Itching to get rid of dry skin this winter?
The constant itch on your back, lower legs and arms is so annoying! Perhaps you’re experiencing red cheeks, taut skin and cracked lips. Cold weather combined with increased use of central heating has a drying effect on the skin. Even people with ‘normal’ skin will notice this change.
Why is this happening?
Cold air tightens the skin’s pores and reduces blood circulation. This reduces the naturally occurring oil known as sebum, which acts as a protective layer and traps moisture next to the skin. With humidity in the air lower during winter, the cumulative effect is that skin starts to dry out. As the sebaceous oil that protects the skin is reduced during winter, this allows bacteria to enter the pores easily, resulting in outbreaks. Sufferers from skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and rosacea complain of increased irritation in the affected areas, along with expanded areas of dryness and inflammation. As we age our skin sheds at a slower rate which can also pose problems. It’s called Cell Renewal Factor (CRF) and is one of the biggest contributors to premature aging. Hence the reason our children’s skin appears so soft, clear and flawless.
Steps you can take at home:
- Turn the thermostat to the lowest setting you can tolerate when indoors and wear extra clothing to compensate.
- Limit exposure to hot/dry environments such as heated rooms and cars, or rooms containing open fires or wood-burning stoves.
- Omega 3 and 6 oils have been found to play a role in reducing inflammation. Adjust your diet during the winter months to eat foods rich in such oils.
- Drink water with every meal and throughout the day, since a lot of moisture is lost through dry skin (because the skin barrier is not working properly).
- Use fabric material that doesn’t ‘catch’ against the skin. Pillowcases and undergarments made of silk are not only soft and less irritating but don’t steal moisture from the skin like cotton articles tend to.
- Avoid hot baths and showers at all cost. Hot water strips what little oils there are on the skin. Use warm water in baths and showers.
- Change to mild soap and avoid over-washing. Soap is an emulsifier that removes oils on the skin. The more often skin is scrubbed with soap, the more oil is removed, ultimately resulting in dryer skin.
- Use a moisturizer that is oil based as opposed to water-based. The oil will form a protective barrier that helps to retain your skin’s natural moisture. Make sure you look for a ‘non-clogging’ oil that is appropriate for use on your face; avocado, primrose and mineral oils are usually a good option.
Ways we can help
Escape Day Spa offers several services that will help get rid of the itch and irritation.
- Hydrating Facials. Facials can help counteract the effects of winter by increasing circulation and stimulating your skin, which helps keep it moist and stop dehydration. Remember what we said about CRF? Exfoliation is the key to getting rid of the dry top layer and exposing your new skin. Following exfoliation, we nourish that younger skin with nutritious oils and enrich that layer while boosting collagen production, therefore preventing premature aging…and who doesn’t like that?
- DermaSweep. We have several infusions to choose from. Our Hyaluronic Acid Infusion holds 1,000 times its weight in moisture and is perfect for dehydrated skin.
- Body Treatments. While we have many that will benefit your skin, our Mud treatments are often used to treat skin problems like eczema and psoriasis. Perfect for winter skin!
We want to help you escape dry itchy skin. Contact us to set up an appointment and we will help you choose what treatment is best for you.