PUT AN END TO DRY SKIN
Learn how to care for and comfort dry skin.
Dry skin doesn’t discriminate. No matter your skin type, the time may come when your skin feels tight, flaky, itchy, irritated and dry. These feelings may be a result of your environment, the time of year or whether you’re properly hydrated. No matter the reason – or season – learn how to put an end to dry skin with a skin care expert interview featuring Geetha Kalahasti, Senior Scientist of Upstream Research, Clinical Research and Scientific Credentialing at Mary Kay.
What causes dry skin on the face and body?
There are many factors that can cause dry skin on the face and body. Internal factors like age, fewer natural oils in the skin and decreased renewal of skin cells, in addition to external factors like hot or cold weather, low humidity, and overwashing can result in drier skin. That’s why a strong skin barrier is critical. The skin barrier serves to maintain skin’s water loss, so when the barrier is compromised, its ability to retain hydration is also impaired. This means skin can’t perform at its best and may noticeably go from feeling silky, smooth and moisturized to dry, scaly and flaky.
Skin conditions like eczema are also key causes of dry skin. But if you suspect you have a skin condition, it's best to consult a board-certified dermatologist.
What are key indicators of dry skin on the face and body?
Dry skin can present itself in different ways. Dry facial skin can appear as scaly white skin patches or ashy areas. It usually shows up on the cheeks, under the jaw and around the eyes. The lips often become dry, too, especially in winter. On the body, dry, dehydrated skin most often first occurs on the feet and shins. These areas have fewer sebaceous glands and are usually more exposed to the environment, although dry skin patches can certainly occur anywhere on the body.
How can I relieve dry, flaky skin on the face and body?
To relieve dry, flaky skin, you need to replenish the skin’s moisture. This can be done with emollients and humectants – key ingredients found in lotions and moisturizers!
Moisturizers are the most used topical product for maintaining skin hydration and can provide both short- and long-term benefits. And when formulated with active ingredients, moisturizers can help restore skin health.
Can all skin types experience dry skin?
Yes, all skin types can experience dryness! As such, skin hydration is critical for everyone, so whether you have dry, normal, combination or oily skin, using a moisturizer along with a cleanser should be part of your daily skin care routine.
Why is skin hydration so important?
Maintaining appropriate skin hydration is essential for skin’s appearance, softness, and the reinforcement of the skin moisture barrier to protect against environmental factors and skin conditions. Additionally, lack of hydration can contribute to other things like the premature development and appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
How can I prevent dry skin on the face and body?
Practices like overwashing and exfoliation or long, hot showers can all lead to dry skin. Avoiding these things and applying a moisturizer followed by SPF
every day can help prevent dry skin from developing. However, due to external factors like wintertime and living in an extremely cold, dry place, dry – and even extra-dry – skin can sometimes be unavoidable. That’s when extra hydration and care is needed.
When the skin continues to lose water and cannot heal itself, it can become extremely dry. Extra-dry skin is an indication that the skin moisture barrier is compromised, and its ability to retain hydration is impaired. These changes result in dry skin that can feel tight, irritated and itchy. It may also appear parched and ashen.
For extremely dry skin, especially on the hands, elbows and feet, using a rich moisturizer like Mary Kay® Extra Emollient Night Cream can help replenish and maintain the natural moisture of the skin. It’s formulated with petrolatum – an emollient that forms a protective barrier to minimize moisture evaporation and helps to maintain the soft, smooth and supple appearance of the skin.
Are there any products you recommend for dry skin based on skin type?
For dry skin types, I recommend combatting dryness with emollients to prevent water loss and humectants to trap and replenish skin’s water content. Of all the humectants, glycerin is the most well-known and is considered the tried-and-true skin care ingredient for moisturization. It’s a moisturizer and hydrator that helps condition and smooth the skin by adding, attracting or retaining moisture. Mary Kay® Intense Moisturizing Cream
is formulated with glycerin and algae extract – a skin-conditioning agent and humectant that moisturizes and helps condition skin. This luxurious face cream formulated specifically for dry skin leaves skin looking immediately more radiant and feeling unbelievably soft and smooth.
Excessive production of sebum leads to combination-to-oily skin. Natural oils on the skin’s surface are critical for retaining moisture within skin. However, excess oil can make skin look shiny and greasy – especially in the T-zone. Therefore, it is essential to balance oily skin by reducing oil production while also providing additional hydration. Mary Kay® Oil-Free Hydrating Gel
is formulated with dimethicone – a conditioner and emollient that helps maintain the soft, smooth and supple appearance of the skin – plus green tea extract – a soothing agent known for its calming and soothing properties. The nongreasy, non-comedogenic gel texture absorbs quickly, leaving skin feeling cool and refreshed – perfect if you have oily skin.
For added moisture no matter your skin type, consider incorporating a supplemental hydration product into your skin care routine like TimeWise® Moisture Renewing Gel Mask.
If you classify your skin as combination-to-oily, consider a cleanser and moisturizer formulated specifically for your skin like Mary Kay® Oil-Free Hydrating Gel.
If you’re experiencing dry skin and would like to learn more about skin care products designed to make you feel confident, contact or connect with a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant!
As your personal skin care advisor, she can help you love your skin and try the latest makeup looks with one-on-one consultations and small gatherings — virtually or in person!
Senior Scientist of Upstream Research, Clinical Research and Scientific Credentialing at Mary Kay, has a passion for science and loves skin care. She enjoys designing spaces and spending time with her two sons and fur child – Yogi Bear. Her go to products are TimeWise® Moisture Renewing Gel Mask
and Mary Kay Clinical Solutions™ Calm + Restore Facial Milk.
Molly McGonigal is a writer who is alliteration-obsessed and loves a good dress. She has combination-to-oily skin, and the cooling gel texture of Mary Kay® Oil-Free Hydrating Gel
is one of her favorite Mary Kay®