Winter Skin Woes

These  weeks  of cold and snowy weather are especially hard on my Retin A -treated  skin.   And its just not the weather outside that’s causing problems.  Apparently  the low humidity in my home   is making things  worse.  The radiators are going full blast 24/7 and as they provide heat, they are  evaporating  the moisture in every room. 

When I learned    that indoor heat was drying out the air, my first instinct was to  buy the biggest, baddest humidifier that I could carry home.  But these devices are not without problems of their own.  Overly humid air  can increase levels of bacteria  and allergens into the air.  The reservoirs of water needs to be emptied and cleaned daily to avoid build-up of mold and minerals– that are then sprayed around  the home. 

To determine if I really needed a  humidifier, I bought a small, inexpensive device that monitors indoor humidity.  Called a hygrometer, it measures moisture in the air expressed as “relative humidity percentage” or RH.  The ideal RH  is between 30-60%.  Over 60% the air is too humid while 0-29% is too dry.  In my  bedroom, the RH was 25%, certainly a clue  to  why my skin  seems to resistant to moisturizers. 

Now that I know  low humidity is a problems in my  home, which humidifier should I  get?  When I went to Home Depot, I was overwhelmed .  Warm mist?  Cool mist?  Ultrasonic?  Germ-Free?   Anyone  have recommendations?

7 thoughts on “Winter Skin Woes

  1. You can always put bowls of water on your radiators to release moisture in to the air. I used to do that when we lived in a house with the old-fashioned cast iron radiators and it worked like a charm. They make specific contraptions just for this purpose but any heat-resistant pan or bowl will work.

  2. This coming winter, when your house is really dry, try using a cheap vaporizer from the “cough and cold” section of your local drugstore. Add a dash of salt and tap water, plug it in an hour before you plan to go to bed, and unplug it before you go to work. Voila! No more dry skin. And it helps prevent illness, too. Don’t get a fancy humidifier; vaporizers are cheaper and safer.

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