As this winter weather keeps dragging on, our skin pays the price. Cracking, itching, peeling and even bleeding are a few common issues that come from exposing your epidermis to the elements—and they all trace to one root cause: dryness. Z. Paul Lorenc, M.D., of Lorenc SkinFit MediSpa in New York City shares more ways to prevent dry, cracked skin on winter runs.
Hide Your Hands
Gloves are an absolute must for cold-weather runs. While it may make your mittens a bit sticky, moisturizer works best when slathered on before slipping your hands inside. Pre-run, try Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream ($5, neutrogena.com). For extra repair, take a pair of cotton gloves to bed as well, layering first with a heavier moisturizer. G.M. Collin Hand and Nail Repair Cream ($24, skin1.com) contains botanical extracts to replenish and protect the skin’s moisture barrier.
Mask Your Face
Whipping winter winds can result in red, raw skin, accentuating the appearance of fine lines and crow’s feet. Lorenc recommends runners create a “winter mask” each morning: Apply a light moisturizer followed by a heavier one, after washing the face with a gentle cleanser like The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter ($9, thebodyshop.com). At night, step up your hydration game by adding a serum and repair cream to your regimen. Amarté Aqua Veil Hydrator ($65, amarteskincare.com), a cucumber-infused serum, releases droplets of pure H2O onto the skin to form a protective barrier, while Sebamed Anti-Dry Night Intensive Cream ($24, sebamedusa.com) helps replenish lipid deficiency and accelerate cell recovery. When skin is red and raw, avoid anti-aging moisturizers that contain retinoids. Instead, reverse the effects of environmental stressors at a cellular level with MitoQ Serum ($119, mitoq.com), which treats and prevents oxidative damage to cells by delivering powerful antioxidants directly to mitochondria.
Runner’s feet take a beating year-round—but winter is when painful, cracked soles are most common. Treat your tootsies by switching your gel-based body wash for a creamy solution, like Dove Deep Moisture Nourishing Body Wash with NutriumMoisture ($5, drugstores). Post-shower and before bed, slather on a cream specifically formulated for the feet. Ultra-rich Orogold 24K Foot Cream ($38, orogoldcosmetics.com) nourishes and replenishes with gold extracts and shea butter. Moisturize nightly and sleep in soft, breathable socks—as you dream of sunshine and spring-time!