Winter isn’t so wonderful for your skin. The cold, dry air can literally suck your skin dry, leaving you with a flaky, dull and even sometimes itchy complexion. So what to do about winter skin? Resurface!

There are a number of options when it comes to resurfacing your skin, with options ranging from exfoliation to chemical peels – and winter is the perfect time to kick things up a notch because you don’t want to expose your skin to the sun’s harmful rays while you are undertaking more intensive resurfacing. Not sure what is right for you? Here’s a simple guide to help.

First, exfoliate. Exfoliation is the removal of your skin’s oldest, dead cells from the outermost layers of your skin to help reveal the younger, healthier cells below. This is an important step in year round facial care but even more important during these cold, dry, winter months. Exfoliation can be accomplished with cleansers and scrubs, with facial masques or with peels. Two of the best ingredients for exfoliation are retinol and glycolic acid, both of which are available in our Image Skincare and Jan Marini products.

Glycolic acid is a type of alpha-hydroxy acid that is highly recommended by most dermatologists because it’s gentle and has proven anti-aging properties. Its molecules are smaller than other acids allowing it to penetrate the skin more easily for dramatic results. With regular use of glycolic acid, your skin will appear noticeably smoother, softer and firmer with the added bonus that you will also see an improvement in fine lines and wrinkles.

Retinol is a derivative of Vitamin A. First introduced as a treatment for acne, it has since been found to be an excellent treatment for most skin ailments. While helping remove dead surface skin, it also promotes the production of collagen, a protein that accounts for approximately 30% of all your body’s proteins and a vital component in maintaining your skin’s elasticity. Retinol is a stronger exfoliating ingredient, which means you might want to introduce it to your skin care regimen gradually. Even then, you might experience some redness and/or peeling, but remember – it’s helping you get down to those soft, young, healthy skin cells!

For more dramatic results, peels are excellent options for fighting winter dryness and wrinkles. Usually recommended in a series of treatments, there are options ranging from peels that leave you with virtually no down time (no redness and/or peeling) to serious chemical peels which may result in redness and peeling for up to 2 weeks after your treatment. While you will probably experience more dramatic results with the latter, the gentler options can get you to the same results, just a little more slowly.

Both our Image Skincare and Jan Marini product lines offer excellent options for exfoliating and resurfacing – either at home or with more intensive treatments here at the spa. Call us for more information – or better yet, schedule a facial with one of our talented estheticians to get you started on a regimen designed specifically for your skin!