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Why skin gets redder and drier in winter



It’s a misconception that the summer is the worst time for skin prone to rosacea and redness. In fact, winter is more likely to make skin rage more.

And new research proves why this is the case.

A new study published in the British Journal of Dermatology (March 2018) shows that the skin’s Natural Moisturising Factor (NMF) is less during the winter, possibly because the cold and intense sunlight disrupt the skin’s ability to produce natural moisturisers.

This factor can trigger a flare up of rosacea in sufferers already prone to the skin condition or even cause the skin condition in the first place.

The new study, carried out by skin scientists in Copenhagen in Denmark, reveals exactly what happens to your skin when it gets red and dry during the winter months

In a trial on 80 volunteers, the scientists found that NMF was lower in the winter, but higher in the summer. They also noted that the skin shrinks, changing its surface.

In addition, the presence of nano-sized particles on the skin surface actually increased – and this has been associated with red, scratchy appearance of skin in cold weather.

The reason for these changes in the skin’s constitution is that as cold wind strips moisture from the face and hands, the skin’s filaggrin protein, which is part of the skin’s protective layer, breaks down, which in turn makes the skin less effective at moisturising itself.

UV light also breaks down filaggrin, so even winter sun combined with cold winds can contribute to the damaging of the skin’s protective layer.

The skin then finds it harder to replenish its natural moisturiser and it starts to crack. The skin starts to inflame as a result, and this causes the red colouring and may also be accompanied by burning or itching sensations.

Add to this the reduced humidity during periods of cold weather and the dry heat from central heating, and skin can easily become dry, red and very sensitive.

Using a an effective and protective daily moisturiser with an SPF of at at least 20 is crucial through the winter months.

A repairing night cream is essential during the winter period, and skin care routines that aim to keep as much moisture retained in the skin as possible are even more important than in summer. So water-free cleansing can also help retain the moisture in dry winter skin.

Keeping inflammation from wind and cold exposure down is also crucial to preventing or minimising redness. Ingredients in skincare that reduce inflammation and help repair the skin barrier are crucial.

Kalme Day Defence SPF25 has a 24-hour moisturising in ingredient in it along with an extract of capers proven to help reduce inflammation as well as a pure mineral SPF25 to protect skin from UV damage.

Kalme Night Repair Cream contains caper extracts to help reduce inflammation and redness as well as deeply nourishing and repairing ingredients to help restore moisture overnight.

Kalme Cream Cleanser is a water-free and highly moisturising cleanser that removes all dirt and make up without the need for water and leaves skin clean but moisturised.

Silver Serum can help restore and increase levels of good skin bacteria which helps repair skin barrier function damaged by cold weather.


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