The arrival of winter season brings a lot of joy and tradition. But one thing you may not love about this time of year is the effect that it leaves on your body. The combination of indoor heating and cold weather can be a worrisome factor on your skin. You may face an itchy skin in winter that makes you uncomfortable.
Talking about summer, high temperature makes your skin produce more oil which leaves ypu feel more nourished and moisturised. As the outdoor temperature goes on decreasing, your skin moisture too decreases. So, when you turn your heat on inside, you are exposed to even more dryness, which will leave your skin irritated.
While you cannot necessarily change the temperature outside, you can get some simple-yet-effective steps to protect your skin. So, here are some ways to protect your dry itchy winter skin.
1. Moisturizing it more frequently:
In the winter season, it is necessarily important to stay moisturised. But, no simple lotion will work this time. Also, if you do not have a full-blown skincare routine, you should apply a fragrance-free petroleum jelly, right after bathing. Moisturising your skin when it is wet, traps the moisture on the surface of your skin, which can make your skin softer. And because you may be washing your hands more frequently than normal, make a habit of applying a thick moisturizer to your hands.
2. Turning the thermostat down:
If it’s cold outside, you will turn on the thermostat. But before you turn it up too high, your central heat can make your home even dryer. So, to maintain healthy skin, you need to keep your home temperature between 67°F to 72°F.
3. Using a humidifier:
In the winter season, your air is less humid. This causes indoor humidity where levels drop. So, if your furnace has a built-in humidifier, then you would want to tweak the settings in the winter season. So, aim for about 30-50% humidity, and then lower it to see condensation accumulating.
A humidifier can help you protect your skin from the effects of cold breeze. So, if you have an ultrasonic humidifier, make sure that you maintain it to avoid bacteria. Changing your humidifier water everyday, and cleaning the reservoir once a week is crucial.
4. Skipping the hot shower:
Sometimes, a hot shower might sound appealing in the winter season, but hot water can cause skin dryness. Itchy skin in the winter season can lead to skin irritation and pouring hot water over it can strip your skin’s natural oils. So, after you get out of the shower, make sure that you pat dry yourself. Rubbing too hard with a towel can cause skin irritation. So, apply lubricating moisturiser while your skin is slightly wet.
5. Choosing Mild Soaps:
It is best to use less soap in winters, but when you do wash up, be sure about the products which you use. Detergent-based soaps, like regular bar soaps, have synthetic fragrances which can cause skin irritation. So, aim for a gentle cleanser which is labelled as ‘fragrance-free’.
6. Trying An Occlusive:
Choosing thick moisturizers in winters can do a great job. But, if you find that your moisturiser is not doing justice, then use an occlusive. It is an ingredient which prevents future moisture loss by locking the moisturizer into your skin and creating a physical barrier which will protect your skin from itchiness. Occlusive like cocoa butter, castor oil, shea butter and jojoba oil are very helpful. You can also use petroleum based jelly which keeps your skin smooth.
7. Trying An Occlusions:
Going easy with exfoliates and scrubs. Exfoliation helps in removing dead skin cells and makes your skin look more smooth and vibrant. But sometimes you might over exfoliate your skin or you might use wrong products too.
So, if your skin looks super dry or flaky, make sure that you use gentle chemical exfoliator instead of a physical scrub. Harsher scrubs with large particles can break down your skin’s moisture and can cause skin damage. Also, if your skin is cracked, irritated or raw, it is best to avoid exfoliation until your skin is healed.
8. Drinking more water:
Staying hydrated is an important part of your health. It can also keep your skin soft and healthy. Dehydration can result in eliminating your skin’s glow and making your skin more vulnerable to dryness on your body and face. While some people suggest drinking half your weight in ounces of water everyday is the best practice to prevent your itchy skin. Be mindful of how much alcohol you consume because it results in dehydration.
9. Wear Non Irritating Fabrics:
A good rule when dealing with any skin issue is to avoid wearing harsh fabrics. And dry skin is not an exception. So, if the skin on your body is extra dry, try wearing loose and comfortable fabrics which will reduce the risk of extra physical irritation. Also, avoid washing your clothes in regular detergents. Look for detergents which are formulated for super sensitive skin. This will prevent your dry itchy skin in winters.
10. Wearing Gloves:
Gloves are the physical barriers against environmental agents that can dry out the skin on your hands. So, protect your hands, wear warm gloves when stepping out into the cold and use a pair of silicon gloves to prevent your skin from skin irritation. Limiting the dry air and hot water which touches your skin can keep your hands smooth and will also hydrate them.
When you should visit your doctor:
While many home remedies can help prevent your itchy skin in winter, but it is also crucial to reach out to a dermatologist if your skin symptoms become worse. So, make sure that you visit your doctor soon.
1.) How to treat dry itchy winter skin?
1.) Apply a thick moisturizer
2.) Using an ointment or cream
3.) Wearing your lip balm always
4.) Using only gentle skin care products.
2.) Why does my skin get itchy in the winter?
Cold, dry air sucks the moisture content from your skin, which leaves your skin raw and depleted. Also, winter air lacks humidity; hence, it causes itchiness.
3.) How to keep your skin glowing in winter?
1.) By moisturizing your skin.
2.) Using a humidifier
3.) Not taking long and hot showers.
4.) What did dry skin look like?
Dry skin makes the skin look scaly, flaky, and itchy. This is a common condition that affects all age groups.