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Something has to be said about winter skin. I have a feeling you know what I’m talking about. The dry, crackly, chalkiness that rears its leathery head right around Christmas break. And lasts until you squeeze into your Easter dress.

If you’re over 40, you may find an extra dic-26516-11chin hair in there to make it that much more attractive.493277815314351e9d0ee999dc602b90

I’ve embraced the fact that the shade of my skin resembles milk this time of year. Maybe vanilla bean ice cream if I add a dab of tinted moisturizer to my routine. (Something I’ve always bragged about from heeding my grandmother’s advice by the way – moisturizer. I’ve worn it on my face since I was 18 years old and I may not be Reese Witherspoon, but people do tell me around spring time that I act look like I’m in my mid-30’s.)

But winter skin?

That’s a drier story.

So when a dear friend who represents CRUNCHI, a very on-trend brand of cosmetics that offers a mix of organic and synthetic ingredients volunteered to give me a makeover, I felt like a 14-year-old walking into the cosmetic department at Foley’s at Baybrook Mall. https://crunchi.com/rep/lisadavis/ (Minus the light blue eyeshadow and buffet of unidentified 1985 made-for-Texas-beauty-pageant-queens toxins, of course.) I needed all the help I could get. And the fact that this line is toxin-free was a bonus! https://crunchi.com/our-story/

So I did it. I sat in her adorable dining room chair with my hair pulled back, ready to be beautified. /

We chatted up a storm.

She removed a layer of tinted moisturizer and mascara and eyeliner, a-la-Tammy Fay. I was bare-faced and begging for mercy. Then, after applying moisturizer a second time, she got quiet.

Moments later, after applying primer, she was still quiet.

Then after trying a third time to apply primer, then moisturizer, then concealer, she finally said, “Oh my goodness, your skin is dry, Jackie. REALLY, REALLY dry.”

Tell me something I DON’T KNOW! The struggle with winter skin is real. I wash my face every night and wear night serum, wash it every morning and slather on moisturizer with 25 SPF every day. But..(and with me, there’s usually a but) I didn’t realize I was missing a step in my daily and nightly routine.

A step probably every gal in America knows about, except me. (I blame it on the fact that I don’t have a sister by the way.)

So, I put my listening ears on and she told it to me straight.

“Do you use toner?”

“Did you say boner or toner?”

(Oh C’mon. You would have said it too.)

In all seriousness.

“You HAVE TO use toner before you moisturize!”

“Really? But doesn’t that dry my skin more?”

“No! If you don’t use toner, it’s like…stepping into the shower with your clothes still on!”

“Oh, well, holy heck, how about that? I learn something new every day!”

So, the lesson here?  Use toner. Applying an astringent or toner before you moisturize doesn’t dry out your skin. It actually helps your skin drink in the moisturizer! I also highly recommend primer if you use concealer as generously as I do post-mid-life-insomnia nights.

This is how good of a friend she is: She told me I can use WITCH HAZEL! The odd-smelling stuff that comes in a hydrogen peroxide-style bottle that you used on mosquito bites when you were 12? Yeah, that stuff! A bottle of Witch hazel costs maybe $6 at CVS. And you know what else? IT WORKS! My skin has been so much softer looking since I’ve started using toner BEFORE I moisturize.

So heed the advice of my chemical-free beauty guru friend: Wash, tone, moisturize. Rinse and repeat daily!