Rodan + Fields product expert-in-residence Mary Radford, RN, on the causes of dry skin — and how to cope.
Q: Help! Why is my skin so dry?
A: Lots of things can make skin look or feel dry, including genetics, certain illnesses and medications, aging and climate. We can’t control the weather or the date on our birth certificate, but we can replenish dry skin and help keep it from getting too dry in the first place.
Q. Why does my usually normal skin get so dry in the winter?
A. When it’s very cold outside, the humidity drops. This lack of moisture in the air leads to visible skin dryness. Turning up the heat, cozying up to a fire or taking a hot shower may make your dry skin worse: The heat may feel good, but it can also be dehydrating.
Q. What about the opposite – why does my skin get so dry in the summer?
A. In the warmer months, most people expose more skin to the elements. Heat and wind evaporate skin’s natural surface moisture. So do UV rays, especially if you get sunburned. Plus, chlorinated pools and saltwater are dehydrating — the list goes on and on!
Q. How do I treat dry skin?
A. I’ve got three words for you: Exfoliate. Hydrate. Moisturize.
I exfoliate my face and body with Rodan + Fields ENHANCEMENTS Micro-Dermabrasion Paste two to four times a week. (If you’re new to exfoliation, more than once a week may be too irritating, so start slow.) The next step is to drench your skin from the outside in. For your face, try Rodan + Fields Active Hydration Serum. Apply your moisturizer on top of the serum.
For your body, the “hydrate and moisturize” steps are extra-easy: Rodan + Fields Active Hydration Body Replenish does both! (Click here for more about the difference between hydration and moisturization.)
Q. What if my skin is so dry it hurts?
A. Once skin becomes cracked and flaky, it’s challenging to get it back on track. Tiny fissures in cracked skin make it even more vulnerable to irritation, so skip the exfoliation and pamper skin by hydrating and moisturizing for several days. Once your skin is in better shape, you can add gentle exfoliation. (Our Soothe Regimen for sensitive skin can work wonders on dry skin, too.)
Q. How can I prevent dry skin?
A. Skip drying soap and opt for a cleansing cream. Bundle up in the winter and wear sun-protective clothing in the summer. Wear sunscreen every day, 365 days a year. And drink more water, too!
What’s your go-to product for dry skin?