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Dry Skin Type | Everything You Need To Know | Weirdskin

What is Dry Skin?

Dry skin refers to a skin type that presents a deficiency in producing enough sebum to trap moisture within the skin in moose layers. people with dry skin tend to experience flakiness and itchiness, are prone to redness and irritation, and struggle with a dull complexion. 


Dry skin usually suffers from a huge amount of water loss also known as transepidermal water loss. While dry skin exists as a skin type, certain forms of dry skin result from a skin disorder this includes skin conditions like eczema, keratosis pilaris, and other forms of skin dermatitis. Below are the different forms of dry skin or different conditions that could lead to dry skin.

Types of Dry Skin

Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis also known as skin allergy is a skin condition that occurs when the skin presents a form of irritation from the topical application of a skincare product or any other substance to which the individual skin is allergic. Contact dermatitis usually manifests in the form of dry patches on the skin redness itchiness or flakiness on the contact area.

Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic dermatitis is a common skin condition that usually affects the scalp and other areas of the skin like the mouth the nose area around the eyebrows eyelids and sometimes around the chest. This condition occurs as an autoimmune response by the skin to a trigger. The causes of seborrheic dermatitis are not clear to date however this condition manifests in the form of scaly, dry, and flaky patches, skin inflammation, and in the case of a scalp infection causes the condition commonly known as dandruff.

Atopic Dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis, often referred to as eczema, is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder marked by itchy, red, and flaking skin patches. Typically emerging in early childhood, it can continue into adulthood for some individuals. While the precise cause remains elusive, it is thought to result from a mix of genetic predisposition, environmental factors, and immune system irregularities.


Although eczema can lead to dry skin, not all dry skin is eczema. Various triggers, ranging from allergens and irritants to temperature changes and stress, can exacerbate the condition. While no definitive cure exists, treatment focuses on alleviating symptoms, and preventing flare-ups, and includes the use of moisturizers, anti-inflammatory drugs, and avoiding known triggers.

Chronic Dry Skin

Chronic dry skin refers to persistently dry skin that doesn't improve despite regular moisturizing. It's often associated with conditions like eczema, psoriasis, or older age, where the skin struggles to retain moisture due to factors like a weakened skin barrier, decreased oil production, or underlying inflammatory processes.


On the other hand, having a "dry skin type" is a classification of skin that naturally produces less sebum (skin oil) than other skin types. People with this skin type may experience tightness, flakiness, or a rough texture, but it's their baseline, rather than a deviation caused by an underlying condition or external factor. While those with a dry skin type might occasionally have periods where their skin feels more moisturized or less dry (like in humid weather), chronic dry skin tends to persist regardless of external conditions and requires more targeted treatments to address the underlying cause.

Causes and Symptoms of Dry Skin

Irrespective of whether you have a dry skin type, or your skin dryness is caused by an underlying skin condition understanding what causes dry skin. Here is a list of things that can cause  or exacerbate dry skin;


  • Environmental factors: Low humidity, cold weather, and harsh winds can strip the skin of its natural moisture.

  • Hot showers: Frequent and prolonged hot showers or baths can dehydrate the skin. This can both cause or worsen dry skin.

  • Harsh soaps and detergents: Products that aren't pH-balanced can remove natural oils from the skin.

  • Aging: As people age, the skin produces less sebum leading to dryness.

  • Medical conditions: Conditions like hypothyroidism, diabetes, and atopic dermatitis can cause dry skin

  • Medications: Some medicines, like diuretics or retinoids, can lead to dry skin as a side effect.

  • Dehydration: Insufficient water intake can reduce skin hydration.

  • Over-exfoliation: Using exfoliating agents too frequently can strip the skin of essential oils.


  • Rough texture: Skin may feel coarse to the touch.

  • Itching: One of the most common symptoms associated with dry skin.

  • Flaking or scaling: Skin may shed tiny, dry skin flakes.

  • Redness: Areas of dry skin might appear reddened or inflamed.

  • Cracks: In severe cases, skin might develop fine lines or cracks.

  • Tightness: Especially after bathing or washing the face.

  • Dullness: Skin might lose its natural glow and appear dull.

  • Increased sensitivity: Dry skin may be more sensitive to products or environmental factors.

How To Take Care of Dry Skin

Irrespective of whether you have a dry skin type, or your skin dryness is caused by an underlying skin condition understanding what causes dry skin. Here is a list of things that can cause  or exacerbate dry skin;

Gentle Cleansing

Use a mild, hydrating cleanser that doesn't strip the skin's natural oils. Avoid soaps with high alcohol or astringent properties.

Moisturize Regularly

Apply a rich moisturizer immediately after bathing and throughout the day as needed. Look for products containing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and natural oils.

Limit Hot Showers

Opt for lukewarm water when bathing or showering. Hot water can strip the skin's natural oils, exacerbating dryness.

Humidify The Air

Use a humidifier in your home, especially during colder months, to increase moisture levels in the air.

Protect from the Sun

Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen daily. I wrote an in-depth article on how to choose the best sunscreen. Sun damage can reduce the skin's ability to retain moisture. 

Exfoliate Gently

Remove dead skin cells with a gentle exfoliator once a week. Avoid aggressive scrubs, which can cause micro-tears and worsen dryness. Here is an exfoliation guide you can follow.

Drink Water

Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. This helps maintain skin elasticity and moisture.

Wear Soft Fabrics

Choose natural, soft fabrics like cotton that allow the skin to breathe. Avoid itchy or rough materials like wool directly against the skin.

Avoid Irritants

Reduce the use of skin products with alcohol, fragrance, using too much of retinoids or exfoliating acids, which can dry out the skin further.


Incorporate foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon, flaxseeds, and walnuts, which can help strengthen the skin's lipid barrier, locking in moisture.

Consuming foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants can help support skin hydration and health. Examples:

  • Salmon

  • Flaxseeds

  • Walnuts

  • Avocado

  • Olive oil


Foods rich in antioxidants can provide some level of protection against sun damage.

  • Berries (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries)

  • Green tea

  • Spinach

  • Dark chocolate

Apart from plain water, consuming hydrating foods can also contribute to overall hydration.

  • Cucumber

  • Watermelon

  • Strawberries

  • Cantaloupe

  • Peaches

Drink enough water too. Here are a few tips to increase your water intake;

  • Reusable water bottles like Hydro Flask or Nalgene to encourage regular hydration.

  • Water filter pitchers, like Brita or PUR, for cleaner drinking water.

Seek Professional Help

If dryness persists or if the skin becomes extremely irritated, it might be a sign of an underlying condition. In such cases, consult a dermatologist for specialized advice and treatment options.

My Recommendations for Dry Skin Persons

Here are a few products that are very good for dry skin. I would also recommend certain foods that would help with the health of your dry skin.

Use Gentle Cleansers and Fragrance-free Soaps

Protect your skin's natural moisture barrier by opting for gentle cleansers and avoiding harsh, fragrance-laden soaps.

Apply Sunscreen

  • EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

  • La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-in Milk Sunscreen SPF 100

  • Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen SPF 55

  • CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion with Sunscreen

Other Care Tips For Dry Skin

Wear Protective Clothing

  • Clothing Choices: Opt for layered clothing made from soft, breathable materials like cotton or moisture-wicking fabrics to keep the skin insulated without causing irritation.

  • Scarves and Face Masks: These can protect the face and neck from cold winds and dry air, helping to prevent moisture loss.

  • Lip Balm: The lips are particularly vulnerable to chapping in cold weather. Keep them protected with a moisturizing lip balm.

Limit Hot Water Exposure

  • Shorter Showers/Baths: Limit showers to 10 minutes or less and use lukewarm water rather than hot.

  • Gentle Bath Oils: Adding moisturizing bath oils or oatmeal treatments can help soothe and hydrate the skin.

  • Pat Dry: Instead of rubbing your skin with a towel, gently pat it dry to avoid stripping away natural oils.

Rinse and Moisturize After Swimming

  • Immediate Rinsing: After exiting the pool, rinse off immediately with fresh water to remove chlorine and other chemicals.

  • Apply a Barrier Cream: Before swimming, use a barrier cream to provide an extra layer of protection against the chlorine.

  • Intense Moisturization: Post-swimming, apply a thick moisturizing lotion or cream to counteract the drying effects of the pool water.

Wear Gloves

  • Cotton Liners: If wearing rubber gloves, consider using cotton liner gloves underneath to absorb sweat and reduce irritation.

  • Moisturizing Gloves: For an intensive treatment, apply a thick moisturizer and wear moisturizing gloves overnight. This can help heal dry and cracked hands.

  • Choose Natural Rubber: If you're allergic to latex, opt for gloves made from natural rubber.

  • Glove Selection: For gardening or household chores, choose gloves appropriate to the task to prevent exposure to drying elements or irritants.


Incorporating these additional care tips can further shield your skin from external irritants and conditions that exacerbate dryness, helping to maintain its natural moisture barrier.

Best Products For Dry Skin I Have Used

As a dry skin girlie myself here is a list of the best moisturizing products I have tried and actually made a difference;


What is the Main Cause of Dry Skin?

Dry skin primarily results from genetic factors, or environmental factors such as cold or dry weather, low humidity, and over-exposure to hot water. Additionally, certain medical conditions, aging, and harsh skincare products can also cause dry skin.

What is the Best Natural Remedy for Dry Skin?

Aloe vera, coconut oil, and honey are among the best natural remedies for dry skin due to their moisturizing and soothing properties.

How Do You Treat Dry Skin?

Treating dry skin involves moisturizing regularly, using gentle skincare products, protecting skin from harsh weather, and staying hydrated. Avoiding hot showers and certain irritants is also recommended.

What is the Fastest Way To Hydrate Dry Skin?

For quick hydration, apply a thick moisturizing cream or oil to damp skin immediately after showering to lock in moisture. Hyaluronic acid serums can also provide rapid hydration.

Can Dry Skin Cause Acne?

Yes, dry skin can lead to acne. When the skin is overly dry, it might produce extra sebum (oil), leading to clogged pores and breakouts. Furthermore, flaky skin can trap bacteria, exacerbating acne.

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