Winter Woes: Treating and Preventing Dry Skin

Winter weather leads to lots of dry skin. Some people don’t have the problem the rest of the year because the weather, not a medical condition, is causing the problem. If that’s your experience, these tips will help you treat and prevent the dryness, itching, and other problems.

Stay moisturized.

After your bath or shower, dry off and put on a good, moisturizing lotion. Helpful ingredients include aloe vera and vitamin E, which are good for your skin. Look for a petroleum-based formula, which works better in winter months. Some people use specialized formulas specifically for extremely dry skin. Others go to dermatologists for professional advice and product recommendations or prescriptions.

Avoid itchy clothes.

You might have skin problems only when you wear certain winter clothes, like wool sweaters or a specific jacket. Keep track of what you wear each day. If you notice a pattern, try eliminating that garment and others made of the same material. You may have a mild reaction to the fibers, which is more common than you might think.

Recommended Dry Skin Treatments
Jan Marini Instant Refining Exfoliator | Jan Marini Skin Zyme Mask | Obagi Hydrate Facial Moisturizer

Shorten your showers.

Bathing removes some of the protective oils that keep your skin moisturized. Take shorter showers to reduce your exposure to the hot water that’s also drying out your skin. Make sure, when you’re finished, to pat yourself dry and use moisturizer.

If you’re feeling itchy, take a warm bath instead. Add an oatmeal-based bath soak from the big-box store or pharmacy. Alternatively, a little baking soda in the water can also help the itching. 

Humidify your house.

In wintertime, you turn on the heat, which removes moisture from the air—and, by extension, your body. A humidifier helps. You can also try turning down the heat and wearing layers of clothing.

If the dry, itchy skin persists, visit your dermatologist. He or she can prescribe stronger moisturizers. The doctor can also determine if your skin is a symptom of a bigger problem.

Check out this video for more tips to keep your winter skin flake-free and smooth:


January 09, 2015 by Amanda Brown
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