Does Acne Get Worse In The Winter?

With biting cold temperatures, blistering winds, and too-hot indoor temperatures, winter can really wreak havoc on your skin. If you're wondering whether or not acne gets worse in the winter, the answer is that's it's certainly possible! While everyone's skin is different, there's a few common reasons acne seems to get more intense this season. Luckily, there's also several things you can do to change up your beauty routine to help combat cold weather flare-ups.

Dermatologist Dr. Sanusi Umar explained this whacky weather phenomenon, telling PRWeb, "When the weather becomes colder, there is less moisture in the air [and] the water in our bodies will be directed towards the air ... Therefore, a likely reason why acne develops more in the winter is that the sebaceous oil glands may become increasingly active in trying to restore balance. This oil helps to moisturize the skin. It also forms a protective barrier to prevent further water loss." So, weirdly the uptick you might be noticing in acne is actually your skin trying to help and protect itself from the cold. Kind of thoughtful, right?

Though you obviously can't prevent your skin from trying to protect itself from the cold (and heck, why would you want to?), the tips below for how to combat winter acne will help clear your skin without drying it out and exacerbating the problem.

1. Gentler Treatments

Supersize Tea Tree Oil, $18, The Body Shop

StyleCaster brought up a great point that, while it's still important to treat your acne, consider less harsh methods that do not contain benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid washes. Drying out your skin more will cause it to create even more oil and perpetuate the problem. My favorite natural spot treatment? Tea tree oil!

2. Consider An Oil-Based Moisturizer

Ultra Facial Cream, $28, Kiehl's

I know, putting oily moisturizer on top of acne-prone skin might seem counterintuitive, but an oil-based moisturizer will help stop your skin from producing so much, according to DermaScope.

3. Keep Your Pillowcases Clean

This is an obvious and practical tip for anytime of year, but sometimes, it can be cast aside when the trek to the laundromat is extra icy. BeautyBanter shared the great reminder that pillowcases collect dirt and grime, and ideally washing them at least once a week will help ensure you're not accidentally making your acne worse at night.

4. Stay Hydrated

DermaScope recommends to make sure you're getting enough water during the winter so your skin stays hydrated and avoids getting too dry. Always keep a water bottle on hand so you have no excuses!

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