These 3 Things Could Be Causing Your Dry Skin
Dry skin can be very difficult to deal with. It’s very uncomfortable since it can result in itchiness, redness, peeling, flaking, and might even cause eczema. If you live in a cold or dry climate with little humidity and moisture, your dry skin is probably exacerbated by the weather conditions. Dry skin can be very painful and it requires some extra care to ensure you do not further damage the skin.
What is Dry Skin?
However, moisturizer is a temporary fix for dry skin. It can’t really remedy it. Instead, you might want to consider what other parts of your lifestyle could be exacerbating your dry skin! There are actually a lot of things that we do everyday that could be damaging the epidermis layer of the skin. The epidermis can be affected by lots of things like humidity levels. The epidermal cells are arranged akin to the tiles on a roof and are held together by a “glue” made of lipids (fats), which is what keeps the skin cells nice and flat, making them smooth and neat. When this glue that holds them together gets loosened, this causes the water in the skin cells to escape, hence causing a drop in moisture levels and hence the aforementioned dryness of the skin.
Read on and check if any of these might be causing your dry skin!
Your dry skin might be caused by…
1. Fragrances in skin care or body products
Fragrance tends to bring irritation to dry skin and can also exacerbate the dryness. Fragrances do smell lovely and we would all like to smell like flowers. However, fragrances impart scent on the skin through a very volatile reaction and can act as a sensitizer on the skin, causing itchiness, redness, and dryness. Check your products, especially deodorants, body lotions, and even moisturizers for fragrance. You may not see the allergic reaction immediately, but it does take a few weeks to show. It’s best to avoid all fragranced products on the skin, and whenever you are buying products be sure to get the fragrance-free options. Do some extra research and make sure the ingredients do not contain floral oils that have preservatives and fragrance like lavender, as they might be labeled as “fragrance-free”, but these are also fragrance products even if they are natural so it’s best to stay away.
2. Your soap might be causing the dry skin
Body wash and shampoo often contain ingredients with the purpose of removing oil to clean your body and hair, but this has the added effect of stripping moisture from the skin. Remember that oil is what gives your skin moisture, and if you are already someone who has naturally lower levels of oil production in the body, your shampoos and body washes will likely strip even more oil, leading to dryness of the skin. When buying soaps, face washes, and shampoos, make sure you get formulas with moisturizing properties. Stay away from bar soaps as they are quite harsh on the skin. A formula that is gentle and does not cause your skin to feel tight or dry is a good option.
3. Your skincare might be to blame
Retinoids are an excellent product for anti-aging and preventing wrinkles, by boosting the rate of cell turnover. However, retinoids also cause a lot of irritation and it might be exacerbated if your skin is naturally quite dry. What retinoids do is loosen the glue that holds the epidermal cells together, which is how water escapes and dries the skin out. But that does not mean you have to cut retinoids out of your regimen totally. Try cutting down the number of times you use it, instead of every day try once or twice a week and see how that affects your skin. You could also look for a gentler cleanser that does not make your skin feel tight and raw after washing. Salicylic acid could also be the cause of your dryness. It’s a really effective product to fight acne, but it also has a drying effect on the skin as it dries out the oil in acne to remove it. As a rule of thumb, if your skin feels any kind of redness, itchiness, or irritation after using it, it’s best not to use it anymore.
Try changing up your routines according to the above, and see if your skin dryness improves. If you still experience itching and redness, you might want to consult a dermatologist who can diagnose your skin and prescribe the right skincare!