Has your dry winter skin rolled over to the warm summer months? Dry skin can be frustrating, especially when you are constantly moisturizing with no results. Review our list of sneaky dry skin culprits to see if you are inadvertently feeding your irritation.
#1 Fragrance. No, we aren't saying not to spritz yourself with your favorite perfume; this is referring to the hidden scents in many of your day-to-day routines. Facial lotions, body lotions, body washes, detergents, deodorants, fabric softeners, fabric sprays and so forth can all contain fragrance which tends to irritate already dry skin or make it worse. Check the ingredients list of your items and eliminate any products containing the word fragrance. We often suggest ‘free’ or ‘clear’ items and non-fragrance skin care products. *Don’t want to throw away your delicious country cucumber melon lotion? Opt for high quality products with natural scents containing ingredients like shea butter, coco bean, honey or vanilla.
#2 Soap. Nothing strips skin of moisture faster than cleansing. This is why those who tend to shower multiple times a day or continuously wash their hands tend to suffer from dry skin. Use gentle (and fragrance free) products, especially hand and body soaps, and moisturize with a high quality lotion/oil within 10-20 min. of washing. *Fabric Softeners can also contain high amounts of soap, which can irritate dry skin, always check ingredients.
#3 Hard Water. Hard water contains a high concentration of minerals like magnesium, lead, and zinc. These minerals can leave a film on skin that causes dryness. Investing in a home filtration system can get pricey- Dr. Dennis Gross, NYC Dermatologist, suggests a great alternative- add products high in vitamin A and C to your beauty routine to counteract the film left by hard water.
#4 Chlorine & Salt Water. Our skin is only made to withstand being in water for certain lengths of time. Whether swimming in a pool or ocean, taking a bubble bath or a long shower water can ultimately strip the natural oil barriers protecting our skin. During the summer, especially in coastal regions like Charleston, water activities can cause or worsen dry skin symptoms. To make things worse, both, chlorine and salt water dehydrate your skin intensifying the affects of the water. *Moisturize after a long swim, as you would after a shower, to best control the effects. Those with severe dry skin can apply lipid based products that will actually block the damage from prolonged water exposure.
#5 Air Conditioning. Yes, it is a fact that both heat and air conditioning can harmfully affect the moisture levels of your skin. Air condition pulls humidity out of the air causing, worsening or irritating dry skin. *Running a humidifier in your bedroom, or even your office, (through summer and winter) can help to balance the moisture in the air and relieve dry skin.
If your dry skin doesn't improve with these lifestyle alterations, worsens or becomes painful come visit us at Germain Dermatology. Dr. Germain and staff are experts in skin care and will help you get to the root of your dry skin! Call today 843-881-4440