… and you don’t even know about it!
Your skin is extremely dry, you try to fight it but it still lacks moisture? Read the following article. We gathered the most common – according to dermatologists – causes of very dry skin. The real wrongdoer might be hiding somewhere below…
1. Long hot showers
Obviously, everyone understands and knows that there is nothing better than a long, hot shower (especially after a hard workout when your muscles cry for relaxation) or a bathtub filled with warm water. Fine, there is nothing wrong if you treat yourself to warm water but remember that such baths and showers deprive the skin of the natural protective barrier and damage the hydro-lipid layer. On a daily basis, try a cooler shower – you will rapidly notice your skin looks better and isn’t so dry.
2. Washing the body using a regular soap
Body soaps look really innocent but most of them include strong detergents and fragrances which may dehydrate and irritate your skin. Moreover, the soap doesn’t go along with the skin pH – it is alkaline whereas the skin is acidic. Another cause of dry skin which feels rough.
If you can’t give up on body soaps, choose the most natural ones, made from oils e.g. Aleppo soap. Dudu osun soap turns out to be an incredible skin enhancer, too.
3. Over-exfoliating the skin
Body and face scrubs are excellent but overusing them harms you instead of helping. That is why most dermatologists advise to decide on one exfoliation routine per week but in the case of sensitive, extremely dry, irritation-prone skin – once in two weeks will do. The scrub is supposed to stimulate the skin to repair and restoration, and remove dead skin cells which have built up on the skin. However, when overused, it irritates new, young epidermis and deprives us of the protective layer. Therefore, if you really care for smooth, regenerated skin – give it time for repair and don’t rub it off too often because all you will get rid of will be healthy skin, not the dead one.
4. Wrong skin care products
Many skin products contain dehydrating alcohols, silicones and parabens. Shower gels, shampoos, all kinds of body lotions abound in comedogenic substances such as SLS, SLES. Try to choose products that have the most natural ingredients possible and are rich in conditioning, moisturising substances and ingredients which prevent water from escaping from the epidermis (natural oils work best here).
5. Too little mineral water
You’ve probably heard that eight glasses a day is a must, right? It is the minimum to keep youthful, supple, elastin skin which never sags or gets dry. Try to follow the rule for seven days – you will spot a huge difference after the week. Of course, except for water, you can have white tea, juices, herbal teas. Hydrating the skin from the inside out is the base of every skin care routine.
6. Fabric softeners also make your skin dry!
Did you know that some detergents may contribute to extremely dry skin long after taking clothes off? If you use a fragranced detergent, the scent itself may trigger serious skin reactions, irritations, itching, dryness, etc. If you suspect your fabric softener makes your skin dry – replace it with a fragrance-free or hypoallergenic conditioner and observe if the skin condition gets better.
7. Retinol addiction
Retinol is a brilliant wrinkle iron and all of those with aging skin value its benefits. However, using it too much or too often may lead to irritation and extreme dryness. During the first 2-4 weeks of using retinol, your skin cells undergo some processes – they adapt to its presence. You must be careful because the skin may get very dry during this period. Apply tiny amounts of retinol (a pea size) and use a moisturiser as a base.
8. You (mis)treat your skin
The skin is the most precious part of our bodies yet we often neglect it. You go out of the shower and forget to moisturise the skin? You don’t remember the last time you’ve used a body lotion? It is true that the body skin is slightly thicker and more resistant than the facial skin but it also has certain needs and limitations. It is going to put up with the mistreatment up to a certain point. Rebuilding the hydro-lipid barrier is quite tiresome. Remember to always use a body lotion and add some natural oils to your bath in the autumn and winter season.
9. You haven’t got the air humidifier
On chilly winter or autumn days, the temperature drops outside and the air humidity drops inside. Your skin doesn’t like it and suffers a lot, losing water. It becomes extremely dry, cracked, sensitive, coarse and itchy.
If you don’t want your skin to stay in the agony, and you’re tired of the discomfort and dry skin because of the heaters – invest in a good air humidifier. A high-quality device doesn’t need to be pricey but its effect on your skin and mood is priceless. You are able to give your skin some relief right away – put damp towels on the heater or put a clay humidifier nearby. If possible, make sure the air at your workplace is humid enough, too.
10. You use too invasive skin procedures
Before calling a beauty salon and making an appointment for an invasive exfoliation or acid treatments – think if your sensitive and extremely dehydrated skin will do well with it after winter.
Sometimes, it is better to let it go and pick a milder procedure… Why don’t you take a different approach in body care and go for a relaxation massage? It is sometimes great to pamper yourself, not tormenting the skin with strong invasive procedures that will need healing afterwards.