Living with dry skin can feel like a constant battle, but no-one wants to be at war with their own skin. Here are seven really simple things to avoid which will help you and your skin live happily ever after.
This isn't a definitive list, but they're easy adjustments to make and by taking these simple steps you can minimise irritating flare-ups and relieve your symptoms.
Long, hot showers might be relaxing, but they’re not doing much for your dry skin. Instead of moisturising your skin, when you jump in your hot shower every day, it can remove the protective oils that your skin naturally produces.
It’s not just the temperature you should be reducing; the amount of time you’re in has an impact too. Try to get your shower time to less than ten minutes. By reducing the temperature and the time you’re giving your skin more love. It’s also a good idea to avoid washing your face in very hot shower water and wash your face in your sink instead.
This one is another easy win and won’t take you any time; in fact, it’ll save it for you. Scrubbing your skin might make you feel you’re cleaning it correctly, but it’s not doing you or your dry skin any favours at all.
In fact, scrubbing any kind of skin can be detrimental to your skin’s health if you’re not using a facial scrub. So when you wash your face use a facial scrub and use soft, gentle circular motions.
Lots of beauty products contain alcohol, but it’s the levels that are important when it comes to affecting your dry skin. Alcohol is a fat solvent which destroys the natural layer of sebum on the surface. If the alcohol content is below 5% in most cases, it mostly evaporates the moment you apply it.
Some products, particularly things like toners do contain high levels of alcohol and used regularly they can start to dry your skin out. If dry skin is an issue, it always makes sense to research what ingredients a product contains. If alcohol is near the top of the ingredients list and you have sensitive skin, it might be better to leave that one on the shelf and choose something else. Here’s a list of ingredients to look out for: ethanol or ethyl alcohol, denatured alcohol, methanol, isopropyl alcohol, SD alcohol, and benzyl alcohol.
So the same rules in life apply in skin protection, alcohol in moderation isn’t a bad thing, just know your limits.
What’s becoming clear about beauty products is you’ve got to be confident that what you’re putting on your skin is working for you, not against you. Moisturisers are a case in point, we use them to keep our skin hydrated, but they can contain ingredients that pull moisture from your skin. The reason is some moisturisers contain a humectant. They can end up drawing the hydration out of your skin when the weather is dry.
The way to counteract this and prevent losing your precious moisture is to use a moisturiser that contains both humectants and occlusive, so you’re sealing it in, keeping your skin soft.
This is another case of getting out your magnifying glass when you’re shopping. These are the ingredients to keep your eyes peeled for: humectant ingredients like glycerine, AHAs, hyaluronic acid and urea and occlusive ingredients like shea butter or lanolin.
Dry skin can be frustrating, especially when you have to carefully choose the right products and avoid anything that can trigger it. Choosing oil-based make-up might seem like an excellent way to keep your skin hydrated, but it could potentially be doing you more harm than good if you have dry skin. The reason is oil-based make-up can result in your pores clogging up which in turn absorbs your skin’s natural moisture. It’s well worth exploring other options or doing a test to see how your skin reacts.
Products that smell nice can really kick up a stink for your skin. Highly fragranced skin care can irritate your skin, so if you suffer from dry skin, it can make the situation a whole lot worse. It’s best to choose fragrance-free products which will put less stress on your skin.
When you get stressed our, your skin tends to suffer. This, in turn, can knock your confidence and make you more stressed. Stress makes your skin become dehydrated and can prevent it from repairing itself. When you get stressed your body produces higher than usual levels of a hormone called cortisol. When this happens your body produces more oil, and this can cause acne, even if you don’t usually suffer from it. It can also bring on new skin problems or aggravate existing conditions, such as rosacea, psoriasis, and eczema.
So that’s seven dry skin sins you can easily avoid, the power is back in your hands!