A Guide to Caring for Dry Skin

When the ash monster comes to visit, you know you need to get busy moisturizing. Dry skin is not only uncomfortable and unappealing; it indicates a lack of attention to your personal well being. We’re all busy these days, but caring for your dry skin can make you feel better and proud that you care enough about yourself to do something special . . . just for you. The following tips can also be used to show your love and concern for someone special. I remember when my late maternal grandmother was in her last days. I bonded with her by massaging her frail, dry hands with thick, fragrant creams. She loved it and did I. Her hands had baked many a cake and wiped many a tear. They deserved all the TLC they could get. So do you!

As the seasons change, so must our skin and hair care regimen. In warmer weather, lighter moisturizers are needed to effectively moisturize without occluding the pores and creating a heat rash. In cooler, dryer weather, more intense moisturizing treatment is required to reduce the irritating effects of dry skin.

Managing dry skin involves three basic steps:

1. Cleansing with mild, nondrying cleansers
2. Gentle exfoliation with body scrubs and a pumice stone for your dry feet (1-2 times per
3. Moisturizing, moisturizing, moisturizing!!

Body washes which contain emollients are a wonderful way to clean dry skin. There are so many products available for this process. Many companies offer products which contain a line of three items for each step. Lucky us!

Exfoliating requires applying a nice body scrub and using a loofah to gently massage away the dead skin cells which cause scaliness. A pumice stone can be used to exfoliate the thick skin which builds up on the soles of your feet.

There are three levels of moisturizing:

  1. Intense– Ointment based products trap moisture onto the skin surface most effectively. These products should be applied to soaking wet skin and massaged in. The extra water on the surface of the skin should be lightly towel dried. You may feel a bit sticky for a few hours until your skin absorbs the moisture. Using an ointment based product on hands and feet then covering with cotton socks overnight provides an intense moisturizing treatment for hard-to-treat areas of dryness.
  2. Moderate– Cream and butter based products are moderately effective in maintaining skin moisture. They can be applied to towel dried skin or during other times of the day. During winter months, it is a good idea to apply a cream based product after hand washing to keep hands soft and supple.
  3. Mild– Lotions and oils are the least effective in maintaining skin moisture; however they are the easiest to apply. These products are better reserved for warmer weather, as they do not tend to occlude the pores as easily as ointments and creams.

If your skin is very sensitive, be careful of using products that have heavy fragrance, as doing so may cause irritation.

Some recommended products:

Dove Body Wash

Neutrogena Sugar Scrub


Pomegranate Body Butter

Pomegranate Sugar Scrub

Pomegranate Polish

For ALL of you strictly natural ladies:

Maile Kawai– – Great body scrubs and emollients in flavors like Lilikon lemongrass, Coffee Macadamia Nut, Sugar Cane Ginger

Pure Fiji– – Sugar scrubs in yummy flavors (Coconut Milk and Honey, Pineapple, White Ginger Lily, and Mango). You can coordinate with the Hydrating lotion, Shower gel, Nourishing oil, and Room mist!

Kai– – Body polish, Body butter and lotion, and Body wash.

Hope this information helps you stay smooth and sleek!

Until next time . . .

Take care of yourself, so you can care for others. Do your best to be your best. The better you are, the brighter the world gets.

Disclaimer: This information does not serve as a substitute for individual medical care by a physician. This article is an informative guide to point you in the right direction. All product recommendations and advice are suggestions which may or may not work for your individual needs. Specific medical issues and concerns should be addressed by your health care provider. Patricia Perry, M.D. is a dermatologist in private practice in Southern California who can be reached for consultation at 2625 W. Alameda Ave., Suite 504, Burbank, CA 91505. Phone: (818)559- SKIN (7546).