Cold weather can dry out your skin, leaving it itchy and uncomfortable

All about bodycare > Winter care > Cold weather can dry out your skin, leaving it itchy and uncomfortable

The obvious challenge with dry, itchy skin is the physical discomfort and the dilemma with scratching, which will only further irritate skin and lead to an even more intense itch. Cracks and abrasions caused by scratching can allow bacteria and allergens to penetrate the skin, leaving your skin more vulnerable to infection. There are steps you can take to help improve the health of your skin, soothe the itch so you can avoid the cycle of scratching, and get your itchy skin back under control.

Preventing is the key

The best way to care for dry, itchy skin is to prevent it from ever occurring.

- Avoid long baths and showers, which can dry out your skin.

- Keep water lukewarm since hot water can actually intensify itchy skin.

- Avoid harsh soaps, and instead use gentle, soap-free and fragrance-free face and body washes.

- After your bath or shower, while skin is still damp, apply a gentle, effective daily moisturizer to keep moisture in and irritants out.

- Keep the temperature inside your home (especially inside the bedroom) on the cool side, since overheating can make dry, itchy skin even worse.

More tips

Avoid water-based moisturizers which literally can freeze on the skin!

While it isn't necessary to recreate the atmosphere of a Costa Rican rain forest, invest in a home vaporizer for the bedroom at the very least ( a small one for the office would also be a great idea). In the winter, our mucus membranes and nasal passages get crispy from breathing superdry air, so humidifiers can help the inside as well as the outside. Garner comments "Even a small indoor fountain, which may be a more pleasant-looking alternative, will introduce some needed moisture into the air."

Alcohol is bad news, both inside and out. Alcohol applied topically to the skin is drying (although it may trigger sebum overproduction, which causes problems of its own). Remember that cocktails deplete the skin's natural moisture. Drink water - though the experts now disagree about how much: some say that eight glasses a day flush away too many nutrients - and orange juice with pulp.


Photo: Zero Industry S.r.l. Italy

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