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Caring For The Body In Harmattan


Body-careCOMING earlier than expected this year, the cold winds from the Mediterranean hit us straight in the face this week, catching us unawares!

It is that time of the year again, characterised by cold, dust, dryness, extremely hot and harsh weather. The weather is usually cold in the mornings and can get extremely hot during the day.
Apart from finding it difficult to dress appropriately, harmattan poses a risk to our skins if it is not well protected. This period is usually associated with low humidity, which simply means there is very little amount of water in the atmosphere compared to other seasons of the year. As a result the weather appears harsh to our hair and skin. We can follow this few steps to keep our skin fresh and moisturized.

It’s important to use mild moisturizing soap or body bath creams during this period. Also invest in body oil to retain moisture on the skin after bath. Do not completely dry your skin after bathing; about 10 per cent of moisture is retained if you apply on damp skin. You can pour few drops of oil into your bath water if you prefer. Apply your moisturizing cream or lotion all over your body including under your feet and on your palms. Hydrating creams and lotion are advisable for all skin types this season. Apply hand cream during the day and night before going to bed. Applying nail polish can also help protect your nails from excessive drying and hardening.

The Face
Use mild soaps (even if you have oily or combination skin) to wash your face, as harsh soaps and cleansing bars will remove all the oil on your face. Limit the use of facial cleansers and toners that contain alcohol or astringents, use only mild facial cleansers and toners. In light of this, facial cleansers and toners with a neutral PH of 5.5 are best. Always moisturize your face after cleansing. Remember to invest in a lip balm or lip-gloss and use as often as possible throughout the day. Always moisturize your lips before going to bed. For women, always apply lip balm before lipstick or if you prefer lip-gloss, apply it after the lipstick. For guys, note that well kept lips makes you appear groomed, so invest in a lip balm for a non-glossy moisturized lip.

Wash hair with shampoo and conditioner as usual, but don’t dry hair completely to retain some moisture in the hair. Apply liberal amounts of hair oil, pink oil, lotions and creams to hair daily or every other day depending on hair type and severity of the weather. As much as possible, avoid using hair sprits, gels and strong hair hold, as they tend to break the hair. Mild styling mousse can be used for styling in their stead. You can use hair sprays to add shine to your hair if you desire. Scarves and hats are amazing accessories that can be used to protect the hair and still be fashionable.

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