There are a couple of reasons why your skin may be looking dull and aged, regardless of your skin type. Having dry skin is usually a sign that your skin is not retaining moisture. This could be a result of using soaps that are harsh on your skin, constant bathing, the weather, or some medical conditions.
The skin mostly reflects the level of humidity around it, and low humidity, whether indoors or outdoors can dry up the skin. If you live in very cold climes, your skin may become dry in winter regardless of whether it is oily, combination, or naturally dry skin.
According to a post by the American Association of Dermatology, dry skin can flake, itch, crack and even bleed. If you're dealing with any of these symptoms, one of the best ways to relieve the skin of this discomfort is by moisturizing.
Moisturizing is necessary because it helps to rehydrate the topmost layer of your skin cells and seal in the moisture. Skin experts have warned against taking steamy hot showers or too many baths in a day because they tend to strip your skin of its oily layer which causes it to lose moisture.
It has been advised that you should limit your showers to nothing more than 5-10 minutes daily and you should also use warm water rather than hot water to keep your skin's natural oils and maintain moist and smooth skin.
Asides from hot baths, another thing you should avoid or limit is your use of soaps. If necessary, wash with soaps free of fragrance. Perfumed soaps. deodorant soaps or alcohol-based products can strip your skin of its natural oils and we want to ensure that they stay intact.
The same goes for your laundry; avoid detergents with fragrance and fabric softeners, or ensure you don't use them on clothes that have direct contact with your skin. Remember, you can't control the weather but you can choose your soap.
Also, bath sponges, scrubs, and washcloths are another set of seemingly not harmful things that hurt your skin and leave your skin dry and should be avoided or swapped for products with a lighter touch and that gentle feel on your skin. Although you may be used to rubbing your towel roughly all over your skin after a shower, try patting gently as you wipe going forward and you'd feel the difference. Once done, liberally apply your moisturizer to your damp skin and let it soak in.
However, if you don't already have a moisturizer, here are a few DIY moisturizing tips for you that can be easily put together from your pantry.
• Coconut oil - This contains fatty acids with emollient properties i.e fat or oil that acts as a moisturizer by filling the gap between skin cells and creating a smooth surface. You don't have to mix it with anything and it can be used daily even on sensitive areas of the body such as underneath your eyes and around your mouth.
• Honey - Honey is beneficial to the skin in more ways than one. It has moisturizing, healing, and anti-inflammatory properties. As a completely natural product, honey is safe to use on the skin.
• Oatmeal - Whether you are adding it to your bath or purchasing a cream that contains it, oatmeal is another great source of antioxidant and anti-inflammation that can help relieve dry skin, especially if it's itching.
• Petroleum jelly - You probably have one lying around somewhere in your apartment right now but are you aware that as mineral oil, petroleum jelly helps to cover your skin in a protective layer that traps moisture underneath? Well, it does and the result is a relief from dry and irritated skin patches.
This list could go on but even with all of these options, if you're not actively looking out for your skin at all times, they may not work for you. Lastly, extreme dryness of your skin may be an indication of a serious medical condition. So, if the home remedies aren't working, please see a doctor.
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