Dermatologist recommended products to treat, heal and prevent dry skin.
Challenges brought on by harsh weather create difficulties for your skin. It can be a struggle to keep your skin supple, vibrant and youthful under the best of times. When challenged by conditions that lead to skin dryness, your complexion can become rough, dull, flakey and dry quickly. Fine lines, wrinkles, sagging and crepey skin happens almost overnight.
Dry skin is not just a cosmetic problem.
Dry skin can itch, burn, and break down into eczema. Dermatologists call dry skin ‘xerosis’. We know that the barrier integrity of dry skin is weakened. Once skin becomes dry, it gets drier and drier unless you intervene.
Help heal the weakened skin barrier associated with dry skin by using a good moisturizer twice a day after washing. There is no need to break the bank for a good skin moisturizer though. The best ingredients can be found in economical products.
The best ingredients for dry skin care.
In winter months, or when you are in hot, dry and windy climates, it’s important to use skin care products that hydrate your skin and prevent water loss. You also want creams, butters and lotions that contain oils to replenish skin oils lost and damaged as skin dries out.
Natural botanical oils can be rich in the same linoleic acid, palmitic acid and oleic acids that are natural components of your skin’s outer lipid layer. Look for healing botanical oils such as jojoba oil, sunflower seed oil, castor seed oil, kukui nut oil, coconut oil, apricot kernel oil, avocado oil, cacao butter and shea butter.
Hypoallergenic botanical essential oils with healing properties in the right amount can help heal skin and fight inflammation. The best essential oils and botanical oils include argan oil, rosehip oil, pomegranate seed oil, sea buckthorn oil and borage oil.
Humectants bind water to the skin. Look for humectants such as glycerin, hyaluronic acid, sodium PCA (NaPCA, which is a component of your skin’s Natural Moisturizing Factor), and squalane.
6 Best Budget Friendly Moisturizers for Dry Skin
Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Dry to Normal Skin $28 at the date of this post: a rich and cosmetically elegant moisturizer great for mature skin, and even the driest and most sensitive complexions. Enriched with ceramides, squalane, glycerin, vitamins A, C, E and antioxidants. Free of parabens and fragrance. Non-comedogenic.
Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Oily to Normal Skin $26 at the date of this post: a light textured deeply therapeutic facial moisturizer that’s oil free and won’t clog pores. Recommended for oily and acne prone complexions. Hypoallergenic. Fortified with squalane, glycerin, vitamins A, C, E and antioxidants. Free of paraben and fragrance.
Natural Face, Hand and Body Lotion $22 at the date of this post: Light textured but deeply hydrating. Made from a blend of organic aloe and botanical oils including sunflower oil and coconut oil. Fortified with glycerin and vitamin E. Hypoallergenic and free of parabens and fragrance.
Natural Face and Body Butter Cream $26 at the date of this post: A deeply hydrating blend of organic aloe and botanical oils including apricot oil, avocado oil, sunflower oil, jojoba oil, coco and shea butter. Fortified with glycerin. Hypoallergenic and free of parabens and fragrance.
Face Booster Oil for Sensitive Skin $44 at the date of this post: Rich in a blend of organic botanic oils known to be rich in essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins and natural anti-inflammatory components. Use alone or add a few drops to boost the healing effectiveness of your facial moisturizer or lotion. Ingredients include organic kukui nut oil, sunflower oil, jojoba oil, castor seed oil, rosehip oil, pomegranate seed oil, and argan oil. Vegan. Fragrance and paraben free.
Omega Enriched Face Booster Oil $44 at the date of this post: This deeply healing and hydrating oil can be used alone or several drops can be blended with your moisturizing cream or lotion. Made from a blend of organic kukui nut oil, sunflower oil, jojoba oil, castor seed oil, rosehip oil, pomegranate seed oil, argan oil, cypress oil, borage oil and sea buckthorn oil. A super oil for fighting facial inflammation because borage oil is one of the best sources of gamma-linoleic acid proven to have strong anti-inflammatory benefits. Vegan. Fragrance and paraben free.
Should you use petroleum jelly or mineral oil?
Budget-friendly moisturizers are often made from by-products of crude oil and gasoline production. These include mineral oil and petrolatum (petroleum jelly), both of which dermatologists have recommended for years. They do work to treat dry skin, and they are cheap. These occlusive ingredients trap water by preventing evaporation. Unfortunately, they lack the complex fatty acid composition that is similar to your skin and that can replenish lost skin lipids. They also lack vitamins, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties found in the best natural oils. In my opinion, moisturizer formulations using natural botanical oils and pharmaceutical grade ‘smart’ ingredients like ceramides, squalane, hyaluronic acid and sodium PCA are far better choices.
When should you splurge on a special skin care product for severely dry skin.
The creams, oils, lotions and butters listed above will treat and heal all types of dry skin. If your facial skin is extremely crepey, limp, saggy and troubled by fine lines and wrinkles, consider splurging on a serum with super powers for plumping skin with water-holding power.
The smartest splurge is my Instantly Luminous Multi-Action Serum $82 at the time of this post: Created with multiple molecular weights of hyaluronic acid so that this water sponge will stratify throughout many layers of your skin, plumping instantly to a dewy, hydrated and youthful luster. Hyaluronic acid binds 1000 times its weight in water. Skin loses water as we age and in severely dry conditions. This product works instantly to replenish skin water loss. It also is formulated with sodium PCA and glycerin for even greater effectiveness.