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How to Care for Your Skin When You’re Indoors All Day

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Here’s how to adjust your skincare for home.

woman holding baby

Whether you’re at home caring for a baby or have moved to working remotely, staying inside most of the time can be a major adjustment for your routine your skincare included. While less time in the sun is generally a good thing for skin, there are other factors to consider, such as dryness from your AC unit and the implications of tech neck. Naturally, your usual skincare lineup may need some tweaks. The goal is not to make your skincare regimen so overwhelming and complex [that] it’s one more thing to fret about,” says Rachel Nazarian, MD, a dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology in New York City. Rather, just incorporate steps that cover all your bases — moisture, repair, and protection (yes, you still need sunscreen). Here’what you shouldn’t miss.

Moisturize More

Being indoors all day can be a little bit tough on our skin sometimes, because you’re a victim to whatever your air conditioning or heating is doing for you, Nazarian says. For most, it’s causing dryness. To tackle that efficiently, use a combination of humectants and emollients to moisturize. The difference is that a humectant will help draw in water, whereas an emollient will help lock it in,” she explains. Common humectants include hyaluronic acid and glycerin, while common emollients include plant oils and cocoa butter.

woman putting on sunscreen

Keep Wearing Sunscreen

If you’re in a place that has windows and get any sort of natural light, then sunscreen is still a must. UVA rays in particular can penetrate through both clouds and glass alike, damaging skin. UVA does not cause burning like UVB does, but it still can cause skin cancers and can certainly cause accelerated premature skin aging,” Nazarian says. Think wrinkles, sun spots, and sagging skin. Use one that comes combined with a moisturizer to hit two steps in one!

Address Stress with Antioxidants

If stress or a new baby (or both) is keeping you up at night, that could impact your skin on top of your energy levels.All those stressors,especially the lack of sleep, take a toll on your skin, too,” Nazarian explains.[Overnight is] a time when our skin will typically renew itself, so one of the best things you can do to at least mimic what our skin would naturally do to repair itself is to apply antioxidants and peptides.” They’re ideal for neutralizing free radicals, which are unleashed by stressors and can damage cells, collagen, and elastin, she explains.

Antioxidants can also protect skin from the effects of blue light, which are emitted by devices such as smartphones and laptops. Blue light has also been shown to cause a type of oxidative stress to the tissue and skin, so that can cause pigmentary alteration in the tissue and, again, skin aging, Nazarian notes. Vitamin C serums are a great option at many price points.

Pay Attention to Your Neck

Ever heard of tech neck? It’s that chronic position of the neck and the head that will cause those neck skinfolds to become more prominent,” Nazarian explains. If you’re not working with a typical desk setup at home and are instead bending your head to look at your phone or laptop, it could lead to visible lines and folds on the neck. While there are dedicated neck creams out there that can help,really, there’s nothing wrong with applying all of your facial products down to your neck [and] down to the chest area, Nazarian says.