In a region where an inch of slush has the federal workers abandoning their desks and school kids running free, it's clear that foul weather makes us paranoid. We could lose it on black ice. We could freeze our nose off! We might never be the same.

So, it must be for us that Kiehl's, a cult favorite in skin care, sponsors arctic mountain-climbing expeditions to Mount Everest and Greenland to do product testing. Resulting defenses include a rich "ultra facial cream" and the "all-sport non-freeze face protector," a hockey puck of a wax applied before moisturizer or makeup to shield skin from icy temps.

For something less extreme, NARS offers its slick "aqua gel hydrator," said to be composed of 87 percent water to lock in moisture.

Frederic Fekkai, somehow knowing the frosty follicular challenges to your hair, developed a clever all-in-one compact to combat hat head, condition locks and smooth away static.

If dry hands and feet have you scratching at night, Malin + Goetz, the modern New York apothecary, suggests slathering on multitasking Vitamin B5 body moisturizer before bed. According to the bottle, it goes beyond offering your extremities a drink; it actually "ph balances skin."

Whether or not these liniments bring lasting benefits, there's an undeniable satisfaction in finding the right weapon against wintry mix.

-- Cory Ohlendorf