Around this time of year, taking a long hot bath or a lingering warm shower can seem like a perfect way to beat any winter woes, but this cold weather cure can have its down side — make that its itchy and scratchy side. Following the same skin care routine year-round may not work so well when the humidity drops. Without a change in your skin care, dry air can make fine lines and wrinkles more noticeable. Dry skin can itch, flake, crack and even bleed. To help prevent dry skin, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you limit your baths and showers to 5 to 10 minutes. It can help add moisture to the skin. Longer baths or showers will often leave your skin less hydrated than before you started. Don’t bathe more than once a day and wash with a gentle, fragrance-free cleanser. Even how you dry off can affect your skin. If you want to avoid dry skin, practice a light pat, not a rub down, with a soft towel. Before your skin is completely dry, slather on some moisturizer. Choose creams, ointments or oils instead of lotions, which contain alcohol. Moisturize a few times a day. It can help keep your skin from drying out.What kind of moisturizer should you choose? Ointments and creams are more effective and less irritating than lotions. Look for a cream or ointment that contains an oil, such as olive oil or jojoba oil. Shea butter also works well. Other ingredients that help to soothe dry skin include lactic acid, urea, hyaluronic acid, dimethicone, glycerin, lanolin, mineral oil and petrolatum.So what else can you do to winterproof your skin?
Dry skin also can be a sign of a skin condition that needs treatment. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.What are your go-to solutions for winter-weathered skin?
Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; Harvard Health
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