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Dry skin in Winter

Q. Here in Cleveland the cold wind is very strong and the air is often freezing for weeks at a time. What can I use to keep my face from drying out?

Do you recommend lotion with gloves or just gloves? Someone said you can get infections if you have lotion on inside of gloves.

A. When winter arrives and the humidity drops, the skin tends to become more dry.

Twice daily application of a gentle over-the-counter moisturizer like Cetaphil or Cera Ve will help control dry skin during the winter.

For dry skin on the hands, moisturizers may be applied with or without gloves. Wash gloves weekly to prevent bacterial growth inside the gloves.

Q. I'm headed for a Hawaiian cruise. Will my skin be affected by the drastic change in temperatures?

Is the sun really "Different" in Hawaii or on a boat? What do you suggest. Aloha.

A. Changes in temperature may slightly affect the skin. In general, skin tends to be more oily in warmer, humid climates and drier and more prone to irritation in cooler, less humid climates.

UV rays from the sun are stronger in areas near the equator and get weaker closer to the poles. They are also stronger at higher altitudes because the air is cleaner and thinner.

UV rays are reflected from the surface of water, so when on a boat or when swimming extra precaution must be taken to avoid sunburn. A water-resistant sunscreen with at least an SPF 30 and with UVA and UVB coverage is recommended when outdoors.

Reapply sunscreen every 4 hours or every 2 hours if swimming or sweating.

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Dr. Monique S. Cohn

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