Mary Costanzo-Schwaller owns Salon 208 on the Independence Square. To reach her call 816-252-6303 or e-mail

 Even though we have had sunny days (and a few warm, sunny days), winter is still here. Many of us are suffering from the dreaded “Dry House Skin.” You might know the symptoms, they include, dry patchy skin, cracked lips, sandpaper hands and static hair. Here are a few basic tips that you might find helpful;

For your hair

Cold, dry, winter air will make your hair limp and full of static. Almost every hair type will get more static in the winter. This is due to the lack of moisture in the air.

Try using a silk pillowcase, which will help solve this issue. You can also spray a small amount of hair spray on a natural-bristle brush and smooth it from the roots to the ends; or you can also skim a dryer sheet over your hair. Unless you have very fine or limp hair, do a deep-conditioning treatment once a week.

For your body

My all-time favorite tip is to put a water bottle in your shower, fill it with water, then add a few drops of olive oil or your favorite essential oil. Olive oil is good because it absorbs into your skin very easily. Lavender has many great properties to it. It can be used for relaxing, and is antibacterial as well. Any of the mint essential oils will be invigoratingly wonderful for a wake up shower. Just be sure not to get any in your eyes or mouth. This would be too invigorating!

After your shower, but before you get out of the shower, mist a bit of the oil infused water on your body, then dry off.

The oil in the water will create a barrier to help retain the moisture from your shower so your skin will stay fresh and moist on these dry days. Just be careful, the infused water might make the floor of the shower slippery!

For your face and lips

Another favorite for me is a vitamin e lip conditioner. Sorme makes the best. You can use it alone, under, or on top of your best lip color. For your face, don’t forget to gently exfoliate your skin. This will remove all the dead, dry skin, so your moisturizer can do its job without trying to work through all of the dead, flaky stuff.

Next, you might want to amp up the nighttime moisturizer during these months, and don’t forget a nice day lotion.

There are many different types of lotion for all different skin combinations, so be sure to get the right one.

For your hands and fingernails

Don’t forget these. Dry cracked fingers can be really miserable, not to mention dry cuticles.

Sleeping in white cotton gloves after applying cuticle oil to your cuticles and an ample coating of a heavy duty hand lotion with shea butter will help loads. It’s not too sexy, but neither are cracked, peeling hands. Spring is almost here, so hold on, the warm spring showers will help soften our our rough dryness! Have a beautiful day.