How 16 Beauty Editors Save Their Skin in the Winter
All the moisturizers, oils and balms the biggest editors in the biz add to their daily routines.
We’ll be honest, in the winter, our whole beauty and skincare upkeep becomes a little, well, desperate. Granted, most of Cov HQ lives in about the coldest livable climate—so between careful application of piles of moisturizer, serums and balms in the morning and our arrival at our heated (read: DRY AS ALL F*CK) office, we inevitably have to face our commute. Forget public transit flashing incidents and sidewalk-owning dog walkers—all that we can deal with. It’s the added obstacle of the elements (wind, cold, rain, snow, freezing rain, ice storms—yeah, actually) that really messes with anything resembling good skin and a normal-ish makeup look.
Then again, we know we’re not alone and that there’s a whole host of beauty editors in New York (and fine, one in L.A., but she feels our pain, we swear) who deal with the same daily perils and still come out glowing. So seriously, what’s their secret? Exactly how do they change their routines come cool down? And, in imitation mode, how should we? Here’s what we learned: despite the fact that it’s flu season, hand sanitizer is a no-no; never go anywhere without Burt’s Bees and Aquaphor; start slathering oil on like you’re after baby-bottom skin. Here’s to making it through to April without alligator skin.
I love Biologique Recherche’s Cream Masque Vermix Masque (just wrote about it in our December/January issue). You’re supposed to use it at night—and I do—but I’ve also taken to wearing it during the day since it’s super hydrating AND protective against the elements (no SPF, though). I also pat face oil onto my cheeks in the afternoon, or before I head back out into the cold. My favorite these days is HollyBeth Organics Face & Neck Elixir. It’s nourishing but I also like the way it adds a dewiness to my skin.
When I know I’ll be outside a lot—skiing, hiking, running from show to show—I’ll apply Aquaphor to my skin. A makeup artist taught me that it’s a great protectant against windburn. I’d worried that it might make me break out, but so far, so good!
I also triple or quadruple up on my Burts Bees lip balm stash—I usually have two in my purse, one in my jacket pocket and one in my jeans pocket. Yep, that obsessive!”
When I shower, I finish with the Brown Sugar Body Scrub from Fresh, so I emerge perfectly hydrated, not needing moisturizer.
I use face oil (Intelligent Nutrients Oil Serum) so constantly that my mascara is forever in ruin; it's worth it.
I know baths are drying, but I must take one practically every night anyway, so I fill it with oil—DeMamiel, Tata Harper and Rituals Eucapytus body oils are all in rotation.
My obsession with Philip B hair products only intensifies when it's dry outside. The original miracle hair oil is AMAZING to work into a ponytail before you go running—it smells so good while you're running, then, after you wash it out, your hair is incredibly shiny.
I avoid hand sanitizers like the plague (antibiotic resistance is going to kill us all) EXCEPT for Burt's Bee's fantastic, cinnamon-ish all-natural spray, which kills everything without triclosan, and without drying out my hands."
"I normally steer clear of hand creams. They can make my skin feel clammy, which is not pleasant when you're at the keyboard writing all day. This winter, though, I just can't seem to slather on enough of the stuff. My go-to for day is Eau Thermale Avène Cold Cream Hand Cream, a rich but nongreasy formula that hydrates even cracked knuckles and lasts through a couple of hand washings. Before bed, I'm using La Mer The Hand Treatment. In addition to the moisturizing benefits, it contains a brightening complex that combats spots and improves skin tone. Given that hands are a dead giveaway of your age, I think I'll start using it year-round."
"Nothing beats Fresh face masks, and in the winter, I slather on their Crème Ancienne Ultimate Nourishing Honey Mask once or twice a week. Even in bone-chilling weather, it makes my crazy skin soft, and the effect lasts for days. That's because honey is one of the best natural moisturizers: it pulls moisture into the skin for long-lasting hydration, plus it has anti-bacterial properties and enzymes that help keep pores clear—so even though this mask is rich, it won't make you break out. At $140, it's definitely a splurge, but you only need a little bit to cover your entire face, so one jar lasts me all winter and then some. Honestly, this mask makes my skin look and feel so great, I've stopped getting facials.
Then, my cheapie winter must-have is Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips. It's the most hydrating lip balm I've come across, it's got a slight rosy tint that makes your lips look so pretty and healthy, and at under $2, it's quite possibly the best beauty bargain of all time."
"Herbacin Kamille Hand Cream is a drugstore staple, but doesn't get enough love. It contains a TON of glycerin, which is hydrating and soothing. So if you're prone to cracked knuckles, ragged cuticles, or sandpaper hands, or find yourself washing your hands constantly because you don't want to get the death cold that's going around, this is exactly what you need in your bag at all times, all winter long.
I've never enjoyed using hand-sanitizer—most of them are packed with alcohol and are way too drying. And in the winter, my hands are already plenty dry (see above). But Renouve Anti-Aging Every Day Defense Hand Sanitizer is alcohol-free. The key ingredient is bitter orange peel extract, which has antibacterial properties. It also smells better than 99% of the hand sanitizers out there. (I'm not 100% sold on its anti-aging properties, though. I haven't used it for long enough to say one way or the other.)"
I refuse to use a hair dryer (I think they’re damaging, I’m lazy, and I like my sleep), so I typically shower at night when it’s cold out. I’ve been using Kerastase Discipline Bain Fluidealiste and Maskeratine to keep my hair smooth, shiny and frizz-free (a must when throwing on a cozy beanie). I'll go about four days between washes and use Amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo if needed.
During extreme winter weather, I keep my makeup fresh by switching from powder formulas to creams. Cream blush, eyeshadow and moisturizing sheer lipsticks or tinted balms wear much better over dry skin during a snow storm than their powder equivalents. Some favorite cream products from my winter beauty wardrobe include Tom Ford's Cream Color for Eyes, Charlotte Tilbury's Filmstars On The Go and Chantecaille Lip Chic."
On my body, I’m all about Vaseline’s new Intensive Care Healing Serum Advanced Relief (the white one), which basically applies serum skincare technology to your body lotion—more potent hydrators that penetrate more deeply and absorb without a trace. It does the job of those really, really rich body creams without the gross cloying under your winter sweaters."
For hair, I dab on a couple drops of Kahina Giving Beauty Argan Oil on my damp ends before blow-drying. It helps smooth without greasing it up. Easy.
Right now, I’m completely obsessed with Chantecaille’s new Rose de Mai face oil—but it doesn’t launch until spring and I’m on the last drops of my sample—so I alternate with Estelle & Thild BioDefense Multi-Nutrient Youth Oil. It goes on morning and night, over top of whatever brightening or firming serum I’m using. (Oil can actually help drive other active ingredients into your skin so always apply them on top. Just give it a few before attempting to put on makeup.)
My go-to for body: Rodin Olio Lusso Body Oil; it smells divine—I love the jasmine and neroli—and I slather it on all over (cuticles too) after my morning shower, wait a few minutes then follow with lotion. On the go, I stash the portable Vitamin E pen from Nails Inc in my bag so I can instantly perk up my mani.
Essentially, most oils are amazing multi-taskers and a single one could cover all of my needs. But there are just so many incredible ones out there. I could not be happier about the exploding oil trend!"
Makeup-wise, I like to mix in a little luminizer with my tinted moisturizer, or apply it on my cheeks before and after moisturizer to give a little glow. Charlotte Tilbury’s Wonder Glow is an instant pick-me-up after a night out (or, more realistically, Netflix bingeing on my couch), as is Burberry’s Fresh Glow Luminous Fluid Base. I tend to like a more natural lip in the winter (Rimmel’s Kate Moss Lipstick in 03 is my cherished nude), or something berry-colored with a sheen—I just discovered Bobbi Brown’s Lip Color in Roseberry, a raspberry shade with brown undertones, and I’m obsessed.
I wash my hair with Purely Perfect Cleansing Cream to cleanse without over-drying, and—being the blowdryer-averse beauty editor that I am—I’ll just add a bit of Reverie Milk throughout my damp strands (it leaves my parched hair feeling ridiculously soft and healthy). Then, I’ll tie my hair into a loose braid, grab a coffee or juice across the street, drive to work, then undo the braid right before stepping into the office. I call it the L.A. version of lazy girl waves."