Dry skin is uncomfortable, and if left untreated can lead to cracking and damage. The condition is caused by a number of factors, including reactions to particular products, bathing practices, and age. The best ways to treat dry skin is to limit harmful practices, such as bathing in very hot water or using harsh soaps, and to use proper conditioning treatments, such as natural moisturizers and oils that are free of harsh ingredients. Additionally, the application of conditioning treatments is as important as the products when attempting to condition dry skin.
When experiencing a mild to moderate case, dry skin feels rough and looks flaky. When severe, dry skin conditions can lead to cracking and bleeding. In most cases, dry skin is caused by bathing practices and product use, but occasionally is caused by an internal factor, such as disease or lack of nutrients in the diet. If your skin does not respond to external treatments, consult a physician in order to rule out any possible internal causes.
Using the right types of products is important to effectively condition dry skin. For instance, use a good quality moisturizer that does not have alcohol in it. Moisturizers formulated for dry skin are thick and filled with rich oils. Some natural oils that condition dry skin include Shea butter, coconut oil, jojoba oil, and pomegranate seed oil. These oils can be used alone or as part of a skin care cream.
Application is an important part aspect of conditioning dry skin as well. After bathing or washing, pat off excess water with a towel, but leave your skin damp. Apply the moisturizer over your face and skin and leave it for a minute or two, then rub your skin with a towel to remove excess oils and moisturizing creams.
Bathing practices are a common cause of dry skin. A long hot bath or shower can wash away the natural oils that are excreted by the skin. When the natural oils are removed, the skin becomes dry. One way to improve dry skin is to limit shower times and use lukewarm water. When bathing, use bath oils to help replenish the natural oils that wash away with the water.
The use of harsh soaps also can result in dry skin. When trying to condition dry skin on your face or body, use quality soaps that are rich in oils. It also is important to note that antibacterial soaps are particularly drying. Additionally, the dish soap designed to cut through grease and oil on pots and pans will also strip your hands of natural oils.
Age plays a part in dry skin conditions as well. As the body ages, fewer oils are produced by the skin. To keep skin youthful and supple into the mature years, taking steps to condition dry skin and making sure to keep your body well hydrated will have long-term benefits.