I have recently returned from a week long snowboarding trip in the French alps. It was a much needed break from a work heavy January, with the snow, sun and ski offering a light at the end of the tunnel.
In the depths of my teenage years, I lost the love of outdoor pursuits as preoccupations with looking perfect and polished took greater priority over feeling the wind in my hair and cold air on my nose. As I am getting older I have found that these worries are melting away, allowing me to throw myself back in to climbing, snowboarding and surfing without stressing about the dry skin, ratty hair and lack of make up on my face.
It has opened my eyes however to how important a great regime is when exposed to the elements at such an extreme level for prolonged periods of time, to ensure that you’re well protected and of course, looking your best natural self.
I thought I would share some of my top hacks learnt the hard way- lots of dry and peeling skin weeks!
- Apply a great barrier moisturiser. I have recently discovered Aveeno’s natural deep moisturiser which is perfect as it combines natural elements with a deep moisturiser that sits on the skin to protect you from the harsh winds.
- Sun cream!! Having grown up with a mum who had a skin cancer scare, we were always the kids plastered in factor 50, in a sun cap and rash vest. It is something I have always been very rigorous about because the health of our skin is so important. Although its cold on the mountains, the glare even on a cloudy day can expose your skin to high levels of UV. My preference is Piz Buin, specially made for mountains, as it smells nice (don’t laugh but it’s crucial) , isn’t too thin nor cloying and comes in a perfect size packet for reapplication later in the day.
- Hair Mask. My hair always goes wildy frizzy and ‘cotty’ (a bit of northern English slang for the Brits out there) when I am away boarding or skiing, leading to split ends and a general birds nest feel. I often use a Moroccan oil deep hair mask, leaving it to soak into my damaged hair both before, whilst and after being in the mountains.
- Cold showers. It’s not what you want to hear nor what you want to feel… but trust me gals, it works. The temptation to have super hot showers can lead to your skin being sapped of more moisture and also causes more pain in the case of very cold fingers and toes. Turning it down a few notches will really help your skin and body to endure the climate in the mountains.
- Yoga. It sounds a bit mad to be included on a list of skin care but hear me out. The sooner you move toxins out of your body the better it is. Ease out knots caused by a days hard exercises hitting the pistes and your body will thank you for it. You will feel more relaxed in turn fending off break out potentials. Plus your muscles will be so much readier to go again in the morning.
Do you have any other top tips? Have you found similarly that a week in the mountains reeks havoc with your body even if its cleansing for the soul?