Anyone else feeling a little scaly these days? It’s winter, and the cold, dry air outside combined with turning the heat up in our homes and offices takes a toll on our skin. But don’t worry: if your skin’s feeling parched, there are some simple steps you can take to prevent and heal dry skin. What we put in and on our bodies can help us moisturize inside and out.
What Causes Dry Skin?
There’s a reason our dry skin usually gets worse in winter. So much of what causes dry skin is related to the air around us. Cold and dry weather usually means dry skin. Here are some of the big factors that make dry skin worse:
- Weather: when it’s cold and dry outside, it’s harder for our skin to retain moisture.
- Heat: heating sources like furnaces, space heaters, and wood stoves reduce humidity and dry skin.
- Hot baths and showers feel so good when it’s cold, but they can dry skin. Keep showers short and warm rather than scalding.
- Chlorine: swimming is great exercise, but chlorine can dry skin and hair.
- Age: our epidermis gets thinner as we get older so it’s harder for the skin to stay hydrated.
- Harsh soaps and detergents remove the skin’s natural oils.
- Certain medical conditions like eczema cause dry skin. It’s best to talk with a dermatologist or skincare professional about how to treat those conditions.
Can Nutrition Help With Dry Skin?
What you put in your body plays a big role in skin health, and nutrition is an important tool for preventing and treating dry skin. Here are a few tips for hydrating from the inside out:
- Drink lots of water: this is probably the most obvious and most important step you can take to tackle dry skin. Your skin is the biggest organ in your body, and quenching its thirst keeps it healthy.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy skin essentials. You can get your Omega-3s in salmon and other fatty fish, flaxseed oil, fresh eggs, nuts, and avocados. Omega-3 supplements, including fish oil, can also help.
- Vitamins A, C, E, and Zinc are skincare miracles. You can protect your skin by taking a high-quality multivitamin and eating plenty of fruits and vegetables including citrus and greens. Sweet potatoes are another favorite and a great source of Vitamin A.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine. Wine and coffee are delish, but they can seriously dehydrate if you enjoy them too often. Keep things moderate and balance with plenty of water.
How Can My Home Skincare Routine Help With Dry Skin?
Your home skincare routine is one of the most important parts of preventing and healing dry skin. Choose gentle, high-quality cleansers and moisturizers that won’t strip your skin’s natural oils and instead replenish moisture.
- Cleansing: to prevent dry skin, you want gentle cleansing and exfoliation without overdoing it. Don’t wash your face too often, and look for a cleanser that will clean your face without stripping away natural oils. Panthenol, made from Vitamin B5, is an ingredient to look for in your skin cleanser and helps hydrate your skin.
- Moisturizing: there are so many moisturizers available, it can be hard to choose the right one. If you have dry skin, hyaluronic acid is an important ingredient to look for. It’s even been described as “a drink of water for your skin” since it actually pulls water into your skin. Some other hydrating ingredients include glycolic acid and vitamins E, B5 and C. Remember: don’t skimp on quality, especially when your face is involved. Some of our favorites for the very best in hydration are SkinMedica’s Hydrating Complex and iS Clinical Youth Intensive Cream.
- Facial Serums go beyond moisturizers for extra protection. They’re more concentrated, more targeted and offer deeper penetration below the epidermis. As with moisturizers, we’re looking for ingredients that bind water to the skin like hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, argan oil and ceramides (lipid proteins that strengthen the skin’s protective barrier and help skin retain moisture). Some of our favorites include SkinMedica’s HA5 Rejuvenating Hydrator and Elta MD’s Barrier Renewal Complex.
- Body Lotions: So many of us put a lot of thought into skincare for our face but go drugstore cheap when it comes to the rest of our body. High-quality ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycolic acid and aloe can go so far in really hydrating our skin, including rough elbows and knees.
More Tips For Preventing Dry Skin at Home
A home skincare routine is key, and there are a few additional steps you can take at home to prevent dry skin:
- Don’t overheat your home and try using a humidifier at night.
- Keep your skin covered as much as possible when you go out in cold weather.
- Wear rubber gloves while cleaning and washing dishes to protect your hands.
What Are the Best Professional Treatments for Dry Skin?
Professional treatments can be a godsend for dry skin. Facials and laser treatments moisturize, refresh and help your skin create new cells. Some of our favorite options include an intense hydrating Honey Enzyme Facial, which exfoliates and hydrates for a bright, revitalized complexion. Non-invasive laser treatments like Forever Young BBL remove sun damage and refresh skin with short blasts of intense light. BBL treatments stimulate cell growth under the skin and are a perfect wintertime treatment for dry skin.
Say Goodbye to Dry Skin at Radiance
Nourishing your skin with nutrition, products, and medi-spa treatments can help you beat the winter blues by hydrating and refreshing your skin. We offer top of the line skin care products from SkinMedica, Elta MD and iS Clinical to quench your skin’s thirst. Your esthetician can help you find the products, facials and laser treatments that are just right for you based on your skin type, age, and lifestyle. The result? Skin that’s fresh, hydrated and radiant. Take that, winter!