Dry skin is as big a skincare concern as oily skin, if not more. It comes with a host of other issues that are bound to leave you feeling frustrated. Besides having to fight itchiness, redness and flaky patches on a constant basis, you are forced to avoid using makeup as the foundation always clings onto the parched skin. The fact that prolonged dryness can cause the skin to develop early signs of ageing might force you to apply layers and layers of moisturizer to avert that risk. But moisturizing alone cannot treat your dry skin woes.
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There can be many reasons why your skin feels dry – genetics, lifestyle habits, harsh water and weather conditions being a few of them. And if you have the habit of over-exfoliating, bathing with hot water or using harsh cleansers, you are simply aggravating the problem.
As bad as it feels to have dry skin, the good thing is that you can totally manage this issue by making some tweaks in your skincare routine. With the right tips at your disposal, you can easily heal dry skin and prevent it from returning.
I have curated a set of tips from my own experience to help you combat dry skin issues and the many problems that come with it. Just make sure that you follow these tips diligently and work every day to take better care of your skin:
1. Limit Bath Time
It can be tempting to take long, hot water showers when the weather outside is cold. But if you are a dry skin person, you might have to drop this temptation. Bathing with hot water strips your skin of its natural oils thereby leaving it drier and flakier than it already is.
Dermatologists recommend that you bathe with lukewarm water – that is neither too hot nor too cold – and try as much as possible to limit your bath time. 5 to 10 minutes of bathing is all that it takes for your skin to get rid of the dirt, pollutants and sweat. Anything more than that can aggravate your dry skin issues.
2. Use A Soap-Free Cleanser
If your skin is too dry, take a short break from soapy or foaming cleansers. Soapy cleansers can irritate your skin and can further escalate your dryness woes. I use CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar or Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser during extreme winters when my skin gets way too dry and itchy. As the weather gets warmer, I switch back to my normal cleanser.
If you are not too keen on washing your face with a soap-free cleanser, go for a non-foaming cleanser that is rich in ceramides and can help protect the oil barrier of your skin. CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser is one of the best ceramide-rich, non-foaming facial cleansers for dry skin.
3. Shave With Caution
Dry skin can complicate the task of face-shaving. Since shaving scrapes the natural oils off your skin, make sure that you apply a layer of aloe-vera gel on your face before running a razor on it. Aloe vera helps prevent burns and acts as a protective layer between the oil barrier of your skin and the razor. Alternatively, you can shave in the shower when your face is moist enough to retain some of the hydration.
Once you’re done shaving your face, splash some water on it to wash off the leftover aloe-vera gel or any strands of shaven hair. Then pat your face with a soft washcloth until it’s damp enough to apply the moisturizer.
4. Use Alcohol-Free Products
You might have to be extra careful while choosing the right skincare products for your dry skin. Anything that is infused with alcohol can dry out your skin further and leave it feeling irritated. Go through the list of ingredients of every product that you intend to buy and avoid anything that contains components like witch hazel, astringents and alcohol.
5. Avoid Over-Exfoliation
By over-exfoliating, you are simply breaking your skin’s natural oil barrier that only aggravates your dryness woes. Besides being very gentle with exfoliation, make sure that you aren’t exfoliating more than once in 4 to 5 days. That’s all your skin needs to get rid of dry and parched skin and still retain some of its moisture.
6. Use Sleeping Mask At Night
If you aren’t in the habit of using a sleeping mask at night, maybe now is the time to start. A sleeping mask or a night cream works best during sleep hours when your skin is in a restorative mode and is better conditioned to absorb the products you slather it with. Besides fighting dryness, a sleeping mask helps lock the moisture in your skin thereby keeping it adequately hydrated to function properly.
So if you have dry skin, be sure to apply a layer of sleeping mask or a ceramide-rich night cream before going to bed to help combat your dry skin woes.
LANEIGE has the best water sleep mask that works like a charm. You can go around testing some great night creams and sleep masks in the market to find the one that suits you best.
7. Never Skip SPF
The sun out there emits UV rays that can suck the moisture out of your skin. So if you haven’t yet developed the habit of using SPF, start now! Any part of your body that can’t be covered with clothes shall always be protected with SPF. This might sound like an unneeded task right now but trust me, your skin will thank you later in life.
8. Invest In A Humidifier
The dry air around you can end up sucking the moisture from your skin leaving it dry and dehydrated. A humidifier can help boost the humidity level in the air thereby helping your skin retain some of its moisture. I have four of these very cute humidifiers kept in every room of my house, and this has so far been the best investment I have made for my skin.
9. Moisturize Like Crazy
Consider moisturizer your holy grail if you really want to manage your dry skin. As soon as you are out of the shower, pat your entire body with a soft towel and apply moisturizer when your skin is still slightly damp. Make sure that you moisturize every part of your body and face, including the neck and the chest area. If your skin gets dry during the day, do not hold back on moisturizing again.
Now that you know how easy it is to combat your dry skin woes, I hope you feel motivated to implement these tips to give yourself a smooth, glowing skin.