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What is dry skin?

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Dry skin is dull, rough, scaly, and itchy, with almost invisible pores. It's usually caused by an abnormal shedding of cells from the skin's outer layer. In normal situations, lubrication from the body's natural oils helps stop water loss from the skin.

If you have dry skin, wash your face daily with a mild cleanser. This will keep your skin from becoming drier. Moisturize with a fragrance- and alcohol-free lotion after washing.

Also, limit very hot showers, high temperatures, and low humidity, which rob your skin of moisture. Even using soap and excessive washing or scrubbing of the skin increases dryness. Many people have drier skin during the winter months, when humidity is low and heaters force hot, dry air into enclosed rooms.

If your skin is very dry, take a warm bath for about 20 minutes. Avoid using soap or other drying products. When you get out of the tub, barely pat your body dry, then rub mineral oil (found at most supermarkets and drugstores) or a non-perfumed, non-alcohol lotion all over your skin. Pat your skin dry again. The oil or lotion helps to lock in healing moisture, keeping skin supple and soft.

From: Skin Care Tips for Teens WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES: 

Beyond Botox, Ben and Howard Kominsky, 2006. 

Patientsuptodate.com web site: "Patient Information: Acne." 

American Academy of Dermatology website: "How Dry I Am" and "Face Facts." 

SkinCarePhysicians.com web site: "AcneNet: 7 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Acne Treatment."

News release, FDA.

Reviewed by Debra Jaliman on August 27, 2019

SOURCES: 

Beyond Botox, Ben and Howard Kominsky, 2006. 

Patientsuptodate.com web site: "Patient Information: Acne." 

American Academy of Dermatology website: "How Dry I Am" and "Face Facts." 

SkinCarePhysicians.com web site: "AcneNet: 7 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Acne Treatment."

News release, FDA.

Reviewed by Debra Jaliman on August 27, 2019

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