you will flake. And when that happens, you have to scrub that nonsense off. Exfoliating once a week is a gentle way to get a smooth face and body on which products like face cream or lotion will be more effective. And who doesn’t like touching smooth, glowy skin?

Face masks:

This will make anyone feel bad and boujee — but it will also help your face out. Doing a face mask once every few weeks is a great way to take care of yourself. Sheet, goopy or peel masks are all fun and will help tame your face.

Lip balm:

Slather your crusty lips. Go get some Blistex — yeah, that little blue tub or stick that you always lose — because I know you have some mad-peely skin on your lips while you’re reading this. Apply lip balm at night so that your lips aren’t in pain when you wake up.

This seems like a lot of steps, but it really only takes a few minutes at the end of the day. Washing your face is a good way to establish a check-in time with yourself while you’re trying to build a life for yourself in university. But if you’re in a hurry — or if that seasonal depression hits real hard — take a cotton pad, douse it in toner and rub it over your face. That will make you feel cleaner, which will help in trying to make you feel like you again. And most importantly, be gentle on yourself. And your face.

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