We all long for soft and radiant skin and thus buy good-quality skincare products that help us look our stunning best. But sometimes, certain conditions like acne, dullness, dryness, or sunburns can spoil the party for us. Itchy skin is one of the worst nightmares among all these skin issues. It can be quite unpleasant and a nuisance to your day-to-day activities, especially during the winters.
It may also be worthwhile to consider a special case. Some people often complain that their skin starts to trouble them more during certain times of the day like when they wake up or go to sleep at night. These issues may be caused due to allergic reactions to any trigger like pollutants or dust particles. It is advisable to consult a doctor or skincare expert in such situations to resolve the issue at the earliest.
Our skin is a natural reflection of how smoothly our body’s internal biological and biochemical processes are operating. From acne breakouts during teenage years to stress in the later stages, we undergo many physical and mental changes. This also changes our skin’s texture depending on what’s happening inside us. Such signs may be followed by wrinkles, fine lines, crow’s feet, and dark spots.
Our skin, being the largest organ, is also a natural multitasker. It is the first line of defense between the body and the external environment. It also prepares the skin against harmful bacteria, viruses, pollutants, and prolonged UV exposure. Skin cells thus help regulate fluid balance, body temperature, and moisture loss too.
There are many other factors that can also impact our skincare regimen’s health. For example, genetics, hormonal imbalances, aging, and health conditions can dehydrate the skin cells and may make the skin look dull. These factors may not be under our control but may still be addressed with a proper skin care regimen.
Factors such as bad eating habits, dehydration, smoking, not exercising, and a lack of sleep can affect the skin’s defense mechanism. We can start working on these healthy regimens and improve natural functioning to get a radiant glow. But first, let us understand what itchy skin is and how we may create a dry or itchy skincare routine.
What is Itchy Skin?
Itchiness is an uncomfortable situation that leaves you constantly scratching yourself, often up to the extent of bleeding or injuring yourself. It isn’t always related to dryness but is still a major cause. It is also more commonly experienced during the drier summer or winter seasons when a massive difference in indoor and outdoor temperatures can cause the skin’s moisture levels to fluctuate.
This may even add to tightness or redness, especially if left untreated. Some people also describe it as a feeling in which something is crawling on their skin. Medically called pruritus, it may last for more than six weeks and become chronic. The chronic itch can be unpleasant, so it’s important to address it immediately. Itchy skin may become worse with allergies or any medications that one is allergic to.
The only way to treat various signs of itchiness on the skin is to treat the source of the irritation. The latter may include dry skin, poor-quality beauty products, irritating fabric, bedbugs, or allergens.
Here’s how it occurs. The summer’s scorching heat makes the skin produce more oil, which is why the skin does not feel dry at this time. Even if the temperature decreases outside, the skin can remain moisturized. But when you turn the heat on in your room or home, the skin feels even drier, which is likely why you end up scratching it even more.
While there’s little you can do about the frigid temperatures, you can surely revamp your care routine for your dry skin.
Skincare routine for dry skin
Here is how you should be taking care of dry or itchy skin-
1. Use skin cleansers with low pH
A face cleanser is the first skincare product you introduce to your skin. So, you can’t use any face cleansers kept in your beauty kit. With each unique skin type comes a different cleanser specially formulated for that particular skin.
The skin’s pH runs from 4 to 6. This means the skin is slightly acidic and remains the same to function at its best. So, it is essential that if you have dryness or itchiness, the lipids in the skin are preserved, which is when the skin’s pH is less than 7.
2. Use a face toner
A toner helps the facial skin retain more moisture. You can skip using it if your facial cleanser is hydrating or nourishing enough. However, if you still want to use a face toner, you should pick one that is alcohol-free. You may also go for good-quality skincare products that contain active ingredients (like aloe vera or cucumber). They will help restore the skin’s pH levels and thus help relieve dryness or itchiness.
3. Apply a face serum
This step helps target specific skin concerns. But as we discuss dryness, we focus on picking hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and aloe vera. They help bind water moisture to the skin cells and thus strengthen the moisture barrier. It also helps reduce hyperpigmentation, acne, and wrinkles to give you a natural and radiant glow.
Shortlisting the best lotion for dry and itchy skin might take some time, but it will be well worth it. It would help seal the moisture in the deeper layers and keep the cells hydrated for a long time. A moisturizer will have humectants to attract moisture, emollients to smooth the space between skin cells, and occlusive agents to lock in the water.
We also recommend using a moisturizer to reap the benefits of face serums, thus soothing multiple signs of dryness. This is why moisturizers make an indispensable part of dry skin care regimens.
Pro tip- You might want to avoid clogging your pores after using a face moisturizer. It would be advisable to use a non-comedogenic face moisturizer or face cream.
5. Protect it from pollution and the sun’s harmful UV rays
Prolonged exposure to the sun may cause itchy red spots on the skin. Wearing SPF prevents harmful UV rays from penetrating and damaging the skin. Ideally, you should use SPF 30 when stepping out in the sun and use cotton clothing to avoid any allergic reactions on your skin.
10 Proven ways to take care of dry skin
Dry skin is not some unusually different type of skin. It is just normal skin except its cells can’t retain enough moisture and sebum to nourish themselves. This makes a person less attractive, especially during the summer and winter.
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends the following ways to prevent dry and itchy skin:
1. Take 5- to 10-minutes of a lukewarm shower to help slough dead skin cells. Excessive showering can lend you unlawful effects- such as it strips away the oily layer of the skin and drying it out.
2. Don’t be tempted to use hot water in the shower. It will result in the loss of essential oils from the skin.
3. Minimize the use of harsh cleansers or bathing soaps. Avoid fragrance, parabens, and sulfate-enriched beauty care products. Avoid extensively rubbing your skin if you’re using physical exfoliators, although you should avoid it altogether if you have dry skin.
4. Opt for a soft towel and use it gently to dry yourself.
5. It is best to apply moisturizer or face cream to trap moisture on slightly damp skin.
6. Use natural or mild skin care products on your skin as they don’t interrupt your skin’s pH and prevent any allergic reactions.
7. Never be tempted to scratch your skin.
8. Sometimes wearing clothes made from rough material can also bring in itchiness. So wear cotton clothes only. Wool may also cause some itchiness, so you should wear silk or cotton clothes underneath.
9. Avoid getting near heat sources or fireplaces, especially in winter, as it may make your skin drier.
10. Use hypoallergenic laundry detergent.
Other tips that should be worked along-
– Before you turn your thermostat, you should learn that central heat can dry your skin even more. To maintain healthy skin, keep the temperature between 67° F to 72° F (about 18° C to 22° C).
– You may use a humidifier to compensate for moisture loss during the winter season. You should opt for 30-50% humidity but may lower it if you find fog accumulating on your glass windows.
– Drinking enough water not only helps your body to function properly, but it is also good for your skin too. Dehydration can zap your skin’s glow and decrease the likeliness of dryness or itchiness.
– However, if the signs persist, it would be better to consult a skincare expert and follow the best course he may suggest for the treatment.
Itchy skin is a common skin problem that’s not usually a cause for worry. It often occurs when your skin remains dry for a long time, leaving you with constant scratching. Even though it is an unpleasant situation, the best part is you can work toward it by tapping into the dry skin care routine.
Along with this, skin care experts suggest making necessary changes to your lifestyle patterns to improve your skin’s texture. You should quit smoking or alcohol because they may make your skin dehydrated. We would also recommend following healthier lifestyle practices like practicing meditation to rise above these bad habits.
- Why is my skin so sensitive and itchy
When your skin is dry, it appears in the form of itchiness or redness. There could be many possible reasons why your skin appears dry or itchy. These include using too hot water for bathing, harsh chemicals on the skin, environmental aggressors, clothing material, a reaction to a drug, etc.
- How to get rid of itchy skin?
Moisturization is the first step to getting rid of itchiness or dryness. It helps create a protective barrier against environmental stressors. Apart from that, skin care experts also suggest cultivating a skin care regimen for dry skin to soothe painful itching. This may include using ultra-moisturizing skin care products to nourish the skin.
- How do I stop itching all over my body?
For relief from itching, you can opt for self-care measures. These may include applying hypoallergenic moisturizer to the skin, using a humidifier in your home, and taking a bath in lukewarm water. You should also try to identify what triggers your allergy and avoid the cause. This could be wool clothing, an overly heated room, hot baths, or a chemical-laden skin care product.
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