1. Switch your moisturizer
The lightweight face and body creams you wear in the warm weather won’t protect your skin from freezing temperatures that are typical in Canadian winters, so you’ll need to switch to something that is thicker and more emollient, advises Toronto-based dermatologist Dr. Nowell Solish. Try a richer version of your go-to moisturizer or look for one with ingredients known for their hydrating benefits such as olive oil and shea butter.
2. Hydrate your hair
Just as you change your skin moisturizer when the cold weather hits, you should also swap your usual shampoo for a more hydrating formula, suggests Justin German, consulting stylist for Pantene Pro-V. “You want to create a barrier,” to protect locks from things like moisture-stripping electric heating. Making the switch will help minimize static tresses, which are caused by dryness. It will also make hair easier to style.
3. Invest in a humidifier
The heat at home and at the office (think central heating systems and space heaters) can also parch your skin, says Solish. He suggests using a humidifier to create more moisture in the air. “The ones that attach to the furnace are not usually enough, so install a small one in the bedroom.”
4. Shower smart
As great as a hot shower feels after hitting the gym or at the end of a long day, it also strips the skin of its natural lipid barrier. Turn the dial to lukewarm for your skin’s sake, and “before you completely dry off, apply your body moisturizer to help keep skin soft,” says Solish.
5. Help your hands
Washing your hands regularly and using hand-sanitizing gel are the keys to fending off colds and flu during the winter, but they also make the skin extremely dry. Stock up on a few tubes of hand cream, then stash them in your bag, by your bed and beside the computer to remind you to hydrate often.
6. Get wet
A year-round complexion fix, facial mists make a perfect antidote for thirsty skin, not to mention a great pick-me-up mid-afternoon when you would usually reach for a cup of caffeine. Just spritz your face a few times a day for a quick hit of hydration.
7. Strike oil
Cleansing oils are a great way to remove makeup when skin is suffering from seasonal dryness. (As an alternative, switching to a milky cleanser also works.) Other facial and body oils can be used in the morning or at night and can be mixed into your moisturizer for an added boost of hydration. If you bathe, add a few drops of oil to the water, suggests Solish.
8. Prepare for the outdoors
Whether you’re hitting the slopes or the ice rink, applying a balm over your daily moisturizer will help prevent windburn and soothe skin. Make sure to cover sensitive areas such as the nose, cheeks and chin. And don’t forget to slather on some sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher; just because you aren’t sitting on the beach, doesn’t mean those rays aren’t reaching you.
9. Travel with care
Spending time on a plane can take a toll on your already winter-stressed skin. So, if you’re flying home for the holidays or heading on a winter getaway “drink a lot of water and moisturize before, during and after the flight,” suggests Solish. You can also spritz your skin throughout the trip with a travel-size facial mist. And, consider going au natural like Canadian supermodel Coco Rocha – the Vancouver native says she flies makeup-free to let her skin breathe.
10. Exfoliate often
Exfoliating your face and body regularly removes dead skin, which helps moisturizers penetrate faster and deeper. For the face, look for a non-abrasive exfoliant (translation: you shouldn’t be able to feel the exfoliating beads) that won’t irritate winter-sensitive skin and can be used daily.
There are few beauty products out there more hardworking than a humble tube of mascara. It’s the finishing touch to every look, the one makeup item many of us—including self-professed no-makeup girls—can’t live without. And it’s also one of the hardest products to buy.
When testing new mascaras, smudges, flakes and clumps are par for the course. To help you on your journey to finding the best mascaras for all occasions, we tried on countless options at every price point. Here are the best formulas for fluttery lashes.
Lancôme Lash Idôle Mascara, best mascara overall
Volume, length, lift and curl—this mascara does it all, so you don’t have to choose. The unique gel texture ensures that each lash is evenly coated, making eyes appear instantly fresher and wider. Plus, the curved brush mimics the shape of the eye and features 90 (!!!) different bristle sizes for a mess-free application with big impact.
L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise Mascara, best mascara for volume
To go bold on a budget, opt for this volumizing mascara infused with conditioning flower oils. Need more convincing? Beyoncé’s makeup artist is reportedly a fan. The hourglass-shaped brush creates a red-carpet-ready look in just two coats.
Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara, best mascara for length
This mascara is a viral sensation, and for good reason: The slim, flexible wand makes it easy to grab every single lash, even in hard-to-reach corners, and the formula contains tiny fibres that instantly add length. It lasts all day without flaking but comes right off with warm water at night.
Benefit Cosmetics Fan Fest Mascara, best fan-effect mascara
Consider this product falsies in a tube. The curved brush is perfectly designed to reach the corners of the eye for a defined, fanned-out effect that gives the illusion of more lashes. The water-resistant formula doesn’t smudge or flake, and it keeps lashes lifted all day.
Dior Diorshow Overcurl Mascara, best curling mascara
Skip the eyelash curler: Dior’s iconic curved mascara wand curls and defines straight lashes for a wide-awake effect that doesn’t look overdone. The formula is incredibly long-lasting—boasting up to 24 hours of wear—and infused with cotton nectar, which creates runway-worthy shine. (Who knew?) Oh, and the packaging is refillable.
Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara, best waterproof mascara
Proof that you don’t have to splurge to get your hands on a top-rated product, this waterproof cult favourite delivers length, definition and volume and stays put through unexpected rain showers and sweaty workouts.
YSL Beauty Lash Clash Extreme Volume Mascara, best mascara for big lashes
If you believe that more is more, this one’s for you. The award-winning jet-black formula and oversized brush work together to thicken and volumize lashes for a fringe that truly stands out. Party season, here you come!
This mascara received top honours at our annual Beauty Awards thanks to its supersized brush, which delivers big lashes.
M.A.C Cosmetics MACStack Mascara, best mascara for layering
With a buildable formula that can be endlessly layered without clumping, this mascara will appeal to those who want soft, no-crunch lashes and a little bit of drama. Choose from one of two different brushes for your tube: the micro, which is perfect for short or bottom lashes, and the mega, a major volume booster.
Glossier Lash Slick Mascara, best mascara for natural lashes
For everyday wear, you can’t beat this mascara’s subtle lift. The smudge- and flake-resistant formula contains tiny fibres which are deposited onto the lashes to create definition and length for up to 12 hours. It’s often compared to a tubing mascara, which uses polymers to wrap around the lashes forming “tubes” for a high-impact, smudge-proof application that washes off easily.
Best mascara for weightless application
Rare Beauty Perfect Strokes Universal Volumizing Mascara, best mascara for weightless application
This mascara is a favourite of beauty experts, and one application is enough to see why. The formula is so light that it feels like bare lashes, but the large brush delivers seriously impressive volume, length and curl in just a few swipes.
Best mascara for sensitive eyes
Formulated with beeswax to condition, shea butter to moisturize and amino acids to strengthen, this all-natural mascara has earned the coveted Clean at Sephora seal. It’s incredibly gentle on the eyes, while still delivering plenty of volume, length and lift.