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These Hydrating Makeup Products are the Solution to Dry Winter Skin

Jessie Quinn
Writer and expert1 year ago
View Jessie Quinn's profile
model using beautyblender

The concept of hydrating makeup goes hand-in-hand with the current makeup trends, too. With so many of us spending more time at home — especially during the harsh winter season — we’ve turned to skincare-inspired makeup formulas that not only elevate our look but provide lasting nourishment and protection, too. Whether we’re taking a more “no-makeup makeup” approach or going for more beauty products with superstar skincare ingredients, we don’t just want a product that applies well (and stays put), we want something that benefits the skin and promotes a more healthy-looking complexion, too. After all, if it’s going on our faces, it might as well have some added oomph!

How Cold Weather Affects Your Skin

Applying makeup to the complexion is a lot like applying paint to canvas — you want a clean surface that allows for the best application. But, with winter weather in full effect and stealing away the skin’s moisture, makeup application can be tricky. The key is to keep up with a good winter skincare routine where hydration is center stage. In applying hydrating skincare products and treating the skin to regular gentle exfoliation, you can create a base that is soft, supple, smooth, and well-nourished — aka, the ideal environment for makeup application.

Importance of Hydrating Makeup Products

While a boost of hydration courtesy of your go-to foundation or primer is welcome all year long, international makeup artist Amy Nicole, founder of Chic Studios School of Makeup, says it’s even more important during the colder months. “It’s important to ensure that the skin is treated with extra measures so your makeup doesn’t end up patchy-looking and cling to dry spots on your skin, emphasizing it even more,” she adds.

“As our skin loses its natural oils and hydration during colder months, we need to replace [our usual makeup] with hydrating products,” adds Dr. Ilyas. “If you think about the cobblestone street analogy, if the mortar between the bricks is dissolving, then we need to fill in those areas with the right products!” she emphasizes.

And to do that, keeping an eye out for the right ingredients is key. For the best hydrating makeup ingredients, look for ceramides, hyaluronic acid and glycerin, suggests licensed esthetician Natasha Gayle, owner of Mirror Mirror Skin Lab in Brooklyn, New York. “These humectant ingredients trap moisture into the skin, provide deep hydration and plump up [the skin] from the inside,” she explains. Other nourishing and moisture-boosting ingredients to look out for include shea butter, vitamin E and botanical oils like jojoba, coconut and argan, to name a few.

Nicole also suggests opting for makeup products with vitamin C to help with collagen production, AHAs (like lactic acid) to boost the skin’s glow and retinol to minimize discoloration and fine lines. “These are ingredients that help with the skin’s overall health and hydration,” she adds.

Other Tips to Keep Winter Skin at Bay

Just as your #ootd goes from frilly frocks to cashmere sweaters, Green says it’s important to tweak your beauty routine every season to match your skin’s current needs. “You want to make sure your skin stays healthy, so switching to more hydrating products in winter will provide your skin with extra moisture,” she explains.

When choosing the best makeup for winter, Gayle suggests treading carefully when it comes to matte primers and foundations as some formulas can “suck the hydration out of your skin.” To prevent dry patches and caking, she suggests using a beauty sponge with a dab of moisturizer on it to apply foundation. “It helps to press the foundation onto the skin and add in some moisture that will serve you all day,” Gayle explains.

Best Hydrating Makeup for Winter 

Ready to give your makeup game a moisturizing boost? Here are our top picks for best hydrating makeup products!

    Jessie Quinn
    Writer and expert
    View Jessie Quinn's profile

    Jessie Quinn is a writer and editor with work published in NYLON Magazine,,,, and more. She is a graduate of Academy of Art University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Journalism. Originally from Los Angeles, she currently resides in Brooklyn—her home for the last five years. In Jessie’s free time, you can find her creating content for her beauty blog, Hair Skin Kale, testing out DIY beauty recipes, exploring her neighborhood, or binge-watching episodes of Friends. Her background in fashion has taught her that beautiful skin never goes out of style. Follow her on Instagram.