The mere thought of winter sends a chill down most of our spines. And that’s for good reason. “The cold, dry air, and wind affect all of us,” says Helga Hefner, an Ayurvedic beauty and lifestyle expert and Manager of Professional Skin and Spa Education at Aveda. To offset the effects of these qualities, Ayurvedic tradition guides us to do the exact opposite, says Helga. To that end, here are some ways she suggests weathering the season:
1. Stay warm. It sounds simple, but there are more and less effective ways to do it. To beat the cold, Helga suggests you cover your most susceptible parts—hands, feet, neck, the top of the head, and the kidneys—with the proper protective clothing. Keep in mind that loose clothing, no matter how warm it is, doesn’t protect as well as fitted clothing (or tucked in clothing!).
2. Reduce dry and cold foods. “Our body craves and needs warm, nourishing foods in winter,” Helga says. This doesn’t mean you need to stop juicing, but Helga suggests bringing your fruit and vegetables to room temperature before blending. As for dry foods, these are things like dried fruit or toast and crackers. You can still enjoy them, but considering stewing your dried fruit into a warm compote. Top your toast and crackers with nutrient-dense (and “good” fat-laden) nut butters.
3. Heat yourself from the inside out. Now’s the time to up your herbal tea intake. Or simply drink hot water, to which you might add lemon in the morning and ginger during the day. “Room temperature is the coldest you want any beverages in winter on a regular basis,” Helga says.
4. Sleep more. Honor your circadian rhythms. Go to sleep about a half hour earlier than you would in the summer. “Animals that hibernate during winter are being in sync with nature,” Helga says.
5. Hydrate. “Winter, like summer, is an extreme season, and your skin will show signs of being exposed to cold, dry, parched air both inside and outside,” Helga says. She advises taking warm, not hot, baths or showers in the winter, so as not to dehydrate skin any further. She also recommends using the Tulasāra Radiant Facial Dry Brush and Radiant Oleation Oil to help stimulate microcirculation and nourish the skin. Always end your day with a self-care ritual by massaging in Tulasāra Wedding Masque Overnight before bed.