Yesterday it was -14 outside. That’s the real temperature, not the windchill. With wind chill it was something like -35. It was so cold that school was canceled, and Miss Claire bounced from Joel to me to Joel again. In the morning I put gas in my car, and the snot in my nose froze while I was getting the pump in the tank. During my 15-minute commute, my hands did not stop stinging, not even when I put then between my heated seat – cranked up to 5 – and my thigh.
Wah, wah, it’s super cold in Minneapolis. Blah.
Right now I’m trying to figure out how to take care of my skin and hair in this extreme environment. I’ve been using the Pond’s Luminous Finish BB Cream, along with Olay Pro-X Age Repair Lotion, as my daily treatment. While the eye cream still feels heavy enough, the lotion is just not cutting it. I’m still dry and crackly, even right after application. To combat the really cold days, I’ve been layering Boots No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Serum underneath it all. And still! I’ve been too dry. So I’ve switched up to Aveeno Positively Radiant Tinted Moisturizer. It’s definitely better than the Ponds – which sometimes made my skin feel itchy – but it’s still not doing what it needs to protect from mild flakiness.
The hair thing is even more complicated. My hair is naturally some sort of coppery brown, so i color it a deeper red. This makes it on the dry side, and since my hair is also naturally wavy, it can get pretty frizzy. The Aveda Be Curly products did the trick this fall, but as soon as the temps dropped below zero, it was game on. I ended up using Keratin Complex Color Care Conditioner both in the shower and as a leave-in after. This worked for a while, but add in the wind from the polar vortex, and all bets were off.
Even my Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion is starting to let me down. I’ve been using it for years, and it’s always kept me baby soft. Now, though, I’m having trouble keeping my elbows smooth, and I’m getting dry patches where my exercise clothes rub. Luckily, I have a whole battery of new, heavy duty lotions to try, thanks to a box of goodies from the CVS Minute Clinic and Type-A Parent Conference last fall.
Just about the only thing I’m managing to keep under control is my dry lips, thanks to the Chapstick Hydration Lock I got two Birchboxes ago, and the Sumbody Cinnamon Orange lip tint tube I got last month. I have one on my desk and one on the bedside table, and have been applying liberally. (I also have a Body Shop Vitamin E Lip Care Stick in my car, and a Burt’s Bees Ultra Conditioning Lip Balm in Joel’s. Clearly, I am brand agnostic when it comes to this stuff.)
All of this rambling is just to say that I was super excited to see what would come in the January Birchbox. At this point, I am DESPERATE to find new products that help me get through the harsh winter! Without further ado, here’s what I got:
- Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo. I have tried dry shampoo before, but it was a mousse product and it was pretty useless. It was impossible to apply uniformly, so would leave pieces of my hair kind of clumpy while the rest was frizzy. I guess I’m not really sure what dry shampoo is supposed to do? I’ve heard it can help with itchy scalps and oiliness, but there’s no way this will help my itchy head (dry from winter) and I’m not oily at all. However! I have used this a couple of times, and it did give me a little volume at the crown and made my hair soft.
- Paula’s Choice RESIST C15 Super Booster. The list of things this serum is supposed to do is very long, and very exciting. Anti-aging, anti-breakout, anti-brown spots, etc. I tried it first on its own, and it was a little weird. It smells somewhat medicinal, and made my skin feel somewhat tacky – a feeling that didn’t go away throughout the day. Since, I’ve been mixing with the Boots No7 serum that I use at night. I haven’t been able to detect any differences in the week I’ve been using it, but the sample will go a long way, and I’m interested to see what happens.
- 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Mascara. I am still in love with my Eyeko Black Magic mascara from the November Birchbox, but this 100% Pure product is really cool. I could barely feel it on my lashes, but it created a nice, natural look only a bit better. My lashes are very pale and not super long, so this gave ’em a little oomph. Not awesome enough to unseat the Eyeko, but good.
- Camille Beckman Midnight Monarch Silky Body Cream. This cream has a floral note that makes my nose tickle, so sadly it’s not for me.
- Under Armour Braided Mini Headband. I have the worst luck with these headbands. Maybe my hair is unnaturally slick or something, but every single one of these headbands has just popped off the back of my head two minutes after I put it in place. This one worked a bit better, as long as my hair was down. Up in a ponytail? Fail.