Winter Skin Saviours

Winter Skin Saviours

Temperatures are dropping and we're pulling out the heaters and stoking the fires. Winter can be bad news for our skin, resulting in that dry, flaky and itchy feeling. Natural winter skincare is all about hydrating and then locking that moisture in. While serums, creams and lotions are needed for adding back some much-needed hydration, oils deliver soothing and moisturising properties. 

Carrier Oils

Carrier oils comprise different components that affect absorption speed, colour, viscosity and therapeutic properties. They also contain fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, acids and other nutrients - which is what makes them so wonderful for skin.

The following carrier oils are relatively high in palmitic acid. As a saturated fatty acid, palmitic acid can help stabilise cell membranes and influence certain membrane protein functions. Palmitic acid is a component of skin lipids which are known to maintain healthy skin barrier function when applied topically, helpfully creating a protective barrier with no stickiness or greasiness:

Argan Oil

Argan oil is rich in vitamin E, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids that nourish and hydrate. It absorbs easily without leaving a greasy residue. Vitamin E helps fight free radicals and gives argan oil anti-aging properties as well. For an intense moisture boost, smooth a few drops of argan oil onto damp skin after showering.

Avocado Oil

Nutrient-rich avocado oil is loaded with monounsaturated fatty acids, vitamins A, D, and E, as well as lecithin. It forms a protective barrier on the skin helping to lock in and prevent the loss of existing moisture/hydration present in the skin. Avocado oil's anti-inflammatory properties can calm eczema flare-ups. This popular oil is a blessing for dry and damaged hair and skin.

Baobab Oil

Baobab oil is a champion when it comes to deeply nourishing hair and skin. It's neutral in colour and scent and is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, essential vitamins (A, E, and C), and minerals. It also has antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is an excellent emollient that helps soothe and protect dry, irritated skin. It contains medium-chain fatty acids and acts as an occlusive moisturiser. It forms a protective surface film that seals in the skin's existing moisture content and prevents transepidermal water loss. Coconut oil also has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help prevent infection in cracked, eczema-prone areas.

Evening Primrose Oil

With high concentrations of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), evening primrose oil helps improve moisture levels in the skin's outer layers. It has been shown to reduce eczema symptoms like scaling, redness, and itching when applied topically. Found in higher concentrations in plant seed oils like evening primrose, borage, and black currant seed oils, oils high in polyunsaturated fatty acids are sometimes recommended for night use to avoid excessive oxidation from sunlight exposure.

Hemp Seed Oil

Renowned for its rich composition of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, the fatty acids in hemp oil can help replenish the skin's lipid barrier, which aids moisture retention and can help restore suppleness. Hemp seed oil also has anti-inflammatory benefits. The high vitamin E content protects against free radical damage as well. Its lightweight and non-comedogenic making it suitable for all skin types, including oily and acne-prone skin.

Jojoba Oil

Don't let the word "oil" fool you - jojoba is actually a wax ester that mimics the skin's natural oils. Jojoba oil can help restore the skin's moisture barrier when compromised by drying factors like cold weather. Its composition allows it to integrate into the skin's lipid matrix. Additionally, jojoba exhibits anti-inflammatory properties that may help calm irritated, inflamed skin.

Marula Oil

Marula oil has been used for centuries by the women of southern Africa to hydrate their skin, hair, and nails. The lightweight antioxidant-rich oil penetrates easily and forms a breathable protective barrier. It contains essential fatty acids and vitamins C and E to restore dry, dull skin. Suitable for all skin types.

Rosehip Seed Oil

Rosehip seed oil is rich in vitamin C to brighten dull winter skin. It also contains essential fatty acids and phenolic antioxidants to hydrate and protect the skin's barrier. Its dry oil texture absorbs easily so it works well for all skin types. Use it on its own at night or mix it into creams and lotions.

Sunflower Seed Oil

High in linoleic acid and vitamins A, D and E, sunflower seed oil strengthens the skin's barrier function to lock in moisture. It absorbs easily without leaving a greasy residue. A rich source of tocopherols, it provides antioxidant protection as well.

Tamanu Oil

Tamanu oil possesses natural skin healing properties that promote new tissue formation, thereby accelerating healthy skin growth. It is highly favoured in the natural treatment of psoriasis, eczema and acne scars. Use it sparingly because it has a strong scent.

Applying one of these nourishing carrier oils after bathing can help replenish the skin's lipid barrier and lock in hydration all winter long. Many people also find oils more effective than creams and lotions for managing chronic eczema. Be sure to do a patch test first if you have very sensitive skin. 


Winter Skin Essential Oils

Carrier oils are the workhorses when it comes to protecting and restoring skin, but essential oils are therapeutic whether applied topically or inhaled. When combined, they restore body mind and soul - and you only need a few drops! Essential oils are highly concentrated and should be diluted with a carrier oil. Experimenting and finding the right combination for your skin type, your mood and the weather is part of the fun!

Here are the top 5 essential oils that can help protect and restore skin during the harsh winter months:


Both Roman and German chamomile varieties contain powerful anti-inflammatory azulene components. This makes chamomile incredibly soothing for red, inflamed, sensitive skin during winter. It can help calm eczema, psoriasis, and severely dry, cracked skin. Chamomile also has antioxidant capabilities.


Frankincense essential oil has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that make it excellent for dry, cracked, and irritated skin. It can help reduce redness, prevent infection in wounds or eczema flare-ups, and promote healing of the skin. Frankincense promotes rapid cell healing, thus strengthening skin and improving its defence system.


With its rose-like scent, geranium essential oil can help balance both oily and dry skin types. It has anti-inflammatory properties along with antimicrobial effects to prevent infection in cracked skin areas. Geranium also helps regulate oil production and improve circulation to depleted skin cells encouraging renewal.


Helichrysum is an expensive but extremely effective essential oil for skincare, especially for aging or damaged skin. It stimulates new cell growth while providing anti-inflammatory benefits to soothe irritation, dryness, and conditions like eczema and rosacea. Helichrysum helps strengthen the skin's barrier and enhance moisture retention.


Lavender is one of the most versatile essential oils for skin care. It is anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial, and helps promote healing. Lavender oil can soothe dry, chapped, or eczema-prone skin while also reducing itchiness and discomfort. Its relaxing aroma makes it perfect for winding down before bedtime with a luxurious massage.


Rosewood is one of the gentlest essential oils. It is antibacterial and antiseptic and has tissue-renewing properties making it ideal for treating wrinkles, eczema, acne and skin conditions. It's also suitable for sensitive skin.

Jojoba and Rosewood Face Serum

Combine all ingredients and pour into a pipette bottle. To use, massage 3 drops of your serum into your skin after using a water-based cleanser or hydrator (rose floral water is beautifully hydrating).

Nourishing Winter Bath Oil

¼ cup each of:

5 drops each of:

Add a splash to the bath water and massage into skin. Pat dry, don't rub off for best results.