Dry skin is a common condition that can cause skin to become flaky, red, cracked, and itchy; and it can appear all over the body. Dry skin is especially common in the winter, but some people are just more prone to it than others, and experience it all year round. There are many home remedies for dry skin to try that can relieve the itching and prevent the dryness from coming back.
One of the best home remedies for dry skin is to change the temperature of the shower or bathtub. Rather than taking scalding hot showers and baths, switch to lukewarm water, which is much gentler on the skin. This is especially true on the face; use cooler, lukewarm water when washing the face, and pat the skin dry - do not rub.
The soap that is used for cleansing the face and body is also important. It is a good idea to choose a soap-free cleanser, as soap is very drying. Liquid and gel cleansers tend to be gentler on the skin than bar cleansers as well. If a particular cleanser seems to be causing irritation, simply switch to a different one. Exfoliating cleansers may be great home remedies for dry skin, because they can help to remove dead, flaking skin; just be sure not to use one too frequently, which could make the condition worse.
Moisturizer is, of course, one of the best remedies for dry skin. It is best to apply moisturizer immediately after stepping out of the shower or washing the face, because the moisturizer can help to seal the water in the skin. Body moisturizers should be thick and rich to last all day. Apply a moisturizer that contains sunscreen to the face during the day, and apply a rich night cream to moisturize skin overnight.
Moisturizers that contain shea butter, cocoa butter, and aloe are often great choices for home remedies for dry skin. If hands or feet are particularly dry, apply a thick layer of moisturizer before bed, then put on socks and soft gloves; this will help the moisturizer to be better absorbed. In addition, wear gloves when doing the dishes or using household cleaning products. Some people find that taking a bath with oatmeal or cornstarch in the water can be a great way to soften dry skin as well. A humidifier added to a room at night can also moisten the air and prevent skin from drying out.