Many of us have those days when we realize how dull, dry and patchy our skin is. And many of us have those nights when we attempt to combat the problem by engaging in a long ritual involving cleansers, toners and five different nighttime creams.
If you can relate to these scenarios, you're one of millions of Americans who try to fight dry skin with a bathroom cabinet full of skin care products. Dry skin, or xerosis, can appear on all parts of the body [source: Caplan]. The most common treatment is the application of a daily moisturizer to prevent more serious conditions from developing. But controlling flaky, scaly skin can be as simple as showering in cooler water or changing your cleanser. In fact, you can simplify your daily skin care regimen once you understand the causes and best treatments for dry skin.
Your outermost layer of skin, which contains protective oils, is your best defense against harmful drying elements like the sun and wind. But it's easy to strip the skin of these oils through exposure to the elements or by not using the appropriate skin care products. The cosmetics industry is a billion-dollar business, and there are many cleansers, lotions and creams on the market that boast unique formulas and great benefits. These products are designed for different parts of the body and incorporate various combinations of lubricating and cleansing elements. The number of choices can be overwhelming, so you must arm yourself with the right information to treat your dry skin. You may think one size fits all, but you need to understand what key ingredients will work best for you.
Read on to learn how to properly moisturize dry skin.