Why My Skin Tans And Looks Dark During Winter? How To Brighten It

Winter season is characterized by low humidity. The exposure of skin to the dry air takes its toll on our skin resullting in dark skin.
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Taking care of your skin is important all year, but it’s is even more essential during the winter season when the skin is taking a frosty beating from cold and dry air. Nada Elbuluk, MD, an assistant professor in the dermatology department at New York University School Medicine and a Skin Of Color Society Board Member says, “When temperature drop, most people find that their skin loses moisture, which can result in dry, itchy, irritated skin”. as the temperature falls and the air becomes drier, our skin is at its most vulnerable.

Most people stay indoors during the harsh winter, traditional wisdom should make you believe that your skin tone will turn lighter. This statement holds for some. However, in others, the opposite happens. As the temperature drops and the air becomes drier, our skin is at its most vulnerable.

The winter season is characterized by low humidity i.e., a low amount in the atmosphere. The exposure of skin to dry air takes its toll on our skin.

Now, you may be one of the unlucky victims of darker skin in winter seeking an explanation for it. Then let me tell you that you are at the correct destination and here your doubts will be rightly solved…

Why My Skin Turns Dark During Winter?

Skin pigmentation comes from the presence of melanin, a black-brown protein also found in your hair, and in specific cells in your intestines and brain. The greater the level of melanin in your skin, the darker it appears. Your skin tone and pigmentation levels are determined by several factors in the winter season. let’s have a look at them…

1) Dryness

The most generic reason why your skin gets darker in winter is because of the excessive skin drying that occurs during winter. The temperature during winter drops drying the air, preventing the upper layer of the skin to regenerate and obstructing the completely peeling off of the skin. Thus making the skin look lifeless and dull appearing to be darker.

2) Winter Sun

In winters, we allow ourselves to feel the sun’s warmth more as compared to summer. In summer we protect ourselves from sun rays by all means possible. In winter when the sun is still harsh, we give ourselves the freedom to enjoy the warmth without applying any sunscreen. That’s what we do wrong as the skin starts to produce melanin from the time it is exposed to sun rays. And this melanin then darkens the skin complexion.

3) Less Sweating

In winter we sweat less, thus dead skin and the impurities that are removed with sweat are harder to get rid of it this time of year. The dead skin and impurities get deposited on the skin making it look darker.

4) Restricted Blood Circulation

Low temperatures cause your blood vessels and arteries to narrow, restricting blood flow and reducing oxygen levels. This then causes the skin to look darker and dull.

5) Seasonal Hormone Imbalance

There can be several factors that can cause a change in hormone levels. Though, winter weather may be to blame when it comes to seasonal hormone changes. It is believed that in the winter season melanin secretion is increased causing a darker complexion.

6) Lack Of Nutrition

There is an association between skin changes and a definite diet. Pigmentary changes in the skin due to malnutrition usually result in hyperpigmentation, sometimes in hyperpigmentation.

How To Avoid Dry And Itchy Skin In Winter?

1. Avoid Hot Showers

Avoid hot showers in winters and replace them with warm showers There is a key difference between hot showers and warm showers. Though I don’t have the exact temperature breakout, I would say try going with a little bit cooler shower. Because hot showers strip your body of the oil which does a great job of helping to moisturize your skin. Thus making the skin dry.

2. Use Gentle Soaps

It is recommended to use gentle soap all around the year if you are prone to dry skin. So, you want to be looking at the ingredients in the soaps. if they’ve got perfumes or are antibacterial or they’ve hot deodorants in them. You want to be careful of those types of soaps and just go with very gentle and safe soaps.

3. Avoid Using A Washcloth

Try to avoid using the washcloth or loofah in the winter season to avoid dark skin. Because by using it you are again stripping off the oils (moisturizing the skin)  leading to a lot of itchy and dry skin especially in the winter season.

4. Only Wash Key Areas

If you are facing extremely worse skin-drying conditions in the winter season then avoid rubbing your whole body with soap instead stick to the key areas.

When we get into the shower, we like to clean ourselves with soap from head to toe. Avoid doing that maybe once a week you can go head to toe, but on a daily shower focusing on the areas like armpits, the crotch area.

5. Apply Moisturizeris

Make sure you put on a lotion or a cream, minutes within three minutes of getting out of the shower. And the reason being at this point your body is going to be most receptive to taking in that moisturizer and really getting in the skin.

6. Drink Water

Drink a lot of water and I’m talking about a gallon a day. A lot of us just are dehydrated throughout the day, you need to be trying to drink at least 8 glasses of water. The only way your skin will start producing natural oils is you start drinking more water.

How To Brighten Your Skin In Winter?

We all want in winter to have glowing, healthy, clean, and not dry skin. So I am going to share some tips and tricks with you to attain the desired results in winter…

1. Diet


It is rightly said, that you are what you eat. Anything that you eat affects how your skin feels and looks. For example, if you eat a lot of junk food, you will end up having pimples. At the same time, if you don’t have the required quantity of fiber and water in your diet you will suffer dry skin.

The best food for healthy and undried skin should include a mix of fruits and vegetables and boast of all nutrients that your body needs- a clean diet means a radiant you. It’s not an instant fix but an investment that will benefit you long-term.

2) Almond Blend

Ingredients- Almond, Sugar, Milk,

How To Make It

1. Grind 4-5  soaked overnight Almonds.

2. Now add 2-3tbs of milk and 2tbs of Wheat flour to it.

3. Add 1tbs of powdered Sugar and 1tbs of almond oil to it.

4. And finally 2tbs of milk to the mixture.

5.. Stir the mixture thoroughly.

How To Use It

–  Ensure you steam your face with hot water so that it opens the skin pores.

–  Now scrub your face with the mixture.

– Leave it for 10-15mins and then cleanse it with lukewarm water.

3) Tumeric Blend

Ingredients- Turmeric Powder, Multani Soil, Lemon, Milk

How To Make It

1. Take a container and add to it 1tbs of Multani soil.

2. Add a small about of turmeric powder to it.

3. Now add 7-8drops of lemon juice and 1/2tbs of milk.

4. Stir the mixture thoroughly.

How To Use It

Use the mixture instead of a face wash. Apply it on the face and after 2-5mins wash your face with lukewarm water.

4) Ginger

Ingredients- Ginger, Rose Water.

How To Make It 

1. Add 3tbs of Ginger juice in a container.

2. Now add 6tbs of rose water to it.

3. Stir it thoroughly.

NOTE- Make sure you add double the quantity of rose water as compared to ginger juice.

How To Use It

– Ensure your face is clean before applying it.

– Apply it to your face with bare hands.

– After 15-20mins wash your face with lukewarm water.


It is equally important. You must include some level of exercise in your daily routine because in addition to its various benefits exercise is extremely essential for your skin. As it helps to release the toxins which the body has collected during the day.


Taking extra care of your skin in winter is more vital. As the cold weather leads to dry skin and irritation, both then result in a darker skin tone.  I hope the article will be helpful to you. Your valuable feedback in the comment section will be appreciated.

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