1. Moisturize. Dry and itchy skin occurs when the protective outer layer of skin has been stripped away. Start your day with a moisturizer when you get out of the bath or shower, while your skin is still wet. This will seal in your skin’s natural oils and moisture. Skin needs moisture to stay soft and firm, and the reduced humidity extracts the skin’s moisture. Keep a moisturizer with you and apply when necessary throughout the day.
2. Avoid harsh, drying soaps. Dry-skin sufferers should use gentle skin cleansers and bath or shower gels with added moisturizers. If you prefer soaps, stick with mild soaps that have added oils and fats.
3. Limit baths/showers. In addition, limit yourself to one shower or bath daily, and make sure the water is warm (not hot).
4. Exfoliate regularly. By removing the top layer of dead epidermis cells, you will make your skin appear smoother and less wrinkled. Some products are more abrasive than others. Use as little friction as possible and stick to the least abrasive products, such as Pretty Feet & Hands. Apply lotion containing alpha or beta hydroxy acids after you exfoliate. This will continue the exfoliating process because the acids further abrade and remove dead skin cells.
5. Keep your thermostat at a lower but comfortable temperature. Not only will this lower your energy bills, but it will help preserve your skin during the winter months. Indoor heating takes its toll by dehydrating and depleting skin of its much-need moisture. Consider installing a whole-house humidifier as this will infuse moisture into the air and help prevent dry skin.
Whether dry skin is a seasonal problem or one you experience year-round, these five tips will help get you started on the right track. Once you begin to take care of your skin, the dry-skin symptoms should improve within one or two weeks.