Dry and flaky skin is a common complaint in the winter time. Cold, dry winter air sucks the life out of silky, smooth skin. Other factors that contribute to dry skin include aging, nutritional deficiencies, and a genetic predisposition.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for dry skin
1. Olive Oil
Olive oil contains many antioxidants and healthy fatty acids that are good for your skin. It can soothe and condition dry skin all over your body.
- Dab a thin layer of extra virgin olive oil under your regular moisturizer.
- About a half an hour before taking a shower, rub some olive oil on your hands, legs and other areas with dry skin and massage lightly. Take a shower and then apply a light moisturizer.
- Mix equal amounts of olive oil and fine brown sugar. Rub this homemade scrub on your dry skin using light, circular motions for a few minutes. Take a shower and then apply a light moisturizer.
2. Milk Cream
The lactic acid present in milk cream helps exfoliate dry skin. The soothing nature of milk cream also helps preserve the skin’s delicate pH levels. Milk cream is also an excellent moisturizer.
- Mix a few drops of lemon juice, one teaspoon of milk and two teaspoons of milk cream. Rub it on your hands and legs. Leave it on for a while before you take a shower. Do this once daily.
- Add enough milk cream to three to four tablespoons of gram flour to make a thick paste. Apply the paste on your face, hands and legs. Leave it on for 15 minutes and then rinse it off with lukewarm water. Do this once daily.
Milk has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties that greatly help get rid of dry and itchy skin. Plus, the lactic acid in milk exfoliates dead skin cells and increases the skin’s ability to retain moisture. Also, it helps lighten your complexion.
- Soak a washcloth in cold milk and put the cloth on your dry skin for five to seven minutes. Gently wash off the milk with another cloth soaked in lukewarm water. This way this natural moisturizer will remain on your skin. Do this every other day.
- Add a few drops of rose water and lemon juice to four tablespoons of milk. Rub this solution all over your body. Leave it on for 10 minutes and wash your body with cold water. Follow this remedy twice daily.
Honey is considered one of the best natural moisturizers loaded with antioxidant, antimicrobial, and humectant properties. Thus, it helps lock in moisture to make your skin extra soft and smooth. Plus, honey has many essential vitamins and minerals that help improve your skin’s health.
- Before taking a bath or shower, rub honey all over your body and leave it on for five to 10 minutes. Repeat daily to enjoy well-moisturized skin.
- Measure out equal parts of unprocessed honey, beeswax, and olive oil. Melt the beeswax in a small pan over low heat. Remove it from the heat and mix in the honey and then the olive oil. Apply this mixture all over your body and leave it on for 10 minutes. Then take a shower. Repeat daily or every other day.
Yogurt is an excellent skin-hydrating agent. Plus, its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties help soothe dry and itchy skin. Also, its lactic acid content helps get rid of any germs or bacteria that may cause dryness or itchiness.
- Apply fresh yogurt on your hands, face and legs and gently massaging it into your skin. Leave it on for 10 minutes and then take a bath or shower. The mild exfoliating action of yogurt will remove dry skin and leave your skin refreshed. Do this once daily.
- Mix one-half cup of yogurt and three tablespoons of mashed papaya. Stir in a few drops each of honey and lemon juice. Apply it on your skin and leave it on for 10 minutes before washing it off with cold water. Do this once a week.
6. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is really good for treating dry skin. It has a good amount of fatty acids that make up for any loss of moisture from the skin.
- Liberally apply warm coconut oil all over your body before going to sleep. Wash it off in the morning. Do this daily to make your skin soft and smooth.
- Apply coconut oil on your dry skin after you take a bath or shower. When the skin is warm and supple from your bath, coconut oil is more readily absorbed. Do this daily.
Avocado is packed with fatty acids, vitamins and antioxidants that help improve skin from the inside. The high vitamin A content also helps in skin maintenance and repair to restore smooth and silky skin.
- Mash the pulp of an avocado into a smooth paste. Rub the paste all over your dry skin. Let it sit on your skin for 10 to 15 minutes and rinse it off with cold water. Repeat the process once daily.
- Mash one-half of a ripe avocado and stir in one-half cup of honey. Apply the mixture on your dry skin and let it sit for 15 minutes before rinsing it off. Apply this hydrating face mask once or twice a week. Do not use more often than that.
- You can also drink a glass of an avocado smoothie daily to increase your intake of healthy fats that will help keep your skin hydrated and moisturized.
You can also use oatmeal to moisturize and relieve dry skin. The high protein content in oatmeal leaves a protective barrier on the skin, which prevents water loss and helps maintain moisture. Plus, it has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that are good for the overall health of your skin.
- Pour one cup of plain oatmeal into your bathtub filled with warm water. Add a few drops of lavender oil. Soak in the bath water for 15 to 30 minutes. Enjoy this soothing bath once a week.
- Make a face mask by mixing one mashed ripe banana with one cup of ground oatmeal and then adding a little bit of lukewarm milk. Apply this smooth mixture on your dry skin and leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water. Use this face mask once a week.
9. Almond Oil
Almond oil is an excellent source of vitamin E and, hence, is considered the best emollient and lubricator for dry skin. Also, its antioxidant property is good for your skin’s overall health. In addition, because this oil is non-greasy, it is easily absorbed in the skin.
- Gently warm up some pure almond oil. Massage your body lightly with the warm oil a half an hour before taking a shower. After your shower when your skin is still damp, apply some light moisturizer. Do this once daily.
- Drink a glass of warm milk mixed with one teaspoon of almond oil before going to bed. Repeat every night to enjoy healthier skin as well as sound sleep.
Note : Those who are allergic to almonds must not use the almond oil remedies.
10. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera has soothing, antiseptic and antifungal properties that can help combat dry, irritated skin and prevent flaking. This simple remedy will moisturize your skin and form a protective layer that will keep your skin free from any kind of impurities.
- Cut open a fresh aloe vera leaf and squeeze the gel out of it.
- Apply the gel on your dry skin. Let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Do this twice daily.
Try these easy remedies to relieve the discomfort that comes from dry skin and restore its natural soft, smooth texture.
Diet for Dry Skin
Although most of the causes for dry skin are external, a few dietary changes can go a long way in keeping your skin hydrated, moist and healthy. In case you suffer from dry skin on a constant basis, you need to consult a doctor. However, while trying out other dry skin remedies, you could improve your skin health by increasing the consumption of certain foods in your diet, such as:
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids: This nutrient is found in foods like nuts, avocado, tuna fish, salmon and flax seed
- Zinc: Foods that are high in zinc include beans, beef, crabs and oysters
- Sulfur: In order to keep your skin smooth, you need to increase your intake of eggs, onions and garlics
- Vitamin C: This vitamin encourages the skin to absorb moisturizers that have been applied on to the body and can be found in kiwis, papaya and citrus fruits, such as oranges, lemons and grapefruit.
A diet for dry skin is incomplete without an adequate intake of water or other liquids. It is important for you to drink at least 8 glasses of water in a day. In addition to water, you could also consume fresh fruit juices, coconut water and herbal teas. However, alcohol and caffeinated beverages (coffee, sodas & hot chocolate) should be strictly avoided as they have diuretic properties and will result in further dehydration and loss of moisture.