Environmental Factors & Knowing Your Skin

I’m sure that, at some point, we’ve all found ourselves with flaky skin at the most inopportune of times. Just a few weeks ago, in fact, I was at an interview, before which I went for a quick look in the mirror—checking for any food stuck in my teeth or anything glaringly embarrassing—only to find flaky, dry skin that covered basically my entire face. Luckily, though, I am sure to always carry around a small, trusty face moisturizer at all times (extremely handy and very recommended!).

Needless to say, my small incident really does highlight just how daunting dry skin can be cosmetically.

Dry skin is the product of outward damage, often caused by environmental factors such as exposure to sun or excessively warm or cold weather, amongst a host of different factors. Since we all have extremely different skin, something that could cause my skin to be dry and flaky could actually make yours radiant. For example, as a Southern Californian native, I am used to plenty of sun; now, however, I now attend school in cold and snowy Boston, and since then I’ve learned that my skin prefers the cold. Whenever I go back to California, my skin just isn’t happy—I break out and my skin is constantly dry. Good news, though: dry skin, although annoying and cosmetically bothersome, can be ameliorated fairly easily, usually just with a moisturizer that you can (and should!) carry around with you.

Interestingly enough, I am actually traveling around Europe this summer, and I feel like my skin changes its mind everywhere I go. Based in London, United Kingdom, my skin seems to be doing pretty well here, much like the east coast; it’s not too humid, not too hot, not too cold, which I can tell my skin prefers. Yet, with my recent excursion to Milan and Venice, Italy, where the sweltering heat was at times too much to handle, my skin instantly retaliated, breaking out and getting annoyingly flaky in the mere three days that I was in Italy.

So, lesson learned? It’s important to remember that environmental factors play a big, big role on your skin. Your skin might just love the blistering heat, or instead prefer freezing temperatures. No matter what, it is very important to actually know your skin well enough to know what environment it prefers, and then prepare accordingly. If you don’t happen to live in an environment that your skin prepares, don’t fret and instead plan for it—perhaps start with carrying around a trusty moisturizer for your own pre-interview woes.