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As the winters are approaching, Dry skin is especially common in winter months and causes itchiness and dryness on the face. At this time of the month the skin doesn’t retain moisture and skin may feel itchy and uncomfortable.

It becomes very difficult to figure out how to keep skin moisturized in the winter.

Dr Geeta Grewal -Cosmetic surgeon Anti-aging, beauty and wellness expert explains about All you need to know about Dry Skin, Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Dry skin is due to absence of moisture in top layers of skin, decrease in this outer skin layer water content gives a feeling of dry stretchy, itchy, irritated skin. 

This happens due to transepidermal water loss which could be induced by environmental factors , winters , low humidity levels pollutants, friction , air conditioning, room heating, chemical over use , hot water shower, frequent washing , long bubble bath , swimming, aging , hormonal fluctuations, topical medication all these factors can lead to dry itchy irritated skin which has reduced elasticity and looks dull and wrinkled.

Lipid mixture of ceramides cholesterol, fatty acids and lactic acid, urea maintain natural moisturizing factor are effective barrier functions of skin. Essential fatty acids as linolenic linoleic and oleic acids obtained from a healthy diet rich in omega 3,6 and 9 fatty acids and creams containing this help to maintain natural moisturizing factors level and hence keep skin hydration healthy. Natural moisturizing factor adapts to environmental changes. Dry skin amplified in low humidity stimulates NMF production. 

Use a combination of occlusives and humectants and emollients to sooth the top layer. Occlusives help to make a barrier on dry skin preventing transepidermal water loss squalene soy oil grape seed oil, rosehip oil, extra virgin coconut oil, hemp seed oil wheat germ oil and not only act as occlusives they stimulate collagen formation as well. 

Used by Egyptians Romans and Greeks for healthy skin extra virgin olive oil scavenge reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. 

Humectants have high water absorption capacity they can absorb water from the environment or deeper skin layers to give that stretch smooth look to the top skin layer making the wrinkles less obvious most of the over the counter available anti-wrinkle creams have a strong humectant as major ingredient. Look out for glycerine sorbitol sodium hyaluronate urea propylene glycol alpha hydroxy acids and sugars. Glycerine, a strong humectant resembles the natural moisturizing factor NMF, it not only hydrates but creates a reservoir of moisture that helps to keep skin in haemostasis. 

Urea based creams give strong hydration. Glycolic acid and lactic acid derived from sugarcane and sour milk are effective in skin hydration and also give ceramide production thus decreasing TEWL Hyaluronic acid is a hygroscopic sugar that gives intense hydration. 

Effective Home remedy for dry skin whole oat flour mixed with honey and glycerine can give prolonged hydration when used as a regular skincare face pack.

Moisturisers with additives like vitamin C E coenzyme Q10 niacinamide copper tripeptides also give additional antioxidants effects help to quench free radicals and give anti-aging benefits.

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