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Dry Skin

Treat dry skin by using a skin care routine that retains skin moisture and heals damaged skin barrier.

Any part of your skin can suffer from dryness. The first and most common areas to show dryness are usually the arms and legs. Hands and feet can also become dry, and here the dry skin often thickens on the palms and soles. Facial skin is fragile, thin, and often becomes dry with age as oil glands produce less oil.

Dry skin is worse in dry climates or in winter when outside air is windy and cold, and inside air is heated.

This environmental combination draws moisture out of skin, leading to damaged skin barrier and skin dryness. Lost or damaged skin lipids, protein and water are all involved. Heal dryness, and prevent skin chapping and dry skin eczema with simple changes in your skin care routine.

Remember, Complete Skin Care gives you the best results. Dr. Bailey's Complete Skin Care involves the 4 essential steps of,

  1. Cleanse
  2. Correct
  3. Hydrate
  4. Protect

What is the best way to wash and cleanse dry skin?

CLEANSE skin using only gentle, hypoallergenic, non-drying soaps and skin cleansers. Excellent options include naturally made soaps that retain deeply hydrating glycerin such as my Naturally Best Bar Soap, Natural Foaming Liquid Hand Soap and Natural Shower Gel. Other great options include pH balanced SYNDET skin cleansers such as VaniCream Cleansing Bar and my Extremely Gentle and Daily Foaming Facial Cleansers.

Lather-up soap or cleanser on only the parts of your skin that need it, such as skin areas that create body odor, have excess oil, or that have become soiled. I tell my patients these areas are usually the face, neck, upper chest and back, armpits, groin, buttocks, hands and feet. The larger skin surface areas of the trunk, arms and legs are drier, less oily, less often soiled, and don’t typically need direct application of cleanser or soap lather. 

Use cool to warm water when cleansing dry skin; bathe and wash with cooler water to prevent over-stripping of your natural skin’s natural oils. Hot water removes skin oils too efficiently, just as it removes oily residue from dishes, pots and pans. Your skin is not that tough, so use warm water instead of hot water to prevent dry skin.

CLEANSE AND CORRECT flakey scale by adding exfoliation twice a week during the bathing and moisturizing process can help to remove dry skin flakes on your skin surface, and improve skin barrier integrity. You can physically exfoliate by using a rough shower sponge or exfoliating cloth such as the Salux Cloth. You can also use pH balanced exfoliating cleansers such as my Triple Action Exfoliating Cleanser. This helps to instantly smooth skin texture.

CORRECT AND HYDRATE by adding ‘chemical’ exfoliation when you apply a moisturizer that contains an alpha hydroxy acid after toweling skin dry. My favorite AHA to smooth skin texture is glycolic acid. An excellent option for body skin is my Glycolic Acid Body Lotion. It also helps to correct skin structure by compacting the dead cell layer, improving barrier integrity to help reduce the risk of dryness. The best glycolic acid products to use for dry skin are moisturizers that contain high, professional-grade levels of glycolic acid. These also stimulate your skin to produce hyaluronic acid, which helps skin to naturally hold onto moisture to prevent skin dryness. Only use glycolic acid once any redness and itch from dry skin is healed.

What are the best skin creams and lotions for dry skin?

HYDRATE is the most important skin care step to heal dry skin. Do this by applying a moisturizing cream, lotion or ointment to your skin daily. Mineral oil, botanical oils or petrolatum are the classic skin moisturizing ingredients. My preference are botanical oils as in my Natural Lotion and Natural Butter moisturizers which are deeply hydrating and hypoallergenic too. Products with advanced ingredients like sodium PCA (part of your skin's Natural Moisturizing Factor), hyaluronic acid, ceramides, squalane, and with time-honored ingredients such as glycerin, are also important therapeutic options to hydrate dry skin. My Instantly Luminous Multi-Action Serum  contains high concentrations of hyaluronic acid and sodium PCA to instantly rehydrate and plump dry facial skin. Top with one of my Daily Face Creams that have additional ingredients from this list of powerhouse skin hydrators. Know that all moisturizers work best when applied within the magic 3 minutes after skin has been wet and the excess surface water toweled off.

PROTECT skin daily from UV rays that cause skin thinning, fragility, and ultimately dryness. Sun damaged skin gradually looks like “an old leather purse”, and dries out and flakes easily.

Does drinking enough water treat and prevent dry skin?

No! Contrary to popular belief, your dry skin is not caused by your failing to drink enough water. I’m sure you’ve noticed that taking a bath does not quench your thirst. Your body is more complex; only the most severe dehydration will cause skin to become flaccid and dry. This means that if you have dry skin, your skin care routine is how you fix the dryness.

Get rid of dry skin with your skin care routine, not a glass of water!

The best skin care to prevent and treat dry skin involves a complete routine with the right products to Cleanse, Correct, Hydrate and Protect your skin. Your skin care choices can keep your skin supple, hydrated and with a more dewy and youthful appearance at any age.