You would think in an age where we have an abundance of skincare products at our disposal, that learning how to properly care for our skin would be easy. In reality, the options available often make proper skincare even more of a challenge. Which ingredients are best for your skin type, and which ones are only going to make your skincare problems worse?
The first step in answering these questions is to identify your skin type – you know, those categories we use to define our skins characteristics, like dry, oily, normal, combination, or sensitive. Each skin type has its own set of issues that can make proper skincare a challenge. If you’re one of the people who can claim dry skin as your own, you’re likely well aware of this already.
Dry skin requires special attention, yet it’s also prone to being sensitive, irritated, and an even a bit temperamental. Having dry skin can make seemingly simple things like applying cosmetics more of a challenge but more than that, dry skin at its worst can be painful and quick to show the earliest signs of aging.
So, if you have dry skin, what is the best way to take care of it? Let’s take a look at what it means to have dry skin, and a few of the best tips for caring for it properly.
Understanding Dry Skin
At the most basic level, dry skin is caused by underproductive sebaceous glands. These are the little glands in your skin that are responsible for producing sebum, which is the primary moisturizing agent for your skin. Sebum keeps your skin soft, helps it maintain moisture, and provides a protective barrier against the elements. Too much sebum can cause problems as well, and those with overactive sebaceous glands tend to have oily skin, and often deal with breakouts as excess sebum accumulates in the pores and mixes with dead skin, dirt, and bacteria.
Dry skin typically shows itself with a few telltale characteristics. Dry skin can be itchy, easily irritated, and you might have areas of discoloration. Dry skin also tends to look a little lifeless. This is because all those dry skin cells die off and adhere to your skin’s surface, giving your complexion a dull, almost greyish appearance. Dry skin also lacks a protective barrier, so it’s more sensitive to environmental elements, and will often display the first subtle signs of aging before other skin types.
Anyone can have dry skin, but it is more common as we age. Sebaceous glands start to slow down their production levels as we age, which means that dry skin to some degree, is something most of us will come face to face with at some point in our lives.
Caring for Dry Skin
Dry skin can be sensitive, delicate, and fragile. For your skincare routine to be effective in soothing and repairing your dry skin, it also needs to be gentle. Harsh ingredients can make problems with dry skin even worse, as can being overly ambitious with your skincare routine. Here are 6 tips for taking the best possible care of your dry skin.
Watch the Temperature
Are you someone who loves a nice hot shower, or maybe enjoy waking yourself up in the morning with a couple splashes of briskly cold water to your face? These extremes of temperatures can be harmful to dry skin as they can steal moisture, which is already a scarcity. Keep the water lukewarm to prevent stripping important oils from your skin.
Use a Cleanser That’s Designed for Your Skin
If you have dry skin, it’s important that you’re using a cleanser that formulated for your specific type of skin. Look for a cleaner that’s gentle and contains natural, non-irritating ingredients like OZNaturals Vitamin C Cleanser which contains Vitamin E, Vitamin C, rose hip extract, and hyaluronic acid. Also, remember to cleanse your skin at least once a day, preferably twice if your skin can handle it. If you’re using a cleaner designed for your skin, it should easily tolerate and benefit from a morning and evening cleansing. Resist cleansing more often unless there is a specific need for it.
Be Mindful When Applying Moisturizer
Many moisturizers that are formulated for dry skin are designed to seal in moisture. In most cases, it’s best to apply moisturizer while your skin is still slightly damp so that your moisturizer can trap in all that luxurious hydration and hold it close to your skin. If your face is feeling a little dry mid-day, try spritzing your face with a light mist of mineral water and re-applying your moisturizer or hydrating serum over that.
Exfoliation Is Important
When you have dry, often sensitive skin, you might think that exfoliation is just too harsh and will result in painful irritation. The reality of the situation is that if you have dry skin, exfoliation is even more important for you. With dry skin, all those dead skin cells tend to accumulate on the surface. Not only does this give you a less than glowy complexion, those dead skin cells can settle into fine lines, amplifying their appearance. Plus, even the driest skin isn’t immune to breakouts and the accumulation of dead skin cells in your pores is one of the main reasons those pesky pimples appear.
So yes, you should exfoliate but you want to steer clear from harsh, abrasive exfoliants. Instead, choose a gentle enzymatic exfoliant like OZNaturals Bamboo Enzyme Facial Scrub that will gently release the glue that holds those dead skin cells in place.
Be Diligent with Sunscreen
All skin types are susceptible to sun damage, but fragile, dry skin can be at an even higher risk of sun damage. Be diligent about applying sunscreen every time you plan on being out in direct sun, especially between the hours of 10am and 4pm. Even if you’re not planning on soaking up those glorious rays, applying sunscreen every day is a good habit to get into. UV rays can reach your skin when you’re driving in your car, or even sitting by an open window.
Go Beyond Your Face
We tend to focus quite heavily on the face when it comes to talking about skincare, but it’s equally important to care for all the other areas when dry skin is an issue. Apply a rich body moisturizer daily, pay extra attention to your hands and chest, and don’t forget to glide on an emollient, protective lip moisturizer too.
All Skin Is Beautiful
While it might sometimes seem like having dry skin is a curse, the reality is that all skin, in all its various types is beautiful and serves an important role in protecting your health. Treat your skin with respect, by choosing skincare products that have been formulated with natural, gentle ingredients that are effective for soothing your dry skin. With a regular routine, and a commitment to quality, gentle skincare products, your dry skin can be radiant and healthy looking.