What to do about dry skin
Dryness impacts our skin’s level of defence against the outside world, can cause us discomfort, may even worsen wrinkles and tends to increase with age.
Managing dry skin can be simple if you know how, so here are the DIV team’s basic tips including the ingredients to look out for and avoid, the basic steps to follow in a routine and how to maintain skin health.
Assoc Prof Greg Goodman says:
“Seek advice when using overly active ingredients such as Vitamin A products (like Retinol, Retinal, Retinadlehyde) Vitamin C and Alpha Hydroxy Acids (commonly known as fruit acids). Because of their strength these products take gradual introduction to the skin. Many of these products may be useful to normalise the skin’s dryness long term, but are difficult to bring into a skin care range especially during the colder seasons when there is less humidity so the skin becomes drier.”
Ingredients for dry skin
Dry, sensitive or eczema prone skin needs very gentle soap free cleansers and richer moisturisers and sun blocks. Look out for products with anti inflammatory qualities such as soy, green and white tea and calming agents including feverfew, chamomile and the vitamin B family.
Only dryness from sun damage needs a bit of scrubbing otherwise put the scrubs to the back of the bathroom cabinet.
WHAT SHOULD I AVOID IF I HAVE DRY SKIN?
Toners, exfoliants and astringents should be avoided by almost all skin types but especially those with dry skin, this is because they strip the skin of all oils both good and bad.
WHAT'S THE BEST MOISTURIsER FOR DRY SKIN?
When choosing a moisturiser or cleanser, it’s the base or preparation that’s important. Choosing the richest possible without making your skin excessively greasy is the aim. Most people with dry skin should be able to use a thick moisturizer and even more so in winter.
How about a cleanser?
With cleansers, a similar choice should be made, non-foaming cleansers tend to be better than foaming, and cream cleansers better than gels. Electric cleansing aids such as the Clarisonic can be used by all skin types for extra cleansing.
“Not many people realise that the skin is actually acidic and it’s important it stays this way. Truly clever cleansers will not only match the acid nature of your skin, they will also contain products to match your normal oils and moisturising factors, replenishing these factors after effective cleansing.”
WINTER WEAR AND TEAR
Winter really stresses your skin’s ability to cope by wreaking havoc on its water balance. Low humidity combined with heating means that no matter how wet and drizzly it may appear outside, your skin will often be dry. Autumn is a time to prepare your skin for winter.
“With winter just around the corner, it can be good to start transitioning to richer based products, it is also a good time to supplement your skin's antioxidant reserves to help repair any damage done over summer. Sun damage is a key contributor to dry skin. Up your antioxidants like vitamin’s B, C and E through active skin care and your diet to mop up skin damage from exposure to the sun,” said Assoc Prof Greg Goodman.
Your daily routine
Below is Assoc Prof Greg Goodman’s basic steps to follow to protect and repair your skin. For best results, seek advice about the products that you use. Our range of quality medical grade skincare products have been individually selected and our expert staff offer complimentary skin care advice to new, current and past clients.
A cream based cleanser
Skip this step.
An antioxidant such as Vitamin B will boosts the skin’s immune functions. In dry skin, serums or light lotions are good. In even drier skin, creams are better.
Choose a cream or ointment.
Use roll on or a light lotion sunscreen or choose a moisturiser with a built in sun block. Make sure it is both broad spectrum with a high SPF rating.
Repeat cleanse and moisturise steps.
Actives such as Vitamin A or AHAs can be slowly integrated into your routine but should be under the advice of a professional or our expert staff.
Our favourite skincare product for dry skin is Medik8 Hydra B5 serum. It is a great hydrator that can be used on all dry skin types, including sensitive, and is safe for use in pregnancy.