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6 Ways to Avoid Dry Winter Skin

6 Ways To Avoid Dry Winter Skin

Cooler, drier weather is in full swing! While the San Francisco Bay Area gets more humid during the winter seasons, I know the opposite is true for the rest of the country. I grew up with sensitive, dry skin that would flake every Fall and Winter (I was so self-conscious!), so I know how annoying and frustrating it can be. It’s especially bad when you have dark skin like me.

Over the years, I made changes in my nutrition and my skin care routine, and both of these have contributed greatly in improving my skin tone an getting rid of flaky dry skin. It was actually a happy coincidence from these positive changes that I noticed this result and it amazed me how much my health can affect the integrity of my skin. Makes sense though! Our skin is an organ (our largest one!) so when we improve our health, of course our entire system will improve their function as well.

Here are 6 ways you can avoid dry skin during this winter season:

1. Load up on healthy fats.

While the humidity and the weather definitely affects your skin, your internal factors play a huge role as well. Dry skin is a classic sign that your body is deficient in fats. This could be due to two factors: 1) You aren’t eating enough healthy fats, or 2) your body isn’t able to properly digest the fats that you are consuming.

Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the main contributors that keep your skin supple and moisturized from inside out. It keeps the skin from drying out and it’s also anti-inflammatory, assisting in the healing process of irritated skin.

So what should you eat? Load up on wild-caught, deep-sea fish like salmon, sardines, cod, anchovies, and sea bass. Grass fed meats have a good ratio of Omega-3 fats as well, and nuts and avocados also have loads of healthy fats that benefit your skin. When cooking, use healthy nourishing fats like coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, butter, ghee, and animal fats.

If you are having trouble digesting fats, beets and bitters stimulate bile formation, which help us break down the fat in our food. If you would rather supplement, this ox bile can be a great addition to your meals that also helps you feel less bloated.

2. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables rich with nutrients

Carotenoids give fresh produce their deep, bold-colors, and these nutrients, combined with the active form of vitamin A found in these foods, keep our skin young and supple. Carotenoids keep the skin from aging, forming wrinkles, and drying out. Converted vitamin A is especially beneficial for preventing loss of skin’s moisture and it acts as a powerful antioxidant that replenishes nutrients in skin and promotes collagen production. Not only that, fresh produce hold a lot of water, helping to hydrate us internally.

Ideally, choose fruits and veggies that are locally grown and organic, and try to consume a wide variety. I especially love to concentrate on and try out different types of dark leafy greens every time I’m at the farmers market.

3. Avoid sugar and processed foods

High sugar consumption, processed packaged foods, and hydrogenated oils are probably the main source of dehydration in our body and our skin. These foods do the opposite of what fresh fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats do, accelerating the age of our skin and causing wrinkles and acne.

I can definitely tell when I’ve had too much sugar when I wake up with pimples or my skin just looks a bit patchy and grayish. My eyes are even dry after a high sugar meal! When your blood sugar rises above the normal range, the body loses fluid fast and causes poor circulation which can even contribute to itchy skin.

If your gut is also compromised by a high sugar diet and you have yeast overgrowth like candida, this can definitely cause dry skin issues, along with rashes, athletes foot, and itchiness. Always eat a whole food diet, and avoid processed sugars and packaged foods, and you’ll find great improvements in your skin. If you don’t know where to start, my RESTART sugar detox program will guide you on how to start a healthy and nourishing diet.

4. Moisturize with safe, toxin-free products

Using products with less-than-ideal ingredients like toxic chemicals, parabens, and hormone disruptors actually do more harm than good to not only your skin, but to your internal organs as well. Our skin care products contribute greatly to the toxic overload that all of us face in the modern world. Ignore the clever marketing by the skin care companies and check all products you are thinking of using on EWG’s Skin Deep to find out how much toxins they contain.

Olive oil and coconut oil are great, natural sources for moisturizing the skin. My Homemade Body Butter contain both of these ingredients and it’s so moisturizing and hydrating for the skin.

Don’t feel like making your own? These are some of my favorite Beautycounter products that have made a huge difference on my dry skin:

Cleansing Balm

Beautycounter Cleansing Balm

I use this balm to oil cleanse (learn more about oil cleansing HERE) and it hydrates and takes off my make up at the same time. I really love how luxurious and moisturizing it feels on my skin.

Rejuvenating Day Cream

Beautycounter Rejuvenating Day Cream

I use this in the morning after I wash my face. Not only does it smell amazing, it contains omega-rich natural oils and vitamin-rich fruit extracts that hydrates and brightens skin. It also has anti-wrinkle properties and my skin definitely feels more nourished after applying this cream.

Hydrating Face Oil

Beautycounter Hydrating Face Oil

I think this might be my current favorite Beautycounter product. It’s so luxurious and silky on the skin, without feeling greasy. I use about 4 drops each night and it’s plenty to make a huge difference in how my skin feels in the morning. So hydrating!


5. Humidify

And I mean this both internally and externally. As the weather gets drier, it becomes even more important to drink plenty of water. Remember: your skin health reflects your inner health. You need to keep hydrated so your skin can also retain plenty of moisture. How much water is enough? Your daily intake should roughly be: The number that you get when you divide your body weight in lbs in half, that number in ounces is how much you should be drinking each day. For example, a 140-lb person should drink 70 ounces of water daily.

This time of the year is also a great time to invest in a humidifier. Low humidity level not only results in dry skin, but this is also the reason why we get sick so easily in the winter time. It’s great to keep it on throughout the day, but especially important to leave it on at night in the bedroom so your body can heal and detox properly while you sleep.

6. Exfoliate

If your skin is already dry and peeling, exfoliation can be extremely helpful. I love using my homemade coconut coffee body scrub on my body in the shower, because it really helps my skin feel smooth and moist.

However, I don’t recommend physical abrasive exfoliation for everyone on the face where it’s a bit more sensitive. Instead, you can gently exfoliate by using raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar as a toner after you wash your face or use activated charcoal mask. If your skin can handle some more physical exfoliation, Beautycounter’s Nourishing Cream Exfoliator is also a great option.

Dry skin is not just an isolated external issue. You have to heal your body from the inside out with proper nutrition, sleep, and stress management to hydrate and moisturize your skin. Skin care products and other external remedies are supplemental factors that can also help minimize dry, flaky skin in the winter (or any time of the year!). If you have dry skin, you are probably dehydrated or deficient in nutrients. With small changes in your diet and lifestyle, you can make a huge difference on your skin, and soon, you’ll look more beautiful and radiant!

What Great Grandma Ate / Jean Choi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.
Regarding other affiliate links and affiliate relationships: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support and understanding.

6 Ways To Avoid Dry Winter Skin

My Daily Skin Care Routine

I’ve been meaning to put together this post for a while after some of you asked me what I personally use on my skin, but I’ve put it off because I was changing up some products in my skin care routine, and I wanted to consistently use them for at least a month before talking about them. After keeping up with the same skin care routine diligently and daily for over 2 months, I can say I’ve finally found a formula that’s working GREAT for me and I’ve been loving how great my skin looks and feels.

Daily Skin Care Routine

Short disclaimer: Every skin is different and you skin may be affected not only by the products you use, but also by the food you eat, how much stress you are going through, and by the seasonal and hormonal changes you are experiencing. For example, my skin is quite acne prone when I consume dairy and too much sugar, and it can get a bit splotchy and dry with lack of sleep and traveling. All the products I recommend are what has worked beautifully for me personally, and it doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll work for you. I do make sure to only post products that are safe and toxin-free, so it’s worth trying these out yourself!

First things first. I don’t like to spend a ton of time on my skin. I’ve always been pretty low maintenance when it comes to my skin and make up, and only recently started paying more attention to the products I use because 1) my skin has changed after hitting mid-20s and it needs some extra love and 2) I’ve realized how important safe and toxin-free products are for our skin and our overall health. Even then, I typically spend about 5-10 minutes on pampering my face each day and I realized that when I switched to products with high quality ingredients like Beautycounter, that’s all I really need. So, here are all the potions I use on my skin every day.


Daily Skin Care Routine

Daily Skin Care Routine

  1. As soon as I wake up, I wash my face with Charcoal Cleansing Bar. Using this daily has helped me tremendously with my acne and random bumps I tend to get.
  2. After drying my face, I apply Rejuvenating Day Cream, which has been amazing at brightening my skin, and even seems to help with reducing red spots. I love that it has both ginger root extract and vitamin C in it, which is known to help with reducing wrinkles and age spots.
  3. Depending on how dry my face feels, I also use Balancing Face Oil, which I’m OBSESSED with. If your skin needs some extra moisturizing, this oil seriously feels heavenly on the skin. It’s a bit pricy but a little bit goes a long way. I usually just use 4 drops and it’s plenty to hydrate my face in the most delicious way, and my skin doesn’t get oily like it used to. Depending on your skin type, there are also Soothing Face Oil and Hydrating Face Oil.


I work from home most of the time, so I usually go makeup free, but on the days that I have to go out to teach a nutrition class or meet with a client, I do like to put on some makeup. I am all about that no-makeup makeup look, so I do like to keep it pretty simple and minimal. I usually just keep my eyes and lips bare.

Daily Skin Care Routine

  1. For light coverage, I usually just use Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer which works really well to brighten and even out my skin, while protecting my skin from the sun with its SPF 20. I also love the moisturizer effect. My color is No. 3.
    If I want fuller coverage, I use Tint Skin Foundation in Honey and it feels so silky and natural on my skin. My face never looks heavy or caked with this foundation and I usually don’t need any kind of concealer after putting this on.
  2. The Mattify Skin Finishing Powder is something I started using recently and I love this new addition to my makeup routine! It’s a translucent powder for all skin colors that gives a finishing look after applying makeup and it helps my makeup stay on way longer than it used it. Sometimes, if my skin feels a bit oilier than usual, I’ll even put this on my bare face and it gets rid of any shine immediately.
  3. I like to use cream blush instead of powder because my skin is on the dry side. The Color Pinch Cream Blusher in Hibiscus has been my go to blush and it is SUCH a pretty pink color. I love that it also hydrates my skin, and it doubles up as lipstick! I totally forgot my lip gloss at a recent wedding I went to, and I ended up using this blusher on my lips which went on beautifully.
    If you like powder blush, I’ve heard really great things about the Color Sweep Blush Duo. I’ve never used it myself.
  4. I never use eye shadow or eye liner for my everyday makeup, but I do like to put on mascara. The Lengthening Mascara works great, doesn’t clump or smudge, and comes off easily with some coconut oil.
  5. I usually don’t like the feeling of lipstick or lip gloss on a typical day unless it’s a special occasion (I’m a lip balm girl, all day errday!), but Beautycounter’s Lip Sheer and Lip Gloss are my go to’s when I do need a bit of color on my lips. They are both moisturizing and nourishing, stays on for hours, and doesn’t give off any unpleasant smells that I’ve experienced in other lip products. In fact, I love the subtle floral scent of both of these products.

Daily Skin Care Routine


  1. I start with the oil cleansing method using a mix of castor and avocado oil. I love that this detoxes my skin, while taking off my makeup at the same time. If I’m lazy, I’ll just use the Charcoal Cleansing Bar to wash my face.
  2. This isn’t a daily routine, but about twice a week, I’ll use the Purifying Charcoal Mask at night after cleaning my face. You can also make charcoal clay mask at home and it’s one of the best methods to deep clean your face and get rid of any impurities and buildup from your pores.
  3. I go back to my favorite Beautycounter product: Balancing Face Oil. I massage my face with a few drops of this oil, and that’s it! I’m ready for bed!

Daily Skin Care Routine

After slowly switching out my products to Beautycounter and keeping up with this skin care routine, I was actually quite surprised at how much better my skin started looking. I know safer products were better for me, but I didn’t think that the changes in my skin health would be so drastic. I’m hoping to keep experimenting with more products and inform you of any changes I make that ends up working well for me so stay tuned for more skin care updates!

Daily Skin Care Routine

If you are interested in becoming Beautycounter’s Band of Beauty member or want to join my team by becoming a consultant, feel free to reach out to me and ask any questions! Safe skincare is one of my biggest passions and I would love to talk to you more about what products would be best for you, and how you can make money by sharing with others how important safe skin care is for our health, and the health of our loved ones. If you are not ready to commit but would like to be updated about future beauty deals and special offers, sign up for my newsletter!

What Great Grandma Ate / Jean Choi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.
Regarding other affiliate links and affiliate relationships: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support and understanding.