Dry Skin: The Ultimate Skincare Routine
Roughness, dullness, tightness and cracks can all be signs of dry skin. To overcome these problems, you need a pampering routine that will feed your complexion with the oils and moisture it needs. Find out how to get a soft, supple skin below…
20 per cent of women say they have dry skin. It feels tight after showering or cleansing, reacts to changes in temperature, and is often sensitive and itchy. On the surface, the skin is cracked and becomes flaky and red. The complexion is dull and lacks elasticity. Your skin's dying of thirst! Your complexion is getting duller by the day and your skin lacks suppleness. Your legs and arms are as leathery as your favourite shoes. In other words, your skin feels uncomfortable. The solution for soft skin? Moisturise and nourish!
It's craving a beauty routine that meets its needs. Soften it up by pampering it with nourishing, moisturising treatments that contain vegetable oils or body butters. And calm irritated skin and red patches with soothing active ingredients such as aloe vera. Make sure you deeply nourish your skin to leave it feeling comfy and hydrated.
Even though dry skin tends to be sensitive, it still loves a good face scrub or mask. Scrubs will get rid of dead cells that suffocate skin, whilst masks will bathe it in moisturising goodness. Leaving you with supple, dewy, baby soft skin.
The causes of dry skin? External aggressors such as pollution, sun exposure, heating, tobacco, plus, using harsh cosmetic products, particularly anti-acne products, which are inappropriate for the skin’s specific needs.
1. REMOVE MAKEUP AND CLEANSE GENTLY
Tap water contains a lot of calcium, which damages and dries out the skin. Cleanse your skin both morning and evening with gentle products. In the morning, use a hydrating cleansing water. In the evening, use a nourishing cream cleanser to remove all traces of make-up and boost the skin’s moisture levels. To remove make-up and cleanse gently, choose a cleansing milk or cleansing oil. Cleansing milk is gentle and hydrating, whereas cleansing oil has lipids that help reconstruct the skin barrier. Our must-have skincare product? A cleansing oil that emulsifies on the skin.
2. EXFOLIATE VERY GENTLY
Dry skin flakes more easily than other skin types. So it also needs exfoliating. Once a week, make your own facial scrub from ground almonds and honey. The ground almonds exfoliate the skin very gently. The honey nourishes and rehydrates. Dead skin cells are removed, leaving your complexion feeling ultra soft.
3. SOOTHE IRRITATED SKIN
Sometimes, as well as being dry, your skin becomes irritated. After cleansing, put soothing ingredients on your face – thermal water, floral water, aloe vera are all great. If your skin is in crisis, use cold cream.
4. NOURISH AND HYDRATE YOUR SKIN
Dry skin cannot retain water on its surface. Your skin needs to nourished, hydrated and filled out. Opt for creams rich in hydrating active ingredients to soothe, nourish and repair the skin. Hyaluronic acid, lactic acid and sugars are your best friends for hydrating your skin. For a more natural composition, go for aloe vera gel. To nourish your skin, go for vegetable oils: sweet almond, argan, apricot, jojoba… play around until you find the perfect one for you. A hydrating serum followed by a moisturising cream is invaluable for dry skin.
5. USE A FACE MASK
Use a nourishing face mask intended for dry skin at least once a week. Or try a homemade version: half an avocado and a mashed banana, mixed with two tablespoons of honey. Avocado contains vitamins A, B and E, which hydrate the skin, while honey and banana soothe and nourish.
6. EYE CONTOUR SKINCARE
To prevent fine lines, apply a special eye product morning and evening to the area above the cheekbones. Enriched with the same active ingredients as the previous skincare products, it protects the ultra delicate and sensitive skin in this area and gives long-lasting hydration. You will look younger and fresher in the morning!
LAYERING HYDRATION TO BEAT SEASONAL DRY SKIN
We’re used to layering our clothes in the UK – now do the same with skincare.
With the indecisive UK weather, it’s little wonder that skin can feel dehydrated and dry around this time of year. The key to getting the boing back lies in the same rule that we apply to dressing around now: layers.
THE GOLDEN RULE OF LAYERING SKINCARE
To get the maximum hydration out of your products, you have to apply them in the right order. As a general rule, start with the most fluid, watery moisturiser and move through to the thickest, most emollient. If your skin is generally on the dehydrated side but the surface is oily, use thinner fluids such as emulsions and serums. If you have dehydrated and dry skin, use all the steps from a hydrating spritz and serum through to a comforting, blankety layer of moisturiser.
LEAVE TIME BETWEEN PRODUCTS
Skin needs a little time to absorb the ingredients you put on it, so it’s best to leave a few minutes between applying layers to give them chance to penetrate. This is especially important if you’re finishing off with an SPF moisturiser in the morning: you don’t want the protection to slip all over the place on top of your serum, as it could leave some parts uncovered. If you’re short of time, do something in between each step such as brushing your teeth or getting dressed.
HOW YOU APPLY IS AS IMPORTANT AS WHAT YOU APPLY
Once you’ve found that brilliant serum, give it the maximum chance of working by taking time to press it into your skin, focusing especially on gently tapping around the eyes to also help drain excess fluid and encourage the absorption of actives. When you’re applying your final moisturiser or SPF, you want to smooth it on in a thin layer without rubbing so that it sits evenly across your skin.
Article supplied & written by Marie Claire, part of Hearst Communications, Inc.