Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Combating Dry, Flaky Skin

I think everyone has those days (or weeks, months, years or lives) where their skin is as flaky as that one friend that arranges cool things then cancels at the last minute, confusing everyone. A friend of mine (who isn't flaky, apart from their face skin) has asked me to do a post on how to combat dry and flaky skin. So I am. I'm good like that.

I have a tendency for dry skin also, so I reckon the easiest way to demonstrate how to prevent/stop it is to tell y'all my skin routine. Cause my face isn't flaky. So. Logic and reason.

The first thing, only exfoliate 2-3 times a week. Or rather, make sure you exfoliate at least 2-3 times per week. Exfoliation removes the dead skin and oil that accumulates on your skin, leaving the fresh new skin under neath visible for the world to admire. Do it too little, and you're carrying that skin around with you until it naturally sloughs off. I mean, ew, naturally? Who wants that. Scrub scrub.
However, do it too much and you can irritate your skin, it can over produce oil which can lead to breakouts and enlarged pores which I'm sure is exactly what you don't want. So 2-3 times a week is optimal. Between scrubs, using a gentle face wash is perfect. I say face wash, rather than soap, because as the skin on your face is so much more delicate than your hands, conventional hand soap can have a drying affect. Which is the opposite of what you want if you're reading this. Face wash is designed for your face. Take advantage!

As for which exfoliators and face washes to use, they're really all kind of much for muchness. Everyone's skin is different so it'll probably be just a case of trial and error. Obviously if you have sensitive skin, you should start with ones that have "sensitive" written on them, and preferably ones labelled for dry skin, but really just have a look around. I will always always endorse Lush products, not just because they're a cool company, but because I find their products actually work. See my previous favourites post which features one of their scrubs I would kill for. It also features Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour cream, which I also recommend, but it can be kind of pricey.

Now once you have exfoliated, it is super important to moisturise. Exfoliation can really dry the skin out more (I know, weird) so you need to moisturise to regain that balance. The same goes really for any time you cleanse your face. You're wiping away oils designed to keep the skin healthy, they need replacing. I find the Simple range have an excellent variety of moisturisers and you can find them everywhere. Seriously. They had them in Lidls last time I went. They're also really affordable and super kind to your skin. They absorb easily and quickly and aren't sticky.

Quick side bar on how to apply moisturiser, and this is dangerously close to anti-aging territory, but if you smear the product on your fingers (like, all up them) and then pat it on instead of dragging it across the skin, it doesn't damage the skin structure so much. You can also give yourself a little face massage at the same time, remembering not to drag.

Whilst we're dancing next to the anti-aging category, I'd like to mention an ingredient that seems to be n everyones lips (and skin) at the moment. Hyaluronic Acid. Ugh, you say, sounds terribly bad. It's not. It's fantastic. It helps the skin absorb and retain moisture. Because of this it's in a lot of anti-wrinkle creams, but it also works for dry skin. Some of the products that have it listed as an ingredient can be pricey, but in Lidls the other day (I love Lidls.) I found an anti-wrinkle cream that has Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin E. It cost £3.99. Pretty steep for Lidls, I know, but I bought it anyway and I'm actually really liking it. It smells kind of granny-ish, but isn't unpleasant. So that may be worth a shot.

So to summarise:

Exfoliate 2-3 times a week
Face wash everyday
Moisturise every time you cleanse
Treat yourself to a hydrating face mask every now and then

I know I didn't mention the face mask, and you don't have to, I just think face masks are a nice treat. I enjoy them a lot.

Hope this helps! if it does, let me know, if it doesn't, tell me why, if you want to know the exact products I personally use- well. I'm sure something can be arranged.

Ciao bella!

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