Dry skin is rarely a serious condition, but it can still be irritating to live with. Dry skin will often leave your skin feeling rough, tight and more sensitive to heat and cold. You might have flaky and dry skin, or it might crack and bleed.
Dry skin tends to affect people more as they get older. According to one source, around 50% of people of older adults have dry skin. It may also be a seasonal issue, affecting you more in the winter when you are inside with the central heating switched on.
Some people experience dry skin in the summer as a result of sun exposure. And finally, atmospheric humidity and humidity levels in your home will have a huge impact on your skin.
How to get rid of dry skin
If you’re looking for pharmacist-approved solutions to dry sky, we have some excellent suggestions. You may only need to make small changes to your routine to make big changes to your skin.
1. Skip the soap
Those with dry skin often have a habit of over-cleansing their skin. While your skin might feel soft and supple while you are sudsing up the soap, it will crack and dry out as soon as it is dry.
Soap has a drying effect on the skin because it strips away the natural oils. To counter this, you should consider switching to a non-soap cleanser. This SebaMed Olive Cleansing Bar is great for removing impurities without drying out your skin.
In the shower, try cleansing with a lotion instead of turning to your trusty shower gel. It won’t lather up like you are used to, but it will leave your skin feeling softer than ever.
2. Have cooler showers
A steamy hot shower might feel good while you’re in it, but the heat can leave your skin feeling zapped of all moisture. Turn your shower down a few degrees and try not to spend too long in there. The simple step of cutting a 10-minute shower down to 5 minutes can help to reduce dryness.
3. Lock in moisture
After your shower, pat your skin dry with a soft cotton towel. Now it’s time to lock in that moisture before it has time to sneak away. Use an oily moisturiser or emollient to help increase moisture levels.
4. Use a humidifier
During the winter months, central heating can make the air in your home very dry. If you have a wood-burning stove, this can amplify the drying effects. Try running a humidifier at night to see if this has a positive impact on your dry skin.
5. Increase your water intake
Your body needs to be sufficiently hydrated for your skin to be hydrated. Skip the high sugar soft drinks and reach for the real deal. Drinking around eight glasses of water per day can help to prevent dehydration from the inside.
Caffeine can have the opposite effect and leave you feeling very dehydrated. Try switching your morning tea or coffee to herbal tea to increase your water intake.
6. Take an oat bath
If your dry skin is feeling very sensitive, you could try a creamy oat bath. Simply fill a washcloth mitt with colloidal oatmeal and tie up the end with a bottle. Fill a bath with warm (not hot) water and put the washcloth in the water. You should see a milky residue seeping out of the washcloth.
Oats contain water-binding polysaccharides (long-chain sugars) and hydrocolloids which help your skin to retain moisture by acting as an emollient. Sit in your bath for no more than 10 minutes before patting your skin dry and applying a moisturiser.
7. Think about your diet
Dry skin can be caused by allergic reactions to common foods. Try cutting out dairy, wheat and soya to find out if you are sensitive to these ingredients. Gradually introduce them and pay close attention to your skin.
To ensure you don’t miss out on any nutrients, make sure you are eating a rich and varied diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables and other whole foods. Cutting out processed foods and sugar may help to alleviate your dry skin.
Explore our dry skin collection for products that will help you tackle your dry skin problem.