TODAY   |  January 07, 2014

5 ways to avoid dry winter skin

Dr. Debra Wattenberg, an associate professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai in New York, shares tips to protect your skin from your face to your feet, including avoiding excessively hot water and limiting your alcohol intake.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> can do a number on your skin. the associate professor of dermatology at mt. sinai here in new york. good morning.

>> good morning.

>> this is that time of year. we all suffer with the dry, itchy skin. let's talk about the first top five tips to avoid winter skin.

>> don't want to get behind the eight ball when it comes to treating dry skin . stop it before it happens. shorten your showers. warmer showers will make it worse. decrease the heat. it pulls all the moisture out of your skin. drink a glass of water. that's really important. you want to decrease your alcohol intake. and most important thing is apply moisturizer the minute you get out of the shower on to wet skin. that will help a lot.

>> you're going to walk us through different products. let's start first with the face. and specifically with different moisturizers and creams you think we should be using right now.

>> for the face, what people don't realize is they need to change their routine quite a bit. it's not going to help you when it's 20 below . you really need to switch to a lotion if you're using oil-free. you want to switch to a cream if you're using a lotion. something that's oil-based or has some vaseline in it. those products will make a huge difference. switch to a cleanser rather than a soap. get rid of those drying astringents. that'll make a huge difference.

>> okay. and when you talk about looking for moisturizers, you say there's specific ingredients to look for, as well.

>> not all moisturizers are the same. you want to use products that contain products that will seal the moisture into your skin. those are going to be things like aquafor or vaseline. if you want to feel hydrated, look for those that pull water on to the skin. and those are glycerin, glycolic acid, those types of products will make a huge difference.

>> let's move over to the hands and feet. what should we be doing to protect our extremities?

>> you need to wear gloves at all times. outdoors, you want to protect your hands from the elements. indoors, you want to use gloves that contain cotton lining.

>> so when you're doing housework?

>> yeah, it's really important. and you want to apply moisturizer directly on to your skin, something that's going to feel more greasy than you're used to. hand moisturizers tend to have a dry sensation. for the feet, you want to remove the dead skin using a pumice stone . seal the moisture into the skin and eliminate the dry, cracking heels.

>> okay. let's talk about lips over here. that's a part of the body that's very hard to protect.

>> yeah.

>> what should you do?

>> lips don't have any oil glands. and as a result, people tend to lick their lips in order to reapply some moisture into their skin. you want to look for products that contain vaseline. products that contain an spf. people don't realize it's important. there are new products on the market that contain color, products that will help to eliminate the chapped sensation and seal the moisture into your skin. glycerin makes a huge difference in the skin, the ingredients you want to look for.

>> the last area, if we can. this is that time of year people suffer from dry, itchy scalp, as well.

>> in shampoos, you want to look for something that will eat up the dry scales. it'll help massage, that'll make a big difference. and don't stop washing your hair. people think if you don't wash it, it'll hydrate itself. you need to shampoo, leave it on for three to five minutes and then using a hydrating conditioner.

>> shampoo every day.

>> every day, every other day will make a big difference rather than waiting four or five days thinking your scalp is going to be hydrated.

>> thank you for great information as always.