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5 winter skin care ingredients to try

Baby, it’s cold outside. Keep your skin comfy and cozy with these effective cold weather ingredients.

Living in a wintry climate has its pros and cons. Pros? The magic of snow days. Hot cocoa by the fire. Getting bundled up in knits. Cons? Shoveling. Soggy boots. Dry winter skin. But even with an icy forecast, it is possible to stay hydrated and dewy all season long. Check out our list of 5 tried-and-true skin care ingredients for winter. We’ve got everything you need to calm, protect, boost moisture, renew and get glowing.

1. Niacinamide

All is calm. Well, at least your skin will be when you add niacinamide to your routine. A form of vitamin B3, this ingredient offers many benefits like reducing hyperpigmentation, boosting moisture retention and improving skin texture. But it's probably best known for its soothing, gentle, anti-inflammatory properties (think: redness reduction and a more even tone). Niacinamide is beneficial year-round but is especially helpful when your face has been exposed to chilly temps and fierce winds.

2. Ceramides

Ceramides, which naturally occur in our skin, are like the glue that holds our skin barrier together. They keep moisture and good stuff in. They block pollutants and bad stuff out. But when we’re overexposed to harsh elements (hello, winter weather and indoor heating), our skin barrier can get compromised. That’s when products with ceramides come to the rescue. By replenishing our ceramides, we can maintain or repair the skin barrier, keeping things quenched and comfortable. Definitely add this one to your winter skin care routine essentials.

3. Hyaluronic Acid

The most common skin complaint during winter? Dryness and dullness. Our most recommended ingredient to combat that? Hyaluronic acid. A buzzy beauty superstar for a reason, hyaluronic acid is a humectant. This means that it draws water into the skin. When layered beneath (or formulated into) a moisturizer, hyaluronic acid will multiply the moisturizer’s ability to sink in and do its thing. Since it hydrates so effectively, it also boosts radiance and dewiness.

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4. Bakuchiol

We all know about retinol’s firming, brightening, youth-boosting superpowers. But retinol can be a bit harsh for some of us with sensitive skin—especially in the winter months when environmental factors cause sensitivity to heighten. Enter bakuchiol: A gentler, plant-derived retinol alternative. It stimulates skin turnover, improving tone, texture, acne, fine lines and more.

Bonus: Unlike retinol, bakuchiol is safe for nursing mothers to use too. (But always check with your doc first, of course!)

5. Lactic Acid

A chemical exfoliant, lactic acid gently sloughs away dry, dead skin cells. This helps your other winter skin care products work even better and allows your healthy, glowy skin to shine through. Since it has a larger molecule than most acids, it is mild enough for many who have sensitive, easily irritated skin. As a bonus, lactic acid also has humectant properties (helping to keep skin hydrated).

Want personalized recommendations for winter skin care products? Head over to our skin care quiz and discover what's best for your unique complexion needs and goals. And whatever ingredients you try, remember to always do a patch test before adding a new product to your routine. Wishing you happy, healthy, hydrated skin this winter—and always.