Skin can become dry for a wide variety of reasons ranging from age to weather to your genetic makeup. That said, people generally get dry skin when they produce a lower amount of sebum, a naturally produced oil that hydrates your skin and protects it from irritation and inflammation.
Dry skin makes its appearance known — it can appear as bumps, redness or flakes. If your skin is red, irritated or scaly, that means you need to take extra care to hydrate and moisturize your skin.
Fortunately, there are various products and even lifestyle changes that can help you to achieve softer skin – but before you make these changes, you need to understand your skin better.
Dryness can be a genetic trait, but even so, there are various ways that you may be making your skin worse:
You’re Using the Wrong Bar Soaps
The thing is, bar soaps are notorious for throwing off your skin’s ph. balance and drying it out — which is why it’s important to choose your soap carefully.
That said, you don’t have to switch to a cleanser or liquid soap any time soon. If you are looking for a bar soap that won’t dry out your skin, look for brands who offer special soaps for different skin types. Take Erno Laszlo’s soaps for example; these are not your typical soaps as they are specially designed to hydrate your skin.
You’re Over Washing
The prime cause of dry skin is over-cleansing — this is because when you wash your skin too often, it strips down your natural oils and moisturizing factors. Consider over-washing as washing off the moisture from your body.
You’re Showering in Water That’s Too Hot
There is no denying how refreshing a hot shower is — but unfortunately, it can be damaging to your skin. Remember how over washing washes off your skin’s hydrating barrier? Hot water will do that too — but that much faster.
Joshua Zeichner, M.D., the director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center, told SELF that “Excessive exposure to hot water can strip the skin of essential oils leading to irritation and inflammation.”
You’re Not Drinking Enough
Water not only hydrates your insides but your outsides as well! Drinking water helps fluid run through your capillaries and locks moisture in. Dehydration can make you feel sick internally, and it is reflective externally.
You Use Products with Fragrance
Is your body wash, soap or moisturizers made with fragrance ingredients? If yes, that is, without a doubt, a major contributor to your irritated skin. Fragrant ingredients are a major irritant, so they are something to avoid at all costs – but that doesn’t mean you need to forgo a sweet scent!
Trade in your chemically fragrant cream for one that has natural, pleasant smelling ingredients like honey, vanilla, and cocoa and shea. These natural ingredients provide a natural scent, without causing dryness or irritation.
You’re Not Moisturizing
Not moisturizing your hand with nourishing creams is a sure fire way to get dry out your body. Find the right moisturizer with natural ingredients that have healing properties to keep your body feeling nourished, soft and smooth.
Everyone has a different skin type, it’s just up to you to take special care of yourself by understanding what works for you. It’s essential to identify the right products and establish a routine that will keep you feeling and looking rejuvenated.