This winter I have had more clients asking me about dry winter skin than at any other time in my career. I always have a few suggestions specific to the client I’m working on but I decided today to write an all-inclusive formula especially for skin over fifty. (Or forty. Or thirty.)
First thing I will tell you is that you bathe too often, use too hot of water and stay too long in the shower or bath. We Americans are cleanaholics and we pay for it with lizard kin and snake scales! Bathing every other day is fine. Clean your Fluff, under your arms and your feet daily, but not your body! Later in this article I’ll explain what to do on the no shower days.
First thing I will tell you is that you bathe too often, use too hot of water and stay too long in the shower or bath.
Moisturizing the body skin takes three components: Water to hydrate, lipids or oils to moisturize and an occlusive agent to seal everything in. So . . . promptly after shower or bath, towel dry gently and apply a skin friendly oil to the skin and massage it in. My personal favorite is Bio-Oil which contains Vitamins A, C and E which feed the skin as well as moisturize it. Continual use helps eliminate scarring, stretch marks and dehydration. This stuff is nothing if not a miracle oil!
Next apply a body lotion or cream which contains one or more of the following ingredients: mineral oil, petrolatum, paraffin, beeswax, glycerin, dimethicone, shea butter or lanolin. (Lanolin, popular in the ’40’s and ’50’s is hard to find these days . . . check out the diabetic skin section in your drugstore. I love Lantiseptic Daily Care Skin Protectant, especially on my feet). BTW, I am not above slathering myself with Baby Powder Scented Vaseline after applying my Bio-Oil, patting off the excess with my towel and wrapping myself up in flannel pajamas for a night.
I am a dedicated practitioner of Dry Brush Bathing.
For body soap, use Natural Beauty Soap Bar, available at Sprouts, Whole Foods or Amazon. This soap is pH balanced for skin and will not strip your natural oils or irritate your Fluff though I do prefer Vagisil Cleanser for those sensitive areas.
I am a dedicated practitioner of Dry Brush Bathing. If you have never heard of this I will explain. Prior to my shower or bath I run a large headed natural bristle brush over my body. This not only exfoliates the skin, but done properly —moving toward the major lymphatic drainage points — will cleanse you internally as well. I consider Dry Brush Bathing one of the most important things I do for my health. (Note: If you are prone to Purpura — easily bruised — find a very soft brush, most likely it will have to be synthetic.)
Once or twice a week I give myself a home Spa treatment. After the Dry Brush Bathing, I get in the shower and use my Fresh Lemon Glow (16 oz $37) as a scrub. I apply in circular movements and again moving toward the major lymphatic drainage point — from the feet upwards on the legs to the groin and from the hands, arms, back and chest to the armpits. I rinse off with tepid water, lightly towel dry and and apply a lotion with one of the occlusive ingredients in it. I lay a small towel down in the shower before I start so I don’t slip!
What I have listed is a maintenance program for beautifully soft, smooth and youthful skin.
On no shower days, after cleaning your Fluff, under your arms and feet, spray the skin with Sea Plasma Hair and Skin All Purpose Moisturizer and rehydrate with Bio-Oil and the cream or lotion of your choice.
Special Note: For rough and calloused feet, use a pumice stone overtime you bathe. Apply Allpresan Pedicare Foot Care Foam or Lantiseptic Daily Care SkinProtecant or Vaseline and go to sleep with socks on. Keep your sandel wearing for special occasions.
These are all topical solutions for aged, withering, scaly, cracked and crepy winter or chronically dry skin. It does not take in the full scope of other valuable ingredients for excessively dry skin such as glycolic or lactic acid and the tried and true urea, an old but amazing ingredient. What I have listed above is a maintenance program for beautifully soft, smooth and youthful skin.
(First published 02/21/16)