The Perfect Winter Skincare Routine Based On Your Skin Type

Get battle-ready for the drop in mercury.
BY Sarah Lim
| December, 2021
winter skincare routine

Winter can be a magical, cozy time. Cuddling in front of crackling fires. Sipping a hot drink with a friend or lover. Feeling the magic of those first snowflakes (or, YOU know, feeling the excitement of getting away to a tropical beach somewhere). But if you’re like many of us, your skin doesn’t want to cooperate with the drier, cooler weather winter brings to some people. That’s where your winter skincare routine comes in!

You’ve been there—putting on your favorite sweater, getting ready to go shopping, see family, or rendezvous with your significant other. But you look in the mirror and—gasp!—why can’t your skin just look glowy and perfect? Why does it have to be dry, flaky, dull, and red?

The worst part is that it feels like nothing helps. Your everyday routine isn’t working anymore, leading you to wonder if you need a winter skincare routine. However, depending on your living place and your skin type, changing your skincare routine can definitely be helpful in the winter—here’s how you can support your skin type during this season!

Winter Skincare Routine For Normal Types

Build Your Morning and Evening Skincare

Normal skin types generally don’t have much cause for alarm when it comes to their skin—it naturally looks dewy and fresh and isn’t reactive to most skincare products. However, Old Man Winter can cause even normal skin types to struggle.

What would a dry winter skincare routine for normal skin look like? First, if YOU’RE using a regular facial cleanser, you may want to switch to a gentler one. You don’t need to go heavy with a cleansing balm or oil, but you may want to switch from a standard facial soap or cleanser to a more gentle and nourishing one to combat dull-looking skin. Look for a gel, milk, or micellar water cleanser, but avoid clays and cleansers with scrubs this time of year!

NEXT, rev up your moisturizer. Again, you don’t need to go heavy, but consider using a more intense moisturizer than the one you’re currently using. Look for hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, ceramides, squalene, glycerin, jojoba oil, cocoa butter, coconut oil, colloidal oatmeal, and niacinamide ingredients.

Winter Skincare Routine For Dry Types

combination skin and acne-prone skin

For YOUR dry skin, you don’t need wintertime to tell you that your skin is… well, dry! But, on the other hand, winter wasn’t made for dry skin types, so if you already have naturally drier skin, your complexion really needs some extra support in the winter months!

A winter skincare routine for dry skin types involves an intensive, nourishing cleanser, serum, and moisturizer. In addition, go with a cleansing balm, oil, lotion, or micellar water cleanser. You can also choose a milk cleanser, just know that depending on your level of dryness; it may not be nourishing enough for your skin.

If YOU use a serum, you may need to consider going with a more intensive one. Serums that contain hyaluronic acid can give dry skin that dewy, glowing look. Of course, you’ll need to step up your moisturizer too, but going heavy doesn’t mean you have to look like you slathered yourself with oil. Moisturizers with hyaluronic acid and ceramides can be very nourishing for dry skin types.

For super-dry skin types, try an intensive moisturizing mask once a week. This mask will make it easier for you to manage your dry skin, especially during icy and dry winters!

Winter Skincare Routine For Oily Skin Types

winter skincare for oily skin

If YOU have oily skin but tend to experience some dryness in the winter—or care to lapse into more of a combination skin type—you may need a more moderate moisturizer in place of a light one. But unless you’re experiencing severe dryness, still shy away from those heavy moisturizers.

Oily skin types—especially those that are prone to acne—need a relatively gentle cleanser to avoid stripping skin of its natural oil. Otherwise, it will cause the skin to produce even more oil. For a winter skincare routine for oily skin, try a gentle clay cleanser with a light exfoliant in it or a foaming or gel cleanser.

Switching to a slightly heavier moisturizer and a milder cleanser can make all the difference for your perfect winter glow!

Winter Skincare Routine For Combination Types

Combination Skin

Combination skin types tend to have both oily and dry areas on their skin—and these areas can change or become more severe depending on the seasons. For instance, in hotter temps, your skin may be more oily, while in winter, it can be drier.

The best winter skincare routine for combination skin types is based on your skin’s specific needs. For example, if winter gives you those flaky skin and dry areas on your face, go with a more intensive moisturizer and a gentler cleanser. Micellar water is an excellent pick for combination skin types because it helps nourish dry areas but doesn’t strip your skin’s natural barrier function in the more oily sections.

Keeping hydrated skin can help you make the best of a winter skincare routine for combination skin. Adding a serum can help prevent breakouts and nourish extra-dry areas. Consider a vitamin C serum in the morning and a hyaluronic acid one at night for the most benefits!

Winter Skincare Routine For Sensitive Types

winter skincare for sensitive skin

Colder weather can cause sensitive skin types to experience even more redness, flakiness, and dryness. This is one of the skin types that struggle most in winter weather, along with dry skin. So when looking for a winter skincare routine for sensitive skin, start with an extra gentle cleanser. Sensitive skin types need a mild cleanser on a good day, but in winter, you particularly need one that’s not drying on your skin—try a cleansing balm or oil, or go with a lotion cleanser.

While the majority of sensitive skin types will need a more intensive moisturizer, aim to go for hydrating, not heavy. Your winter skincare routine for sensitive skin needs to include plenty of hydration from skincare products without a ton of harsh additives to keep your skincare simple, safe, and effective. Best ingredients? Green tea, hyaluronic acid, rose water and natural oils are all good ones to look for!

Get Your Skin Type Now With This Fun and Easy Quiz!

Do YOU know your skin type? Find it out now with this fun and easy quiz! And if you’ve considered a winter skincare routine, try these modifications to your current routine to prep your complexion for the highs and lows of winter!

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take the 60-seconds quiz

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