Dry skin is a common complaint during the fall and winter months.
The good news is, you don’t have to suffer all season long.
Today, we are going to dive into the three reasons why your skin is feeling dry and what you can do to help your skin feel more hydrated this fall and winter.
Let’s start by defining dry skin.
What is Dry Skin?
Dry skin means the skin is lacking water and feels tight.
We believe that if we drink enough water, our skin won’t feel dry. That is not the case. Dry skin happens inside the actual skin cell itself.
Drinking water is good for our bodies because it keeps our bodies hydrated, flushes toxins, lubricates our joints, and regulates our body temperature.
Drinking water alone is NOT the solution for dry skin.
When the cell itself is lacking water, our skin becomes dry. Dry skin is also a skin condition that many are born with, due to minimal oil production. Typically, fair-skinned people are the ones who tend to default to dry skin. Due to their fair complexion, they don’t produce a lot of oil and typically have smaller pore sizes and fewer blackheads.
However, they suffer from dry skin their entire life and tend to show signs of aging faster than oily skin types.
Now let’s talk about the reasons why your skin is dry:
Reason #1: You’re Dehydrating your Skin
Another skin condition to point out is Dehydrated skin, which is something we create due to improper product use.
Dehydrated skin is created by using the wrong products or not properly caring for your skin.
Oily skin types tend to dehydrate their skin because many of us grew up believing that oil is bad and we must do whatever it takes to get rid of the oil!
Trust me, I grew up with Noxema pads and Sea Breeze toners so I remember constantly stripping the oil away.
We have now come to learn that oil is actually good for our skin. Oil is how our body detoxes by removing dirt and toxins from the body.
Stripping oil away not only removes oil but causes our skin to become dry. We are drawing water out of the skin, rather than keeping the water inside the skin.
This is why your skin may feel dry, but gets oily by the end of the day. For example, you may feel like you have to wipe off the oil by the afternoon because your forehead is shiny!
What is happening here?
Our oil glands keep our skin lubricated and aid in hydration for our skin cells. When you strip away the oil, not only does it remove all oil, but you’re drawing water out of the skin. This forces the oil glands to produce even more oil to compensate for the lack of both oil and water in the skin.
Our job is to hydrate the skin cells while maintaining oil production.
When you use the right balance of skincare products at home, your oil production will normalize over the course of 4-6 weeks, which is a full skin cycle. You will notice that your skin will feel less dry and less oily, which means that the products are working!
Trying to figure it out on your own won’t help, because the majority of over-the-counter products or Dermatologist-recommended products are designed to keep your skin dry.
This brings us to our next point…
Reason #2: You’re Using the Wrong Skincare Products
I mentioned above that seeing an esthetician is essential to a healthy skincare routine. Without guidance, you are constantly searching for skincare products to help, but never seem to find any relief!
Most consumers select products based on what they think their skin needs, and we end up with the wrong products for our skin. Listening to friends, influencers, or celebrities on social media with no actual skin training leads to the use of improper skincare products.
Here are a few examples of improper skincare products:
- Gel-based cleansers
- Hyaluronic acid in your moisturizer
- Exfoliating cleansers
- Scrubs or Peel pads
I am not a fan of gel-based cleansers, especially for anyone over age 30! Typically the ingredients that make up those cleansers strip the skin of oil, causing the skin to become dehydrated. If your skin is already dry, you are making your skin worse.
I will be honest, it can take a bit to get used to, because your skin has been used to a gel cleanser for so many years, but once you make the shift, you won’t believe that you were using something so harsh for so many years! (trust me, clients tell me this all the time!)
Hyaluronic Acid in your Moisturizer
I LOVE hyaluronic acid, however, most consumers use hyaluronic incorrectly. Hyaluronic acid acts like a magnet, attracting water into the skin cells, keeping the skin moisturized, and preventing dry skin.
Think of dry skin cells like a raisin. When you have hyaluronic acid in the skin, the hyaluronic acid attracts water into the cell, which then plumps up like a grape. If over-the-counter products actually did this, we would all have hydrated skin!
Most over-the-counter manufacturers put hyaluronic acid in serums or moisturizers.
Two reasons why this is a problem:
- Hyaluronic acid is a large molecule, which means that it will NOT penetrate into the skin. The goal of a serum is to get product INTO the skin cells to make a change in the skin. If you’re using a large molecule that doesn’t penetrate, you’re wasting your money!
- When hyaluronic acid sits on top of the skin, it pulls water OUT of the skin, thus creating dehydration. As I mentioned above, hyaluronic acid acts like a magnet, so if it’s on top of the skin, it’s turning your skin cells into a raisin, not a grape.
When you work with an esthetician, we use a high-quality professional hyaluronic acid that is encapsulated so the hyaluronic acid gets into the skin.
There is NO reason to exfoliate your skin daily, let alone twice daily as indicated on your cleanser. Most consumers tend to overexfoliate their skin because we believe that the more we exfoliate, the healthier our skin.
Our skin is the largest organ of our body, which means our organs know how to repair & heal themselves. For some reason, we feel the need to attack this beautiful organ. Our skin naturally exfoliates and repairs itself. Our job is to find the right tools, aka products, to support our skin and keep it functioning properly.
Exfoliation only needs to be done once a week!
Daily exfoliation creates dry, dehydrated, or sensitive skin. If you’re using an exfoliating cleanser, it’s time to switch to either a cream-based or oil-based cleanser and use a weekly exfoliation product.
Scrubs or Peel pads
Scrubs and peel pads fall into the same category over over-exfoliation, however, scrubs or peel pads create damage to the skin and CAUSE sensitive or dehydrated skin. Scrubs create microscopic tears in the skin, causing water to evaporate, leaving the skin dry.
Have you ever wondered why your skin feels dry after putting on moisturizer? It’s because the skin cell itself is either damaged or you’re using products that strip the skin, removing oil and water.
Peel pads use a chemical exfoliant, such as glycolic or lactic acid, to force the skin cells to exfoliate. Again, this creates damage to the skin and strips the skin’s barrier.
Think about a brand-new building with a brick wall. The bricks are perfect and the mortar is even, holding everything together. This is what healthy skin should look like.
Now, think about an old building where the bricks aren’t perfectly rectangular and the mortar is crumbly. When we over-exfoliate or use chemical exfoliants, this is what happens to our skin.
Now that you are aware of some of what may be causing your dry skin, it’s time to shift into finding a skincare routine that works. Booking an appointment to get a facial, will help you achieve healthy skin because estheticians understand skin and how products work. We can create a customized home care routine to keep your skin moisturized and healthy this winter.
Speaking of winter…
Reason #3: Tis the Season: Fall & Winter = Dry Skin
It’s that time of year when the temperature drops and the heat kicks on in our homes, causing the air to become dry.
The interesting thing is most consumers don’t change their skincare products from season to season. We are creatures of habit and use what we think will work, even though it doesn’t.
At Skin Deep Esthetics, we are constantly checking in with our clients and shifting their skincare products to match each season of the year and season of life.
What can you do during colder months to keep your skin moisturized?
- Keep a humidifier in your bedroom when you sleep – this is important because we need moisture in the air, especially when we sleep. Moisture keeps our nasal passage lubricated and our skin hydrated. The heat in our house draws water out of the skin, which is why we wake up feeling dry.
- Swap out your skincare products – start to use a cream-based or oil-based cleanser, add in a high-quality, professional hyaluronic acid serum, and switch to a heavier moisturizer. Never forget the SPF, especially in the winter!
- Get monthly facials to help increase moisture to your skin and keep your skin healthy this winter.
Any questions or comments, please share them below.
See you next week