How to take care of your skin this winter using natural skincare ingredients

Rebecca Sullivan shares her tips for all-natural skincare to help your skin stay healthy and glowing all winter.

Outdoors portrait of young beautiful woman in winter

Winter isn’t just time to change your wardrobe, its also time to change the way you look after your skin. Constant temperature changes from the freezing cold to our thoroughly warmed homes means our skin gets really confused and often really dry and tight.

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Its all about moisture, moisture and more moisture. For an extra hit, I absolutely recommend (if you don’t already) adding an evening moisturiser or mask to your norm. Here are a few super hydrating ways to keep your skin looking and feeling soft and healthy!

Mug of steaming hot water
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1

Drink hot water

We all know it to be true but all seem to not ever get enough of it. Dehydration doesn’t just happen in summer time. Far from it! Heating can cause really quick dehydration without us even knowing it. Because its still winter, why not try sipping on cups of hot water with lemon throughout the day.

Hot water actually re-hydrates you quicker than cold too. For your afternoon pick up, add teaspoon of local honey (which is also great for us and super moisturising too on our skin) for your slump time.

Honey on a stirring stick
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2

Honey for your skin

Not just for your toast, Honey is über moisture for your skin. Try using it as a face mask. Lie down, smother (a think raw, not runny) honey on your face, leave for ten minutes and wash off with warm water.

Upside, any that runs into your mouth is a bonus! If you can add some to the ends of your hair too for a few hours before washing your hair. It does wonders for split ends.

Roses in a vase
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3

Super-hydrating rosewater

Rose is also super hydrating as well as anti-ageing. Carry a little spritz bottle of rosewater in your purse and hydrate on the go. You can also make your own by adding essential rose oil to a little water with a spoon of honey, shake and use the same way!

Feet crossed with gray socks on bed under blanket
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4

Get rid of the bedroom heater

Sorry. Over-heating your room is the worst. You are much better to get rid of heating in your room and just sleep in more clothes or get an extra duvet.

Heating and things like electric blankets can actually dry out your skin really quickly. Time to knit some socks!

Almonds spilling out of a glass jar
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5

Add good fats to your diet

Here is some great news! Load up on the fat in your diet. Not the bad fats but the good ones like fish, nuts and oils.

They are great at this time of year for your health because we tend to get really dehydrated and we lack the fatty acids we need for a good skin barrier.

Woman applying lip balm in cold weather
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6

Exfoliate your lips

Our lips suffer the most in winter because they don’t have any oil glands to protect them from cracking. This is the one time of year it is acceptable to use lip balm often (not too often as that can also over dry them). My top tip would be to exfoliate them once a week.

Just mix a teaspoon of raw sugar with a little coconut oil and a few drops of essential oil (like rose or lavender) with a drop of honey. Mix, rub into your lips and rinse off. Moisturise straight away!

Woman holding avocadoes
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Avocado and rose face oil

Perfect for dry skin. Avocado and rose are both super nourishing and hydrating, making this the perfect moisture treatment whilst you sleep. Rose is said to be anti-ageing, so here’s hoping that we wake up having shed a few years as well.

Makes 100ml

  • 6 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 teaspoon rosehip essential oil
  • 2 teaspoon rose water
  • 8–10 drops of rose essential oil
  • Sterilised small bottle

Put all of the ingredients into a sterilised small bottle and shake to mix. Keep in a cool, dry place or in the fridge for up to three months (see tip below).

To use, wash and dry your face before bed, then put a few generous drops of this oil on your fingertips and rub them together to warm the oil. Apply the warm oil to your face, leaving it to soak in while you sleep.

Tip: To extend the shelf life of this oil further, to about 6 months, add 2 drops of pure vitamin E oil.

Elderflower night cream

Elderflowers are one of my favourite flowers for eating and drinking and now using on my skin.

If you can’t get elderflower water, you can easily make your own (see recipe below). Elderflowers are moisturising, so they are a great addition to this face cream.

Elder blossom
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Elderflower water

Makes 200ml

  • 5 cups fresh elderflowers or 3 cups dried
  • 250ml boiling water
  • Sterilised glass bottle or jar

If using fresh flowers, pick them when fully opened. Place the flowers in a heatproof bowl and cover with the boiling water.

Cover the bowl with a tea-towel and leave overnight.

The next day, strain the flavoured water into a sterilised glass bottle or jar, seal and label. Store in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months.

Once opened, store in the fridge and use within a few months.

Elderflower cream

Makes 170ml

  • 6 tablespoons aloe vera gel
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vitamin E oil
  • 1 tablespoon apricot kernel or avocado oil
  • 1 tablespoon elderflower water (see above)
  • 4 drops of rose essential oil (optional)
  • Sterilised jar

First mix the aloe vera gel and coconut oil together in a bowl. Add all the other ingredients and mix until combined. Cool and use a hand blender to emulsify by blitzTransfer to a sterilised jar and close the lid. Store in a cool, dark place for up to three months.

Use liberally on your skin at night before bed, gently rubbing it into the skin. It’s also good to use on dry skin during the day.

Honey flatlay
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Milk and honey facial wash

Buttermilk is soothing, so this facial wash is great for dry and sensitive skin. Honey is anti-fungal, anti-microbial and nourishing. The mixture of elderflowers and violets helps with soothing skin too, as they are both emollients.

Makes 150ml

  • 150ml buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon dried elderflowers or 2 teaspoons fresh
  • 1 teaspoon dried violets or 2 teaspoons fresh
  • Sterilised 150ml jar

Place all of the ingredients into a small saucepan and set aside for a few hours (off the heat) to begin macerating.

Bring gently to the boil over a low heat. Once the mix has reached the boil, remove from the heat and leave to cool.

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Once cool, strain into a sterilised jar and close the lid. Store in the fridge for up to a week and use twice a day (morning and night) to cleanse the skin.