Moisturizers are an important staple in daily skincare, and especially important during the winter months when it is easy for the skin to become dry.
The Problem of Dry Skin
Dry skin is a widespread concern that typically worsens with age. Over time, the skin loses its ability to produce oil that acts as a moisturizer. In the winter months, this problem is amplified by environmental factors such as low humidity and lower temperatures. More exposure to indoor heating, which is drying for the skin, compounds this problem. Dry skin during the winter months is a common problem.
- Dry skin is caused by a combination of genetic factors as well as environmental triggers. Itching, irritation, and redness are common symptoms of dry skin. As the skin dries, the itch and inflammation become more pronounced. Cracking of the skin and bleeding can also occur when advanced and can lead to further complications.
- Low humidity and temperature is the most common cause of moisture loss in the skin.
- Indoor heating and frequent bathing (especially using hot water) are compounding factors that play a role during the winter.
The Role of Moisturizers
In dry skin, the barrier function, which helps regulate moisture levels in the skin, is weakened. Moisturizers can help to restore the barrier function and better regulate moisture levels in the skin. For best results, moisturizers should be used regularly.
- Moisturizers help to restore the effect of the barrier.
- Moisturizers become especially important in the winter when various environmental factors conspire to worsen dry skin.
- Moisturizers should be used daily during the winter.
- Use moisturizers with a low number of ingredients and ones that don’t contain fragrance. This advice is critical if you have sensitive or irritated skin.
- Moisturizers are best applied immediately following a bath or a shower.
- When showering or bathing, avoid hot water as it dries the skin. Use lukewarm water, and don’t take excessively long showers. After showering or bathing, gently pat your skin with a towel, leaving some moisture. Moisturize the skin gently while the skin is still moist, locking in the available moisture.
- Moisturizers with ceramides can provide the skin with extra support in those with chronic dry skin.