Skincare for Extreme Weather

While the global climate change debate continues to rage in the media, experts agree that extreme weather is more frequent & impacting more people than ever before. Smart skincare users must reach for appropriate products that will help their skin thrive in an increasingly chaotic world.

Weather vs. Climate

It is important to differentiate between weather and climate as many people struggle to understand how higher average temperatures can actually increase precipitation and usher in colder and more frequent blizzards.

Weather – Weather is the day-to-day state of the atmosphere, and is a combination of temperature, humidity, cloudiness, wind, and precipitation

Climate – Climate is the weather of a location averaged over a period of time (usually 30 years), and includes statistical weather data about norms as well as extremes¹

While the average skincare user doesn’t need to understand the specifics of how our climate is evolving over time, they can stay educated and use this information to protect their skin and keep it healthy despite the harsh yet unavoidable conditions of a heat wave or a polar vortex.

Weather conditions, environmental pollutants, and a high UV index impact the skin’s microbiome, so protecting and supporting the skin to try and reduce the impact of extreme conditions is vital to overall skin health and hydration.

Targeted Skincare Products

man face lotion beardProducts marketed towards cold or warm weather wearers are not new, and beauty editorial readers have long been told to ditch their heavy, occlusive moisturizers for lighter options once temperatures start to climb.

Today, more people are introducing their skin to more volatile conditions on a regular basis than they were a decade ago. Increased globalization, travel, and changing weather patterns can throw even the most seasoned skincare users for a loop as they struggle to pair their products with the temperature, humidity, pollution level, or other factors influenced by climate change.

With this information in mind, our Product Innovation Team has developed two different skincare products designed for the everyday skincare user who must combat extreme weather conditions on an increasingly regular basis taking inspiration from extremophiles.

What are Extremophiles?

Extremophile - an organism that thrives in extreme environments²

Extremophiles thrive where most life forms would not – in places with extreme heat or pressure, highly alkaline or acidic environments, or without access to oxygen. Scientists have learned more about these unique organisms in recent years thanks to significant technological advances, and these developments challenge scientific conventions and inspire new uses for raw materials in applications such as skincare formulations.

Skincare for Extreme Cold

snowflakeThe winter months offer snow lovers the opportunity to hit the slopes on their equipment of choice, and winter athletes, whether they are more hard core or on the casual side, quickly learn the importance of protecting their skin from the harsh conditions of the mountain. Temperatures are low, the wind can be strong, the UV index is high, and risk of inflammation, irritation, and frostbite are all of concern when spending prolonged time outside in the cold.

The key to keeping skin healthy in this kind of environment is to create a physical barrier for the skin, locking moisture in and protecting delicate skin cells and underlying tissue from the cold.

Vaseline and straight shea butter are both effective ways to create a barrier on the skin, but aren’t very sophisticated or conducive to more day-to-day use.

Even those who stay hunkered down inside in a cold snap can suffer from these temperatures, as dry heating systems can wreck havoc on skin, and hot showers or baths, while relaxing, can also be very drying to the body and face.

Polar Vortex Balm

Our ultra-hydrating Polar Vortex Balm is designed to help protect the skin from extreme temperatures and high winds, whether being worn on the mountain or just on the walk to work.

This light blue balm features ingredients derived from extremophiles that thrive in intense climates, including:

  • Abyssine, an exopolysaccaride (a sugary residue excreted by a microorganism) from an extremophile living in deep sea hydrothermal vents. This ingredient soothes irritation, reduces redness, and boosts skin’s resistance to UVB radiation.
  • Chondrus Crispus algae, a red seaweed that lives in deep water and is subject to strong UV rays and drought at low tide. It creates a non-occlusive film on the skin that acts as a barrier and protects the skin from pollution.

This moisturizer is built on a very hydrating base, featuring shea butter, jojoba seed oil, sunflower seed wax, and other ingredients that lock moisture in and protect the skin in harsh environments. It features a light Nordic-inspired fragrance, called Volcanic Fog.

To use, apply moisturizer to skin and allow it to absorb. Follow with sunscreen and makeup, if desired.

Benchmark Analysis
Cold Weather Balms

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Skincare for Extreme Heat

The overarching trend that surrounds climate change is that average temperatures are rising around the world. High temperatures and heat waves are an increasingly routine part of life for most United States and European residents, and these events often trigger poor air quality and increased pollution.⁴

While cold weather skincare users look to protect themselves from the air with moisturizing and occlusive products, hot weather skincare users must deal with very different circumstances.

High temperatures trigger an increase in sweat and oil production on the skin. Lighter, less occlusive products are preferred, such as gel moisturizers and refreshing plant water-based face mists, and humectants help the skin retain water. Clogged pores are a common concern for skincare users in this group, and it’s important for products to be noncomedogenic and not “melt” off of skin in the heat.

Hyperpigmentation is a problem for warm weather worshippers, and while the sun’s rays are a major cause of increased melanin production, high temperatures can also impact conditions such as melasma by causing inflammation and stimulating melanocyte pigment production.⁶

city in smogHigher temperatures are closely related to increased pollution levels. Pollution can negatively impact the skin, and more studies link accelerated skin aging in urban areas to increased pollution levels. Warm temperatures are linked to increases in particulate pollution, such as inhalable microscopic particles that resulted from wildfire season in California, and harmful spikes in ground-level ozone pollution. Skincare users are increasingly looking to their products to help protect and recover from pollution, especially in urban areas.⁵

Extremely warm weather even impacts those who try to stay cool & protected inside, as turning the A/C unit up high reduces humidity levels and can dehydrate the skin.

Heat Wave Moisturizer

This lightweight moisturizer is designed to keep skin hydrated and protected from external stressors associated with hot weather.

This peach-colored Heat Wave Moisturizer features ingredients derived from extremophiles that thrive in intense climates, including:

  • Ectoin, a substance used by microorganisms living in salt lakes in the Egyptian desert. It is considered an extremolyte, which means that it protects extremophiles from high heat and salinity, and in skincare, it protects skin from pollution, sunlight, temperature, and chemical stress that can accelerate aging and damage.
  • Acacia Collagen, which is a plant-derived substitute for animal collagen, and is obtained from the Acacia Seyal tree, a tree that grows in the desert. It’s an excellent moisturizer with film-forming properties that protect the skin.
  • Moringa seed extract is native to Northern India and prevents pollution from adhering to the skin and causing oxidative stress and inflammation.
  • Cactus extract and prickly pear seed oil are both desert plants that keep skin moisturized while fighting inflammation.

This moisturizer is formulated using our Natural Hydrogel Moisturizer base, which provides a high water phase and velvety slip without the use of silicones.

To use, apply moisturizer to skin and allow it to absorb. Follow with sunscreen and makeup, if desired.

Benchmark Analysis
Hot Weather Moisturizers

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Today's shoppers want solution-oriented skincare options that offer them clean formulations and natural ingredients. To learn more about these and other trend-driven skincare developments, please contact our Sales team.

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¹https://nsidc.org/cryosphere/arctic-meteorology/climate_vs_weather.html | ²https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/extremophile.html | ³ https://climate.nasa.gov/effects/ | ⁴Environmental influences on skin aging and ethnic-specific manifestations https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.4161/derm.19858 | ⁵https://www.epa.gov/ground-level-ozone-pollution | ⁶https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/color-problems/melasma