5 Common Causes of Dry Skin

5 Common Causes of Dry SkinA lot of people think that dry skin is just a skin type and there’s little you can do about it, but it isn’t always so. In fact, skin dryness can be caused by various factors, both external and internal, and once you neutralize them, you may realize that you actually have normal skin. Here are some of the most common causes of dry skin (and a couple of tips on what to do about them).

Atmospheric Factors (Dry Air, Cold, Heat)

Your skin gets moisture from several sources, including the air. When the air is dry, your skin loses moisture quicker than usual and has less sources to replenish it. During the cold months, harsh wind outside and artificial heating inside dry the skin out, making it itchy and flaky. If you live in a dry or cold climate, you may suffer from dry skin all the year round.

What to do. When outside, protect your skin from the cold and wind with a thick cream or Vaseline. They have occlusive properties and therefore help the skin retain moisture. When inside, use an air humidifier to maintain the optimum humidity level in your home.

Check this out: How to Choose the Right Moisturizer for Dry Skin

Soap and/or Water

Washing your face seems so easy: lather some soap up, apply it your face, rinse. What could possibly go wrong? Everything, in fact. Soap, sulfate-based facial cleansers, over-washing, as well as too hard, hot, or cold water are among the causes of dry skin.

What to do. Never wash your face with soap (its pH is too alkaline for your skin) or facial cleansers that contain SLS/SLES. Make sure that the water is neither too cold nor too hot. Don’t rub your face with a towel and gently pat it dry instead. Don’t wash your face too often or take long, hot baths or showers. If tap water in your home is too hard for your skin, invest in a water filter. Always moisturize your skin after swimming in a chlorinated pool.

Check this out: 8 Tips for Washing Your Face Properly

Skincare Ingredients

Certain skincare ingredients, especially surfactants, anti-inflammatories and exfoliants, can have a drying effect on the skin. They include sulfate (sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate), alpha- and beta-hydroxy acids, retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, alcohol, artificial fragrances and preservatives, etc.

What to do. The best way to prevent dry skin is to avoid drying ingredients altogether. Believe us, you can do without harsh cleansers and alcohol-based toners. However, there are situations when certain drying ingredients are necessary to solve a particular skin problem, such as acne. In such a case, just be very careful and invest in a good moisturizer that will keep your skin hydrated.

Check this out: 5 Ingredients to Avoid in Your Face Wash


As you age, your skin becomes thinner, loses its elasticity and gets dry easier than it used to. Unfortunately, these are the effects of aging that all women encounter at some point in their lives. According to statistics, more than 50% of adults aged 40 or older have dry skin.

What to do. While you can’t stop aging, you can use special products for mature skin that keep the skin hydrated and have added anti-aging benefits (for example, boost collagen production, smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, fight free radicals, reduce pigmentation, etc.).

Check this out: How to Make Your Skin Look Younger

Skin Conditions

Dry, flaky and peeling skin is a common symptom of some skin disorders, such as atopic dermatitis (eczema), psoriasis, rosacea, and contact dermatitis.

What to do. If you suspect that you have a skin disorder, consult a dermatologist who will help find out the exact cause of skin dryness and prescribe a treatment. Remember that self-diagnosis and self-treatment is almost always a bad idea.

Check this out: 5 Natural Products to Soothe Irritated Skin



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