The Top 5 Causes of Super Dry Skin in Females
Super dry isn’t just unhealthy, it’s uncomfortable.
This irritating but extremely common skin condition stems from a lack of the appropriate quantity of water in the most superficial layer of the skin. From itching and scaling to crackling and flaking, dry skin shows itself in a variety of different ways and it goes without saying that developing red dry skin or scaly patches can be a little scary.
Not sure if you’re definitely suffering from dry skin? Here’s what it looks and feels like:
- Skin that looks and feels rough
- Skin that appears to be flaking, scaling or peeling
- A grey or ash-like complexion
- Deep cracks that sometimes bleed
- Tightness, particularly after the area, has gotten wet (showering, swimming etc)
Everything from the skincare products that you use, to your diet and harsh weather conditions, can result in very dry skin. If you’re suffering from particularly painful and severely dry skin on the face, the causes could actually be more of a long-term skin condition.
Here, we talk you through the top 5 causes of very dry flaky skin - and you might be surprised.
1. Too much exfoliating
You can never exfoliate too much, right? Wrong. Although exfoliating is an extremely vital aspect of your skincare regime, surprisingly, there is definitely such a thing as too much of a good thing. If you’re dealing with overly dry flaky skin on your face, the causes often boil down to, you guessed it, too much exfoliation. We recommend sticking to exfoliating just twice a week if you have sensitive, dry skin, as you could end up depleting your skin’s barrier and making the lack of moisture even worse. It’s really important that you replenish the oils and moisture that you lose while exfoliating by using an oil-based moisturiser to seal in hydration.
From over-cleansing to using a cleanser that actually disrupts your skins PH levels, issues related to cleansing are one of the main causes for dry flaky skin on the face - seriously. Just like too much exfoliation, too much cleansing can damage the skin's natural barrier, especially if you’re using a particularly soapy cleanser. If you already have super dry skin, cleansing twice a day could be stripping your skin of natural oils and moisture, taking with it all of the healthy skin hydrators that your complexion needs in order to look its healthiest. Oil based cleansers are your go-to product for washing away toxins and dirt without removing all the good stuff, and avoid products that contain SLS or that are foaming as they can dry out skin.
3. Harsh weather & excess heat
When the colder weather arrives, the humidity and moisture levels in the atmosphere dramatically decrease. The cold air can really aggravate already dry skin, especially when it comes to your face and hands. Since they’re not often covered like the other parts of your body, it can lead to dry skin cracking and bleeding which means a lot of discomfort and pain. Invest in a deliciously scented hand cream and choose from almond, rose and more - you’ll smell as good as you feel! Get your scarves and gloves out of hibernation and wrap up during those frosty winter mornings. Oh and another thing, as much as you want to go heavy on the central heating, try not to! Any kind of excess heat will only further reduce humidity in the air and dry out your skin. *Sigh* We suggest that you invest in a fluffy new dressing gown to keep you cosy this winter.
4. An unhealthy gut
if you’re wondering about your dry flaky skin on the face, the causes are related to what you put into your body, rather than what you’re putting onto your skin. Studies show that there is a huge correlation between gut and skin health. Confused? It can be a little hard to wrap your head around, but our gut microbiome is a collection of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa colonising our GI system, and the beneficial effects of gut bacteria on skin health and appearance have been documented in countless studies. In other words, To reduce the symptoms of dry skin, team healthy fats such as salmon, avocados and walnuts with the right skincare routine for the ultimate game-changer. Now, for the liquid - put your third latte of the day down ladies. When it comes to dehydrated skin all over the body and dry skin on the face, the causes often lie in the alcohol, caffeine and coffee. Sure you’re enjoying them, but since they are diuretics that cause dehydration - your body certainly isn’t. Swap your latte for a bottle of water and welcome that healthy glow that you deserve.
5. Serious skin conditions
When it comes to particularly painful or red dry skin on the face, the cause could actually be down to a more serious skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis. Not sure? We break down the difference below:
- Eczema: Otherwise known as atopic dermatitis, it’s safe to say that eczema on the face, hands, elbows or wherever it’s decided to rudely turn up, is no fun at all. Breakouts occur due to hypersensitive reactions to a number of things, and by a number, we mean a lot. From dyes, soaps and fabrics to the sun, stress and other irritants, the list is different from person to person. Flare-ups usually involve intense itchiness, overly cracked skin, and even weeping, bleeding blister-like bumps.
- Psoriasis: This chronic autoimmune condition results in the overproduction of skin cells, so dry flaky skin on the face can be caused by the build-up of excess skin cells becoming red and inflamed. Picture scaly white and red patches, pretty much anywhere and everywhere on the body. Just like eczema, psoriasis isn’t curable but can be kept at bay with topical treatments and healthy lifestyle choices. Diets packed with healthy veggies and fruits, fatty fish and vitamin D supplements can really work their wonders on your psoriasis breakouts.
Whether you’re struggling with dryness all over the body or particularly super dry and flaky skin on the face, the causes are often small lifestyle choices that you can easily change. With a targeted skincare regime suitable for sensitive dry skin and some healthier lifestyle tweaks, you’ll see an improvement towards softer and smoother skin.
Finding your dry and itchy skin impossible to ignore? We recommend that you see a doctor or a dermatologist who will work with you to diagnose your condition and help you avoid irritants.
Once you find out what works for you, you’ll begin to fight off those pesky dry skin patches. To start working towards getting your gorgeous glow back, discover the range of dermatologically tested, paraben and cruelty-free skincare and beauty products from Innoxa.