Although dry skin tends to rear its ugly head more so in the colder months of fall and winter when there is less moisture in the air, it can be a year round concern for many. Those who reside in drier climates such as the desert or mountains, can often find themselves constantly in battle with keeping their dermis smooth and silky. Besides the obvious choice of applying lotions and creams to any affected areas, there are everyday things you can do to prevent and combat dry skin from occurring more frequently.
Keep that shower water temperature down to warm status. While a hot shower may feel fantastic on a cold day or a great stress reliever, the hot water strips your skin of natural oils it needs to trap moisture in. Limit your time in the bath or shower down to 5 to 10 minutes, and pat yourself dry afterwards. Immediately following your bathing routine is the best time to apply lotions or moisturizers as your pores are the most absorbent during this period.
Use gentle cleansers and soaps. For any facial cleansers, look for ingredients that are alcohol and fragrance free as these products can irritate the skin. Though it can be difficult to refrain from frequently washing our hands especially during cold and flu season, this repetitive process also causes them to become drier. While we can’t always select the soap we use when needing to wash up, a good practice would be to carry a good cream or lotion so you are able to moisturize immediately after.
Laundry detergents that have too much fragrance can irritate the skin, as can fabrics are materials that are scratchy or itchy like wool. Stick to cotton or silk undergarments that are breathable and do not harshly rub against you.
Another natural “beauty-from-the-inside-out” strategy is to add omega 3 essential fatty acids to your diet – either fish oil or flaxseed oil. These foods can act as great moisturizers, rapidly replenishing your lost skin oils as well as reducing the amount of skin care products that you need to purchase.
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Lastly, the daily essential everyone should be doing to not only prevent dry skin but to protect it from damaging UV rays is applying lip balm and sunscreen daily. While the sun does provide the health essential Vitamin D, as with many things, it is best when used in moderation. Protect your skin any way you can, as it’s the first line of defense to protect you!