How Relocating To College Can Affect Your Skin


Moving to college often means changing climates, and though you may have already purchased a wardrobe for the new weather, have you considered how relocating will affect your skin? Climate, municipal water and pollutants could all potentially influence your skin, but the best way to address skin care problems is to respond to what your skin is telling you. Buying new products in anticipation of a problem can actually make conditions worse. If your skin doesn’t experience any changes, there is no need to change your skin care routine.

If you have recently moved to college and are experiencing skin problems, here are some potential factors:


Cold, Dry – If you are moving to an area with harsher winters or a generally colder climate, your skin could potentially become dry due to low humidity levels. Skin can become rough, red, tightened, cracked or peel due to dry, cold weather.

  • When bathing or showering, keep the temperature lower than usual.
  • Consider a cleanser with lotion or consider a lotion-type toner.
  • Apply moisturizer daily. For those suffering from cracked skin, you will want to use a cream or lotion containing salicylic acid to exfoliate your skin.

Hot, Humid – An increase in heat and humidity can lead to heavier sweating, which in turn can make you more prone to breakouts. The heat makes oil melt inside your pores. The oil then floods the pores, spilling over onto the skins surface, causing a greasy appearance.

  • Try a gel or foaming cleanser that will remove dirt, oil and makeup without increasing oil.
  • Limit or stop the use of lotions and moisturizers. You can use a toner instead.
  • Again, a salicylic acid exfoliant can help protect against breakouts.
  • Instead of applying sunscreen lotion, opt for foundations or powders that include sunscreen.


The water in your dorm room (or apartment) may be different from the water back home. Although drinking water to stay hydrated is essential to healthy skin, the type of water used to bathe also affects your skin.  Hard water contains higher levels of dissolved minerals, while soft water that comes from underground aquifers has prolonged contact with soft mineral deposits.

Generally, hard water doesn’t wash as well as soft water as it tends to leave behind a residue. However, those who are accustomed to washing with hard water can feel “dirty” after washing with soft water due to surfacing of the body’s natural oils. Also, hard water can be harsher on skin that is prone to dryness. There really is no “better” in terms of hard or soft water, but it could be a small change that makes a big difference in your skin.


Both indoor and outdoor air pollutants can have adverse effects on your skin. Air pollutants lower the rate of oxygen in skin cells, which can give skin a dull and sagging appearance. Pollutants also increase the number of free radicals in the air, and when combined with UV radiation, these free radicals decrease the production of skin collagen, which drains the skin of its elastic quality. The loss of elastin leads to rough skin and fine lines.

  • Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter and clean as often as possible to keep air pollution particles off your skin.
  • Keep air conditioning filters clean.
  • Put on sunscreen, even in the wintertime.
  • Cover as much of your body with clothing (as possible) when outside.

Enjoy your days at college!


Barbara Jolie is a full time freelance writer and blogger. She writes about advantages of online classes and is particularly interested in health education.


Note:  All views expressed in this blog post are the personal opinions of the guest blogger. doesn’t favor any particular skincare brand or take advertising from any of them. Our scientific algorithm is entirely unbiased based on your skin profile.

  • Jimmy

    A post with lots of substance, when it comes to skin care. Thanks

  • mySkin Inc.

    Thanks, Jimmy! Do you have ideas on what else we could write on? Would love to hear.