Banishing dry winter skin – Harvard Health

Do you’ve gotten dry, itchy winter pores and skin? You’re not alone. In the course of the winter months, lots of my sufferers come into clinic asking about the precise cream to make use of to treatment their dry pores and skin. However dry skincare is about a lot extra than simply moisturizers.

Listed below are some dermatologist-recommended suggestions for stopping and relieving dry pores and skin:

  • Harsh soaps should not your pal. Many individuals love the sensation of being “squeaky-clean” after utilizing harsh soaps within the bathe. However these soaps strip your pores and skin of important lipids (fat) that maintain the pores and skin moisturized. As an alternative, attempt a delicate, fragrance-free cleanser and restrict its use to cleansing the underarms and groin, or pores and skin that’s visibly dirty.
  • Heat showers, not sizzling. I look ahead to a steaming-hot bathe on the finish of a chilly winter day as a lot as the following individual. However sizzling water and lengthy showers can irritate and dry out the pores and skin. So can saunas, sizzling tubs, and Jacuzzis. Particularly when your pores and skin is dry, attempt turning the temperature knob down barely in order that the water is heat relatively than sizzling, and restrict showering to as soon as a day for not more than 10 minutes.
  • If you moisturize issues. The very best time to moisturize is when your pores and skin remains to be damp, similar to proper after a bathe. Pat your pores and skin dry gently, then slather up with a great moisturizer from head to toe. Not solely is it more practical, it might additionally really feel much less greasy in your pores and skin because the moisturizer traps present moisture in your pores and skin.
  • The thicker the higher. Ointments or lotions are far more efficient at moisturizing than lotions. Ointments are usually petroleum or lanolin primarily based, and lotions are typically thicker than lotions. Extra moisturizing components to search for embrace shea butter, olive oil, and jojoba oil. In case your pores and skin is flaky, search for exfoliating components similar to lactic acid or urea, however watch out utilizing these components you probably have delicate pores and skin.
  • Go mild throughout. Use skincare merchandise which are mild and unscented, together with deodorants and hypoallergenic laundry detergent. Mild or hypoallergenic merchandise decrease the possibility of pores and skin irritation; avoiding irritation can assist keep the wholesome pores and skin barrier wanted to retain water from the within.
  • Take into account a humidifier. In the course of the dry winter months, utilizing a humidifier to maintain the humidity above 30% could make an enormous distinction in your pores and skin.
  • Nature versus nurture. Some folks have a genetic mutation within the fillagrin gene. This gene is essential within the formation of the outer layer of the pores and skin, which types a barrier that helps the pores and skin retain moisture. This mutation predisposes the affected people to eczema and persistently dry pores and skin. It’s particularly essential for folks with this mutation to comply with all the information above to forestall and handle dry pores and skin.

In case your pores and skin doesn’t enhance after making these adjustments, you could must see a dermatologist. Generally, extreme dry pores and skin may be relieved by a prescription ointment or cream. Dry pores and skin may also point out a extra critical pores and skin situation; a dermatologist can consider your pores and skin and determine on the routine that may aid you essentially the most.

Comply with me on Twitter @KristinaLiuMD

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