Top Tips to Help Dry Winter Skin

While I wouldn't change a thing about living in Michigan - it is beautiful - the weather sure is fickle. While last week was 9 degrees and snowy, today is 55 and rainy. Drastic fluctuations in temperature are certainly the norm here - and it is also a perfect recipe for dry skin.

When the temps drop, indoor forced-air heat can quickly dehydrate your skin. Go outside and chilly outdoor temps cause skin to loose moisture to the air. Icy winds chap and irritate. Then it warms up again and your skin is left saying: WTF?!? And the cycle continues...

I have heard from several of you over the last week that your skin is disgruntled and dry. So here are a few tips I have compiled to help you on the road to happy, hydrated skin:

General Tips to Prevent Dry Skin

Hydrating your body from the inside is the first step to preventing dry skin. 
  • Drink plenty of water and/or coconut water to help keep your skin hydrated. Eat plenty of fruits and veggies to also increase hydration in your body.
  • Try to avoid caffeinated drinks, as they dry out your skin. If you must have your coffee in the morning (and, believe  me, I understand!), drink an extra glass of water for each cup.
  • Try to avoid alcohol, as it also dehydrates your skin.
  • When headed outside, cover your skin as much as possible with clothing. Cover any areas of exposed skin with a thick lotion to prevent moisture loss.
  • Apply lip balm frequently throughout the day, especially before you go outside.
  • Keep baths and showers short and warm (not hot). Hot water dries skin out by stripping your skin of its natural oils. 
  • Add fatty fish, like salmon, to your diet or take a good quality fish oil. The good omega-3 fatty acids help to keep skin moist.
  • Avoid using harsh cleansers, soaps or exfoliants. These will only further strip your skin and lead to dryness.

General Tips to Treat Dry Skin

Exfoliating dry skin first is key to allowing your products to work more effectively.
  • Gently exfoliate dry skin with a brush, loofah or exfoliating gloves as part of your body cleansing routine in the shower before using any topical treatments (oils, lotions, etc.). Dry, flaky skin needs to be removed from the surface of skin to allow topical treatments to work more effectively. Be SUPER gentle if your skin is overly sensitive and use these items only a few times a week. Avoid them altogether if you have any rashes, open wounds or general irritation.
  • Avoid cleansing your entire body every day, especially with a foaming soap or body wash, as they can strip your skin. Skip a day of sudsing, or wash only those most important bits daily. ;) 
  • Better yet, use a body wash of 1 part honey to 1 part oil (jojoba or coconut is lovely) a few times a week in place of your regular soap.
  • Apply lotions, body butters, oils, etc. immediately after showering while your skin is still damp. You want to capture the water and seal it into your skin.
  • Layer your products to protect skin from loss of precious moisture to the elements - start with an oil, followed by a rich lotion or body butter.
  • Avoid using products with artificial ingredients, as they can dry and irritate skin, too.

Helpful Ingredients For Dry Skin

Calendula oil and beeswax salve is a great dry skin healer.
  • Humectants like honey and vegetable glycerin help to pull moisture from the air into your skin.
  • Oils like olive, coconut, hazelnut, grapeseed, jojoba, sesame and sunflower work to replace lost moisture, while being easily absorbed into skin.
  • Oils like rosehip seed and carrot seed help to increase cell regeneration, repairing damaged tissues.
  • Products containing beeswax add a breathable, protective layer to skin.
  • Essential Oils like chamomile, lavender, ylang ylang and sandalwood help to soothe and heal dry itchy skin.
  • Aloe Vera soothes, heals and stops itching from irritated, dry skin. Just be sure you use the pure aloe gel, not the stuff full of colors and added fragrances.
  • Hyaluronic Acid is an ingredient found naturally in skin, it attracts and retains moisture in your skin, while plumping and softening, which is great for dry skin and wrinkles (bonus!).
  • Fruits and Veggies like avocado and banana help to add moisture to skin.
  • Fruits and Veggies like papaya, pineapples and grapes help to naturally exfoliate dry skin due to their natural fruit acids and enzymes.
  • Herbs like calendula, chamomile and lavender are soothing, healing and anti-inflammatory for dry-irritated skin. A nice oil infused with these is great for dry skin.
  • Herbs like rose, licorice, marshmallow and chickweed are cooling and demulcent (they form a soothing, protective layer on dry skin).
  • Sea Kelp is amazing for skin when used externally. It's gelatinous texture soothes, hydrates and protects dry skin.
I hope this offers some helpful ways to hydrate, repair and protect your skin during these upcoming months.



So, remember my review of the fabulous clay-based products at ADAMA MINERALS? Well, the kind folks at their company have created an exclusive offer just for YOU - Autumn Moon/Skin Care For Your Soul blog readers!

Receive 50% off your first order when you enter "autumnmoon" as the coupon code at checkout ( 

Treat yourself - or someone you love - to a gift of healthy, good-for-you products! Enjoy!

I Tried It: ADAMA Purify Glacial Mud Mask

I recently had the pleasure of trying a selection of products from ADAMA - a body care line crafted with 100% Calcium Montmorillonite clay blended with herbal extracts, essential oils, butters and other loveliness. Their extensive line of products with unique formulas captured my attention and after experiencing the products first-hand - I am loving them!

My very, very favorite product is their ADAMA Purify Glacial Mud Mask. I have used many, many clay/mud masks on myself and clients over the years and this one is spectacular. In addition to sustainably harvested, mineral-rich glacial marine clay, this firming and exfoliating mask is also created with skin-soothing and protecting ingredients like comfrey, chamomile, calendula and sea kelp.

Wanting to really put this product to the test, I took it with me on a girlfriend's weekend to Northern Michigan with a group of my best buds since 4th grade. After a stunning fall day of driving the shore of the Traverse City Bay and visiting Pond Hill Farmwe snuggled down in our cozy rental for a little old-fashioned girl's night - PJs, wine and a little spa time.

Girl's night with my goofy forever friends.
The ADAMA mask is formulated for all skin types, which was great since the four of us each have very different skin, ranging from oily to dry and hormonal/acne prone. After a gentle cleanse, we each applied the mask generously. It applies gorgeously, gliding over skin. And unlike other clay masks on the market, this mask offered deep cleansing benefits without being drying or irritating. Our faces were left soft, smooth, glowing and balanced. I still noticed the benefits to my skin even days later. This one is a keeper!

In addition to this mask, there were two other products that I fell in love with from the ADAMA product line. Ancient Clay Repair - a nutrient rich clay treatment cream for irritated skin containing oregano, tea tree and eucalyptus oil - quickly healed an angry mosquito bite on one daughter, itchy skin on the other and razor burn on myself. White Coconut Body Butter - blended with coconut extract, shea and cocoa butters and mongongo oil - smells insanely delicious and keeps skin soft and protected for hours with just one application.

In addition to being created with mineral-rich clay, ADAMA products are also vegan, paraben/sulfate/gluten free. Looking forward to trying more!

The Top 3 SCFYS Posts of All Time!

Since we have been apart for awhile, dear people, and some of you are brand-spanking new to this blog, I thought I would take a walk down memory lane with the Top 3 Skin Care for Your Soul blog posts of all time

These were the posts with the most views over the past 6 years...

The most popular SCFYS blog post ever with over 12,000 views! I guess kelp is the new black!?!

The second most popular post...

And the third most popular SCFYS post of all time...

Enjoy! :)

When Life Gives You the Finger...

It has been some time since I have written a post here at this ol' blog. For these past few months, life has been, well, pretty darned full of the stuff life throws at you.

I will give you the Cliff Notes...

We sold our home of 13 years at the same time my husband, Jim, had a serious bike accident and our 13-year old Husky, Zoe, was fading from kidney problems. We said goodbye to our dear neighbors and I said goodbye to my home skin care studio, as well. We had four days to move from the old home to the new home. We moved to the new home and just a few days later, had to say goodbye to our beautiful, precious Zoe. Shortly after, during a routine test, Jim found out he was having concerning issues with his blood and was sent to a hematologist. And all of this came full-circle in the midst of a brutal Mercury Retrograde - just in time for our wacky summer to be over and school to start. Phew.

Our sweet, sweet girl.
I guess you could pretty much say that life gave us the finger. For several weeks, I thought I was losing my mind and wanted nothing more than to sit in the corner sucking my thumb.

I missed my old home - the home I brought my babies home to. I missed my sweet dog. I missed my neighbors. I missed my studio, my business and my clients. My husband was unable to walk, making moving into our new home a challenge. And his blood test made us fear the worst. I was struggling to keep a cheery face for my kids, who were making one of the biggest transitions of their life, so far.

Life has a way of sometimes trying to appear that it is bringing us down.  But, when you take a step back, take a deep breath, remember that we are resilient creatures (physically and emotionally) and really take the time to look at things - you are given the bigger picture.

Our new home is set on a beautiful 4+ acres of land with a quiet pine grove and an oak forest. When it was "go time" for our lightning-fast move - our village of friends was there at the ready, lifting, hauling and sweating to help move our lives from one home to the next. Since we didn't move far, our old neighbors have been close by to keep in touch - stopping by often and having us over for dinner. And we have met wonderful new neighbors. My husband eventually got back on his feet and was able to walk again. We found that the strange blood test was due to anemia, which we are working to resolve. The loss of Zoe still makes my heart ache, but my heart is also warmed knowing that she stuck with us long enough to make sure we got to the new house safely.

Plus, we got this super-sweet picture of my husband right before he crashed head-first into the ground. Somehow he forgot he wasn't 13 anymore when he went over this awesome bike ramp. So thankful that he has recovered from his injuries.

All of these things make me smile.

We have the power as to how we react to what life throws at us. We can choose to wrap ourselves up like a burrito in the crap of it all - or rub our eyes clear and look at how life is actually doing us a solid.

So, I guess the moral of this story is: When life gives you the and wave back. :)

Wishing you a big-picture, warm-fuzzy, smiley kind of day!

Much love,