This means that the energetic influence of Water will, for the most part, cease to be pro-active from the 18th of January to the 4th of February when the seasonal energetic activity “returns to Earth” for 18 days before it reappears on the 5th of February as the energy of the Spring season (Wood element).
As keen observers of nature, the ancient Chinese realized that the transition from Winter to Spring, for example, would never happen in just one day but over a transitional period of time. They discovered that understanding the transitions from one season to the next held vital implications for the health and well-being of humans, flora and fauna.
The Chinese deduced that these transitional periods would necessarily happen four times a year–after Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter and the sum total of these periods constitutes what they called the fifth season.
On an average, with variations depending on what band of latitude we live in and given that a year has about 365 days, it can be calculated that each season would have 72 to 73 days each. If the between seasons period happens four times a year, each transition period would be about 18 days each.
It should be understood that even when the energy of a season ceases to be “pro-active” it has a residual effect from its momentum, with more or less effects according to where you live. That is the reason that the symptoms, or manifestations of Winter will continue for a while past the end of the energetic season of Water / Winter. But, the new Earth energy is what becomes pro-active, affecting all living organisms, until it ceases its activity in favor of the next energetic season; although, again, there is for a while a continuation of its effects super-imposed onto the ones of the new season.
How does this movement into the between seasons period of Earth affect your skincare regimen and your choice of skincare products?
We need to remember that there is a lag time between the change of energetic influence and the visible consequences or symptoms of the change.
When the Water season ends, its climatic influence is still felt. At that time, the climate in most of the U.S. is still one of Winter, particularly in the Northern half of the country, and the need to protect against the cold and its effects on our skin is still present and should not be ignored.
For most people it means that a continuation of the Winter regimen is quite logical as long as the Winter climate is in effect, but the people who have a predisposition to Earth conditions (pimples, blemishes or acne, and issues of lymph circulation) need to be aware that with the Earth season beginning January 18 their condition will worsen.
During the eighteen-day between seasons period of January 18 to February 4, Chinese medicine indicates it is the most beneficial time to address the issues of the Earth skin conditions. People with Earth imbalance are the ones who need to switch PHYTO5 skincare lines (and professional treatments) on time.
Because the Water products are also anti-aging products providing hydration and skin tone, given the age and skin condition of the individual, the Water line might be the right choice for most of the year.
For many of our clients in the U.S., it is important to prolong the use of the Water line past January 17 unless their dominant concern is the set of skin conditions associated with the Earth element. In that case, switching to Earth is recommended.
There are a total of four eighteen-day between seasons periods for Earth throughout the year. The other time periods are April 18 to May 5, July 20 to August 6, October 21 to November 7.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published on January 23, 2017 and has been updated here for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.