Dry Skin Facts and Tips During the Winter Season

Wintereffects our skin quickly by drying it out.  For those who have dry skin, the uncomfortable tight, dry and itchy feeling accompanied by redness begins to seep in during this time of year.  Here are some important facts and tips to keeping skin hydrated during the colder weather season.

The outside layer of our skin is known as thestratum corneum, which, acts as a wall of protection against the outside world.  With the use of harsh detergents, cleansers, soaps and other topical agents this can remove fatty acids from our skin causing disruption to the skin's barrier function.  Moreover, our skin contains lipids, which are found in the stratum corneum, and lipids aid the skin in keeping it hydrated, and help it to avoid disruption of the skin's barrier function.

One example of a lipid is aceramide, and ceramides are native to the skin and are necessary to keep the skin healthy and balanced.  However, due to aging, trauma, and other factors our ceramide levels become depleted.

It has been discovered that people who suffer from psoriasis, eczema, and other types of dermatitis are deficient in ceramides, so best to replenish the skin as much as possible with a moisturizer that contains ceramides to keep a healthy and balanced moisture levels in the skin.  Here are a few tips to keep or restore hydration levels in the skin during the colder months, and prevent the skin from feeling dry and compromised.

Hydration Tips For Dry Skin Conditions:

  • Gentle exfoliation a few times per week for dry/sensitive skin is helpful.  Dead surface skin will act as a barrier for hydrators to penetrate. Removing the dead layer of skin will allow hydrators to penetrate deeper.  
  • Indoor heaters wreak havoc on our skin and dry it out.  Don't run the heater full blast at night during sleep or you will wake up with dry skin and dry sinuses!
  • Adding a hydrating serum to your skincare regimen makes all the difference.  A good serum should contain a large enough concentration of one or more of the following ingredients: Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium PCA, Sodium Hyaluronate, lipids/ceramides.   
  • The serum will act as a binding agent to pull moisturizer down and hold it deep in the skin.
  • Follow with a good moisturizer immediately to bind it to the skin to allow for a higher absorption rate.
  • For the body, moisturize within the first 90-seconds once you are out of the shower for maximum absorption of moisturizer.  Use two (full shot glasses) of moisturizer for the body in order to keep skin adequately hydrated.
  • The sun seems like it is hiding and does not feel as strong, but UVA rays are always at work rain or shine, penetrating through clouds and damaging our skin - causing it to dry out.  Continue to protect your skin during winter with a good SPF 30, and make sure to reapply.

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