(BPT) - Are you one of the many people who suffer from excessively dry skin? For many, dry skin is worse than just a tight, itchy feeling. Often it can result in flakiness, inflammation and redness. Just when you think you have it under control, another dry patch appears on your body and has you seeking quick relief.
The primary reason your skin becomes dry is due to damage in the skin barrier. Damage occurs when the outer layers of skin lose their ability to maintain normal moisture levels, which is aggravated by several external factors.
'Fast-relief is important but long-term, it is extremely important to also repair the skin barrier,' says Dr. Ranella Hirsch, a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology (FAAD). 'From the skin products you use to the temperature of your shower, many important factors contribute to dry skin.'
Here are five easy tips to help keep dry skin at bay:
1. Stop stripping your skin: Many skin care products contain harsh ingredients that remove your skin's natural oils, leaving it dry and flaky. Hirsch recently partnered with the global beauty brand Dove to help address these issues. 'Many women suffer from dry skin,' says Hirsch. 'I worked with Dove to help create the new Dove DermaSeries, a full range of premium cleansers and creams that I can recommend to my patients as a beautiful way to alleviate dry and compromised skin symptoms.'
2. Turn down the temperature: If you have dry or compromised skin, it is important to use gentle cleansers when bathing, stay in water for less time and softly pat dry. Frequently showering and bathing in hot water can aggravate dry skin so it is important that you moisturize frequently, ideally using an intensely hydrating, rich cream.
3. Be gentle: If you have rough patches on your skin, exfoliating gently can help soften and smooth them out. After your shower, use an emollient-rich balm that contains a blend of natural oils which will help repair and protect severely dry skin and very rough patches. You may want to consider a balm such as Dove DermaSeries Intense Repairing Rough Patch Treatment, which softens rough, thick patches of skin on areas such as knees, elbows and heels.
4. Travel smoothly: Whether arriving by train, plane or automobile, travel can strip skin of the moisture it needs. When traveling, remember to stash a gentle cleanser in your carry-on so you do not have to rely on hotel freebies, which are often harsh on skin.
5. Avoid itchy clothing: Some fabrics, such as wool, tend to worsen itchiness. Wearing either cotton or natural fiber clothing can help minimize the feeling of dry, itchy skin.
By following these simple tips, your skin is poised to look and feel beautiful.