When your skin doesn’t retain enough moisture, it starts to dry out. This usually occurs when skin cells produce less oil than necessary. This lack of sebum results in the skin feeling tight with a dull or rough-looking texture. “That feeling of your skin being tight can happen all over your body. Wherever you have oil glands, and there is less sebum being produced than necessary, your skin will feel dry and tight,” says Dr. Debra Jaliman, board-certified NYC dermatologist and Assistant Professor of Dermatology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. The use of harsh products or a damaged skin barrier can also be a reason for your dry skin.
Since dry skin lacks moisture, it can crack, wrinkle, or get damaged by external aggressors more easily, so it’s essential to keep its moisture in place. Besides your ceramide moisturizer and hyaluronic acid serum, you can relieve your thirsty skin with these hydrating natural remedies
Repleted with several essential antioxidants and vitamins, avocados can nourish your skin and restore a natural glow. Avocado pulp is a high source of B-carotene, lecithin, and linoleic acid that moisture the skin, while vitamin E enhances hydration even more. Besides its high moisturizing qualities, avocado has anti-itching properties — another reason it’s very good for dry skin.
How to DIY: Puree half an avocado and mix it with one teaspoon of olive oil and honey. Layer the mixture to your complexion and decolletage and leave it for 20 minutes before washing it off. Try sticking to the habit, and apply the mask twice a week for significant results.
Sunflower seed oil
Rich in linoleic acid, vitamins A, D, and E, the sunflower seed oil is great for softening redness and skin irritations. However, what makes sunflower seed oil one of the best natural remedies for dry skin is its emollient properties that help the skin retain its moisture. That’ll leave you not only with a dewy, radiant complexion but also a more consolidated skin’s protective barrier.
Another natural remedy that does wonders for dry skin is coconut oil. Coconut oil contains a great source of saturated fatty acids praised for being great hydrating moisturizers. Studies actually found that coconut oil is very effective for skin hydration delivering an increase in the level of lipids on the skin’s surface when used regularly.
The use of oats as topical agents for soothing and cleansing the skin dates back to ancient times. Oatmeal can be considered a multitasker natural emollient filled with lipids and fatty acids, polysaccharides, enzymes, vitamin E, proteins, and saponins. These compounds have been shown to have anti-inflammatory and anti-itching properties, which you already know work great for dry skin.
More than that, did you know that colloidal oatmeal (aka oats ground into an extremely fine powder) is currently approved as an over-the-counter skin protectant drug? Just add a cup of powdered oatmeal to a warm bath, and you’ll notice its particular hydrating effect.
Milk is known to have hydrating properties which is why it has been used as a natural remedy for dry skin since ancient times. Milk also contains lactic acid, which helps exfoliate dead skin cells and increases the skin’s ability to retain moisture. Finally, milk’s soothing nature can preserve the skin’s delicate pH levels, lighten the skin and strengthen the skin barrier.
Maybe you won’t fill your entire bathtub with milk, as Cleopatra used to, yet you can use milk in some other ways to treat dry skin. For your complexion, dip a cotton ball in milk and dab all over the face. After 20 minutes, wash with cold water and apply a moisturizer to lock in hydration. For the rest of your body, you can soak a washcloth in cold milk and place it on dry skin patches for 5-7 minutes. Then gently wash off the milk with another cloth soaked in lukewarm water. In this way, the natural milk moisturizer will remain on your skin for longer.
Honey has records of its therapeutic benefits dating back to 2000 B.C. when ancient Greeks and Egyptians used honey to treat skin and burn wounds. Now the theory. It’s been shown that honey is antiseptic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antiallergenic, and has antioxidant, healing, and moisturizing effects. It promotes rehydration, stimulates immunity, and is beneficial for all types of skin. Honey’s properties may also contribute to tissue repair and reduce wounds’ chronic inflammation, promoting healing. If you use organic Manuka honey, you hit it big!
Petroleum jelly is a mixture of mineral oils and waxes, which form a semisolid jelly-like substance. The main benefits of petroleum jelly come from petroleum, the main ingredient, which helps seal the skin with a water-protective barrier, being one of the best occlusives. In 2017, a group of researchers found that the skin barrier improved after using petroleum jelly on older people’s dry skin. This encourages the idea of using petroleum jelly to hydrate dry, cracked skin. You can use a petroleum jelly-infused product, such as these occlusive moisturizers to keep your dry skin hydrated and soften.
Having antiseptic and soothing properties, aloe vera gel is one of the most popular natural remedies to moisturize dry skin. A 2003 study, concluded that aloe vera gel improves skin integrity, helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles, and relieves dry skin. If you have a fresh aloe vera plant, cut open a leaf, squeeze the gel out of it, apply it on the skin, and leave it on for 15 minutes before rinsing it off. This will keep your skin moisturized and protected by forming a shielding layer.
How to care for dry skin
- Try to avoid excessive use alcohol, caffeine, and watch your salt intake.
- Don’t use heavily scented products, as they may further irritate the skin. Better opt for unscented or lightly scented products.
- Limit to a 5 minutes shower daily. If you spend more time bathing, it can strip away the skin’s oily layer, causing it to lose moisture. Also, use lukewarm water instead of hot water.
- Always apply moisturizer right after bathing on damp skin. This will help your skin seal in moisture longer and better.
- Use fragrance-free laundry detergents and avoid fabric softeners, or look for skin-friendly ones.
- Never scratch the dry areas, better apply a moisturizer to control the itch. Also, try placing a cold pack on the area to relieve the feeling.
- Use a humidifier in the winter, when the skin tends to dry out more.
- Avoid wearing wool and other fabrics that can irritate the skin.
- In skincare and makeup, ensure the products don’t include elements that can dry out the skin, such as SLSs, alcohol, or fragrance, or irritants, like retinol or glycolic acid.
- Try staying away from bath sponges, scrub brushes, or washcloths, or use a light version of them. For the same reason, pat the skin dry when toweling, without rubbing.