Healthy Skin Tips To Prevent Dry Skin.
Dry or itchy skin can be caused by a number of internal and external factors. To prevent dry skin often requires more thought and care than just rubbing in some cream. The health of your skin can be influenced by how you clean it, what you put on it, what environmental elements you are exposed to and what you feed your body from the inside.
The skin is the largest organ in the body, so it’s health can have a systemic effect on other bodily functions including digestion, metabolism and energy levels. Dry, itchy and flaky skin can be embarrassing but is also a sign of poor health. Try these 10 healthy skin tips for good skin health and to help prevent dry skin.
Hot Water Hurts
Heat damages skin cells and strips them of their natural protective oils that hold in moisture. Less oil directly reduces the skins ability to retain water, resulting in it becoming dry and flaky. Take warm showers instead of using scolding hot water.
Use Soap-Free Cleanser
Strong soaps and detergents that are found in some cleansers will strip the skin of it’s natural oils, making it feel dry, tight and uncomfortable. Look for cleansers that are free from any artificial fragrances or foaming agents such as SLS (sodium laurelth sulphate).
Take Care With Your Toner
Many toners contain alcohol which will rapidly dehydrate anything it touches. Applying toner is a very important step for some people with enlarged or overactive pores or problems with the pH balance of the skin. To help avoid dryness, look for alcohol-free toners that use natural ingredients to help balance acidity and alkalinity.
Exfoliates, such as facial scrubs are designed to help slough away any dead skin cells or debris sitting on the skin’s surface. If exfoliates are used too frequently or too aggressively they may begin to remove the protective oils from the surface and have also been known to encourage excess cell growth, leading to flaky skin. Choose a very fine scrub and allow the particles in the scrub to work by gentle working it in circles. Don’t push too hard and limit exfoliation to once or twice week. If you do suffer from extremely dry or flaky skin, exfoliate less frequently to allow things to settle down. Avoid the temptation to scrub more frequently – while you might feel like you want to try to slough away the flakes, in actual fact you will make it worse.
The action of shaving scrapes away many natural oils and also irritates the skin. To reduce irritation to the skin, shave at the end of or after bathing so that the hair is softer and more pliable. Blunt razors can also cause extra irritation to the skin, so be sure the razor is clean and sharp and use a shaving cream or a gel to reduce skin irritation further.
Reduce Sun Exposure
Of all the healthy skin tips, this one is important for everyone to take note of. In addition to causing dehydration, excessive sun exposure can also cause cell damage leading to wrinkles and rough, leathery skin. To reduce cell damage caused by the sun, wear an SPF 30+ sunscreen all year round when outdoors.
Don’t Be Fooled By Cool Weather
Dressing in warmer clothes can actually result in overheating or excess perspiration which leads to skin irritation and dehydration! Avoid woollen clothing and rather than dressing in one thick layer try a few thinner layers to avoid overheating.
Drinking water is not likely to immediately fix dry skin, however dehydration has been shown to result in an increase in dry, flaky skin. Avoid caffeinated beverages and alcoholic drinks; both act as diuretics, contributing to dehydration.
Use Indoor Humidifiers
Indoor air conditioners can also contribute to dry skin. Use a room humidifier to create more moisture in the air that your skin in having frequent contact with.
Use Moisturiser Designed For Dry Skin
The layers of the skin require a balance of oils and water in order to remain adequately hydrated. A well designed moisturiser will deliver the correct balance of oils and water to the skin and form a protective barrier on the skin to help hold the moisture in. If you are unsure what moisturiser is best suited to your skin, speak to a skin care consultant or a skin specialist.
It’s important to remember that dry skin may be an indication of underlying health problems or deficiencies and can sometimes be a side effect of taking certain medications. Dry, itchy skin has also been linked to conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, diabetes, hypothyroidism and malnutrition. To help prevent dry skin, try improving the health of your skin by following these healthy skin tips above in addition to consulting with a dermatologist or your local health practitioner to ensure any other underlying medical concerns can be addressed.