Do you know that dry skin is generally more sensitive and is more susceptible to breakage and bruising? That’s reason enough to make finding a great moisturizer a priority this winter.
As the temperature falls and we begin turning on heaters to stay warm, your “normal’ skin may start to feel dry, and if you had dry skin to begin with, that dryness becomes exaggerated.
Dry skin is a result of trans epidermal water loss, which happens when water quickly evaporates through the skin because the skin is unable to retain the moisture. Although some people genetically have dry skin, just about anyone can develop it. It is more likely to happen as one gets older or if you live in a low humidity environment, like a desert, or seasonally, as the temperature drops.
Here are a few things that make dry skin worse and how to counteract them.
- Long “hot” showers or baths generally will strip the skin of its protective oils and increase trans epidermal water loss, leading to drier skin afterwards. We suggest using lukewarm water for baths and showers and keeping them short.
Pro Tip - follow showers with an application of an oil-based moisturizer while the skin is still damp, the oil will act as an occlusive and seal in the moisture on the skin.
- Winter weather brings with it low humidity, and when combined with the heating we use to stay warm, it is no wonder the skin feels drier in the colder months.
Pro Tip - Use a humidifier to add moisture to the indoor air
- Skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis are worsened when the skin is dry, often times becoming itchy and inflamed.
Pro Tip - Maintaining a healthy skin barrier by keeping your skin well moisturized is very important in effectively keeping the symptoms of these skin conditions in check.
A few other ways to help alleviate dry skin:
Use a pH balanced gentle cleanser - this will cause the least amount of disruption to your skin’s barrier while you cleanse. A healthy skin barrier is important to minimizing trans epidermal water loss.
Limit showers and baths to no longer than 15 mins; this is long enough to rehydrate but not too long as to start to weaken the skin’s barrier.
Exfoliate to get rid of that top layer of dead skin cells which builds up over time and can leave the skin looking dull with dry patches.
- Moisturize when your skin is still damp to lock in moisture. We recommend occlusives which are moisturizers that work by forming a protective layer on the surface of your skin. This barrier prevents moisture loss. Our favorite occlusive is our Bolden Shea Oil which we especially love for the winter months.