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How to Get Rid of a Winter Rash
Medically reviewed by Debra Sullivan, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., CNE, COI — By Annette McDermott — Updated on April 1, 2019
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Cold weather can take a toll on your body. As temperatures drop, so does the moisture content in your skin. This can lead to a winter rash. A winter rash is an area of irritated skin. It’s most often caused by dry skin. Even if you have healthy skin the rest of the year, you may develop a winter rash during cold seasons. The condition is common and often recurs year after year. Most people who live in cold climates have experienced it at least once.
Without treatment and lifestyle changes, your rash may last throughout winter. Fortunately, there are ways to keep your skin healthy and moisturized year-round.
A winter rash may include any of the following symptoms:
The rash may impact a single area of your body, often your legs, arms, or hands. In other cases, it may be widespread on your body.
Anyone can get a winter rash, but some people are more prone than others. You’re more likely to develop a winter rash if you have a history of:
Spending a lot of time outdoors may also raise your risk of developing a winter rash.
Your skin’s outer layer contains natural oils and dead skin cells that hold water inside your skin. This helps keep your skin soft, moisturized, and smooth.
Bitter cold temperatures can affect the condition of your skin. Cold air, low humidity, and high winds outdoors strip your skin of much-needed moisture. Turning up the heat and taking hot showers indoors do the same. These harsh conditions cause your skin to lose its natural oils. This allows moisture to escape, leading to dry skin and potentially a winter rash.
Other possible causes of a winter rash include:
sensitivity to antibacterial soaps, deodorizing soaps, detergents, or other chemicals
skin conditions, such as psoriasis or eczema
a bacterial infection
a viral infection
a latex allergy
Sunburns can also lead to a winter rash. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can be potent, even in winter. In fact, according to The Skin Cancer Foundation, snow reflects up to 80 percent of UV light, which means can be hit by the same rays twice. UV rays are also more intense at higher altitudes. This is important to remember if you enjoy snowboarding, skiing, or other alpine sports.
Your doctor can often diagnose a winter rash during a physical exam. They’ll review your symptoms and medical history to help determine the cause of your rash and prescribe treatment.
If you haven’t changed your soap or exposed your skin to chemicals recently, chances are your rash is due to dry skin. If you’re moisturizing your skin regularly and limiting your exposure to extreme cold or hot temperatures, something else may be causing your rash. It’s possible you’re experiencing an allergic reaction to a personal care product or medication. You may also have an infection or skin condition, such as eczema, psoriasis, or dermatitis.
Most treatments for a winter rash are inexpensive and don’t require a prescription. For example:
Moisturizers are often the first defense against a winter rash because they help lock moisture into your skin. Apply moisturizer several times a day, especially after bathing and hand washing.
Petroleum jelly also acts as a barrier to help seal moisture into your skin. If you don’t like the idea of using petroleum products, consider trying petroleum substitutes, such as Waxelene or Un-Petroleum, which also prevent moisture loss.
Natural oils, such as olive oil and coconut oil, may help soothe your irritated skin and replenish moisture. Apply to your skin as needed.
Vegetable shortening is another popular folk remedy for dry skin because its solid oil content helps restore moisture. Try slathering it on after bathing or before bed.
Bathing with milk may help soothe your itchy skin. Dip a clean washcloth into whole milk and dab it on the affected area of your body, or soak in a warm bath with milk added for about 10 minutes.
Oatmeal soap and baths may also help soothe your skin. Purchase soap made with oatmeal, or add finely ground oats to a warm bath, and soak in it for about 10 minutes.
Topical cortisone creams, which are available with or without a prescription, may help reduce your skin’s redness, itching, and inflammation. Follow the manufacturer’s directions or use as directed by your doctor.
Most winter rashes improve with lifestyle changes, home remedies, and over-the-counter (OTC) treatments. Others may persist or get worse. Scratching may cause your skin to crack and bleed. This gives bacteria the perfect opening and puts you at risk of infection.
Contact your doctor if you have a rash that isn’t responding to OTC treatments, is bleeding, or has severe symptoms.
The best way to prevent winter rash is to avoid cold climates and dry air entirely. Try these prevention tips if you don’t spend your winter in a warm climate:
Invest in a humidifier to add moisture to the air around you. Whole-house, single-room, and personal humidifiers are available. Find a great selection on Amazon.com.
Bathe less often, lather up at little as possible, and avoid hot water. Consider bathing every other day during the winter, when your body may not sweat as much or get as dirty.
Use natural, fragrance-free soaps made from glycerin, goat milk, shea butter, or olive oil.
Wear clothes made from breathable natural fibers, such as cotton and hemp, to help reduce skin irritation and overheating.
Protect your hands by wearing gloves every time you go outside in cold weather. You should also wear protective gloves when you wash dishes, immerse your hands in water for an extended period, or clean with chemical products.
Prevent winter sunburns by wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher when you spend time outdoors.
Limit the time you spend in front of fires, which decrease humidity and expose your skin to intense heat.
Taking preventive steps and applying moisturizer at the first sign of dry skin, can help you reduce your risk of a winter rash.
Some winter rashes are just a nuisance. Other rashes are more serious and require medical treatment. Contact your doctor if your rash doesn’t improve despite home treatment or you have other concerns about your rash.
Beautician told why Russians get acne in winter
Russians get pimples in winter
During the cold season, some Russians get pimples and small rashes on their faces. Where do they come from and what to do with them, she said in an interview with the radio ... RIA Novosti, 01/01/2022
MOSCOW, December 8 - RIA Novosti. In the cold season, pimples and small rashes appear on the faces of some Russians. Where do they come from and what to do with them? face, she noted. According to Petrunina, the appearance of mysterious pimples is associated not so much with the climate, but with the daily habits of people and their attitude to clothing. The quality of the material from which scarves, jacket collars and other things are made does not affect the formation of acne, the main thing is the degree of their purity, she believes. "First of all, we must talk about the fact that any material must be clean. It does not matter what kind of scarf, hat or collar you have. The most important thing is to make sure that things are clean," Petrunina explained .She told what recommendations cosmetologists usually give to people with red or pustular rashes on their faces. "If this is an allergic reaction, then you need to drink an antihistamine and observe the effect. If these are red pimples, then it is best to choose a product with azelaic acid. If this is pustular rashes, then products with salicylic acid are suitable, "Petrunina advised. However, self-treatment rarely leads to a good result, continue she lied. It is better to visit a doctor so that he evaluates the condition of the skin and selects the drug individually. "You should not self-medicate rashes on the face. I have a lot of clients who come after self-treatment with drugs that they learned about from TV ads or from bloggers. To be treated , you need to determine the nature of the rash on your face, but it’s difficult to do it yourself, it’s better to contact a specialist,” Olga Petrunina concluded in an interview with Sputnik radio. 9Russia 5
society, winter (season), health - society, cosmetology, russia
Society, Winter (season), Health - Society, cosmetology, Russia
MOSCOW, December 8 - RIA Novosti. In the cold season, pimples and small rashes appear on the faces of some Russians. Where do they come from and what to do with them?
With the onset of winter, when the air temperature becomes negative, clients with characteristic rashes located in the lower part of the face begin to turn to cosmetologists, she noted. According to Petrunina, the appearance of mysterious pimples is associated not so much with the peculiarities of the climate, but with the daily habits of people and their attitude to clothing.
"During the cold season, I have an increase in the number of clients with rashes on the chin, in the lower jaw area. This is because people wrap themselves in winter clothes that are not washed or washed not often enough," the cosmetologist is sure.
The quality of the material from which scarves, jacket collars and other things are made does not affect the formation of acne, the main thing is the degree of their cleanliness, she says.
"First of all, we must say that any material must be clean. It does not matter what kind of scarf, hat or collar you have. The most important thing is to make sure that things are clean," Petrunina explained.
February 26, 07:30 HLS
What happens if you wash your face with soap every day? The cosmetologist answers
She told what recommendations cosmetologists usually give to people with red or pustular rashes on their faces.
"If this is an allergic reaction, then you need to drink an antihistamine and observe the effect. If these are red pimples, then it is best to choose a product with azelaic acid. If these are pustular rashes, then products with salicylic acid will do," advised Petrunina.
However, self-treatment rarely leads to good results, she continued. It is better to visit a doctor so that he evaluates the condition of the skin and selects the drug individually.
"Self-treatment of rashes on the face is not worth doing. I have a lot of clients who come after self-treatment with products that they learned about from TV ads or from bloggers. To be treated, you need to determine the nature of the rash on the face, but it is difficult to do it yourself , it’s better to contact a specialist,” Olga Petrunina concluded in an interview with Sputnik radio. 9April 12, 2021 - BIOSPHERE
Winter becomes a real challenge for some people.
And with the onset of cold weather, clients come to the cosmetologist complaining of red scaly spots that appear on the face and hands. Perhaps these are manifestations of cold dermatitis.
Cold dermatitis is an inflammation of the skin that develops in response to exposure to cold temperatures. It is manifested by the appearance of red spots, accompanied by itching and a burning sensation. In the future, peeling appears, the formation of cracks and a small rash is possible. Typical localization - open areas of the skin: face, neck, auricles, hands; somewhat less often - the knees and the inner surface of the thigh. Sometimes this dermatitis is accompanied by sneezing, watery nasal discharge (cold rhinitis), and watery eyes (cold conjunctivitis).
Causes of cold dermatitis are not fully understood. At present, there are three main theories:
In some people, when the skin temperature drops, the structure of special proteins, cryoglobulins, changes. The resulting compounds activate the production of histamine and other inflammatory mediators, which leads to the development of cold dermatitis.
When exposed to cold, a spasm of peripheral capillaries develops with trophic disturbance and inflammation.
Insufficient sebum production leading to increased transdermal water loss and impaired skin barrier function. As a result, cell death and the development of aseptic inflammation occur.
Contribute to the development of cold dermatitis Diseases affecting changes in the immune status: sinusitis, tonsillitis, etc.)
Inflammatory processes of the urogenital area (cystitis, pyelonephritis, vaginitis, etc.) exposure to low temperatures. Sometimes this is not only a long stay in the cold, but also washing hands with cold water, cold showers, etc.
Cold test. An ice cube is applied to the skin, usually in the forearm area, for 5 minutes. With cold dermatitis, redness and, possibly, a vesicular rash appear after 10-15 minutes. However, a negative test result does not always guarantee the absence of the disease.
Dermatoscopy and skin pH measurement will help to determine the nature of changes in the skin more precisely.
If cold dermatitis is suspected, consultation with a gastroenterologist and an ENT doctor is indicated.
Treatment and prevention of cold dermatitis:
Protection of the skin from exposure to cold: warm clothes, gloves, scarves, hats. Mandatory use of a protective cream applied 30 minutes before going outside. Use only warm water, avoid very cold drinks, ice cream.
Eliminate dry skin: use indoor humidifiers and daily skin care with special cosmetics.
Treat co-morbidities as needed.
Antihistamines (cetirizine, lomilan, erius, etc.), vitamins (ascorutin, aevit, etc. ) are administered internally. With severe manifestations, it is mandatory to take vascular agents (pentoxifylline, trental, etc.). Fenistil gel, bipanten, radevit are used externally. In the absence of effect - topical agents with corticosteroids and calcineurin blockers.
Proper skin care every day is very important. Cleansing with mild cosmetics and warm water, avoiding scrubs. The use of professional cosmetics that can quickly restore the water balance and barrier functions of the skin, which have a calming and anti-inflammatory effect. Skin protection is essential before going outside.
EGIA Light Soothing Cream is suitable for the correction, prevention and treatment of the effects of cold dermatitis. The cream has a pronounced soothing and anti-inflammatory effect, does not contain components that irritate the skin. Daily use of the cream will help to quickly restore the hydrolipidic mantle and improve the barrier functions of the skin, while the light texture will be comfortable for any skin type.