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What is Dry Skin?
Dry skin is a very common condition where your skin loses its natural moisture. It is often experienced during winter season, where the outside cold air and the heated air inside cause the humidity to drop. However people can also get dry skin while living in a tropical country where weather tends to be hot. Perhaps their body does not get adequate amount of hydration, or they are bathing and washing their hands using harsh soaps too often.
There are other possible causes: Vitamin deficiencies in A and D may also trigger your skin to get dry. Sunburn is another common one, and dry skin may also be caused as a side-effect of some pharmaceutical drugs.  Having dry skin has never been pleasant. Your skin is flaky and sometimes itchy. In worst cases, there are cracks and peels evident to the naked eye and these can sometimes be surprisingly uncomfortable for their small size. Dry skin looks and feels unappealing to the people suffering from it.
Well, there is good news. If you are suffering from dry skin, postpone paying a visit to a dermatologist or to your local health and beauty store. Expensive creams and derma procedures may not be necessary. Try these natural, gentle remedies to revive your skin’s lost moisture.
10 Natural Ways To Get Rid of Dry Skin
1. Olive Oil – As Barbara Gruffer Hufferman, author of The Best of Everything After 50, said of her best-kept beauty secret, “Using olive oil on just about every part of your body, inside and out.” This golden oil is not a really a secret to the people in Mediterranean countries like Greece, Spain and Italy. It has been a staple in every household and is extensively used in cooking, lamp lighting and of course, the beauty regimen.  Look for extra virgin olive oil, organic if possible. Why the ‘extra virgin’ label? Oils that are labeled extra virgin contain less than 0.8% acidity, therefore are considered safest to be applied on the skin. And the organic oil is less likely to contain pesticide residue.
Dab a small amount of olive oil in the driest areas of your face and body, paying more attention to the knees, elbows, hands, feet and thighs. Massage it well so your skin will absorb the moisturizing benefits of olive oil. To pamper extremely dry skin, leave it overnight and you will wake up to well rested, moisturized skin in the morning.
2. Coconut Oil – Another wonder kitchen product, it seems that there is not anything that coconut oil cannot do. It is popularly used as face / body moisturizer, and hair oil. If your hair and certain parts of your body are dry and blotchy, all you need to do is a dollop of coconut oil and dryness will surely go away. The reason why coconut oil is a great product than your over-the-counter moisturizers is that it is oil-based and contains natural emollient properties, therefore providing best coverage of moisture and penetrating underlying tissues  rather than the water and petroleum-based body lotions and face creams. Go over for extra virgin coconut oil as this type is not deodorized, hydrogenated, refined or bleached in any other way.
3. Honey – Honey’s main use since ancient times has been as a foodstuff and sweetener. However the sticky consistency of honey plus its antibacterial properties create an environment favorable for healing inflammation – without neglecting moisture.  In cases where dry skin has resulted in irritation, honey may be your best ingredient. Honey can be used alone or in combination with other skin fixes that can also be found in the kitchen – such as the ones on this list. As a cleanser, just rub a small amount of raw local honey (why raw?) all over your face, lips, heels and other dry areas using your fingers or with a cotton ball then rinse with lukewarm water. As a facial mask, do the same except wait for another 15 to 30 minutes before rinsing off.
4. Yogurt – Perhaps you are already aware of the many benefits that yogurt brings to our body when consumed. Yogurt contains live “good bacteria” that can help keep the stomach in good state. Yogurt is also rich in lactic acid, which can soothe and exfoliate the skin, tighten the pores, and stimulate collagen production.  The lactic acid content makes yogurt a benefit kitchen item for waving goodbye to dry skin and saying hello to smooth and moisturized skin. Slather your face and other areas that need moisturization with yogurt every morning then wash off with a splash of cold water. At night before retiring, your skin can benefit from a simple facemask recipe of mixing yogurt and honey or oats.
5. Milk – It was Cleopatra who was reported to have popularized milk bathe rituals. Although Cleopatra may never have understood why milk was good for her skin, we do. Like yogurt, milk is has lactic acid that can gently dissolve dead skin cells, a by-product of dry skin, to reveal moisturized, fresh looking new layer of skin. The fat content of milk also helps in conditioning the dry areas of the skin.  You may feel silly at first but goat’s / cow’s milk, or adding a cup of powdered milk to the bath water is a potential way of putting an end to your dry skin. Be sure to rinse off well afterwards.
6. Aloe Vera – It is not a secret that the gel contained within aloe vera leaves is an excellent moisturizing agent. If you have an aloe vera plant in your garden, cut a leaf and split it open – you will see a clear gel and you can apply this directly on skin that needs extra help in moisturization. Aloe vera gel can also be purchased in bottles, typically from healthy food stores.
7. Salt – If your dry skin begins to itch, you might want to try a salt scrub. The simplest method is during bathing, to rub a handful of salt all over your body, paying extra attention to the driest parts like elbows, heels and knees. Not only the mechanism of salt rubbing removes dead skin cells, it will also improve blood circulation. Salt is capable to reduce inflammation, so if your dry skin starts to get irritated, go and douse yourself in a salt water bath. We also have a page with a recipe for making a salt scrub.
8. Oatmeal – Try checking key ingredients of today’s best creams, lotions and moisturizers, and you will notice that oatmeal is included in the list. This is because oatmeal is a tried-and-tested item that relieves dry skin. Dermatologists even recommend an oatmeal bath for babies who have dry skin- that is how effective and amazing oatmeal is. The antioxidants and phenols are the reason why oatmeal makes a cheap and convenient remedy for dry skin.  You could also try cooking the oats with water as per usual until soft and pasty, allow to cool and apply to skin.
9. Avocado – The oil of avocado is rich in vitamins A, E & D that contribute to healthy, moisturized and hydrated skin.  To gain maximum benefit that avocado has to offer, include the fruit in your diet and treat your dry skin to an “avocado mask” composed of honey, sugar and avocado paste. You do not need a lot to put on, just a small amount and massage it gently. Any leftover can be placed in an airtight container and stored briefly in the refrigerator for another use.
10. Water – Your skin is dry and flaky maybe because you are not drinking enough water. Teas, coffees and sodas do not count. You should supplement your body with an adequate amount of water. One indication that your body is dehydrated is dry skin on your heels and lips.
 “Dry Skin.” Medline Plus. ADAM Health Solutions, n.d. Web. 21 July 2013. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003250.htm
 Grufferman, Barbara Hannah. “The Healing Power Of Olive Oil.” Huffpost Healthy Living. Huffington Post, 10 Sept. 2011. Web. 21 July 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/barbara-hannah-grufferman/olive-oil-health-benefits_b_945506.html
 Cowell, Tanya. “Coconut oil ñ All in one natural solution for your skin.” Beauty. Gnet Health and Fitness. N.p., 2 Aug. 2012. Web. 21 July 2013. http://www.gnet.org/coconut-oil-all-in-one-natural-solution-for-your-skin/
 Tao, David. “Soothe Dry Skin With Honey (And Other Tips).” Health. Greatist.com. N.p., 18 Apr. 2012. Web. 22 July 2013. http://greatist.com/health/soothe-dry-skin-honey-and-other-tips
 Shaigany, Sheila. “Yogurt & Honey: 2 Key Ingredients in Your DIY Facial.” Makeup. TLC. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 July 2013. http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/style/yogurt-honey-diy-facial.htm
 “Bathing Milk: A Timeless Beauty Ritual.” Cyren Organics. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 July 2013. http://www.cyrenorganics.com/index.php/skincare-articles/bathing-milk.html/
 Robock, Karen. “Relieve dry skin with an oatmeal bath.” Family Health. Today’s Parent. N.p., 22 Feb. 2012. Web. 22 July 2013. http://www.todaysparent.com/family/family-health/relieve-dry-skin-with-an-oatmeal-bath/
 Adams, Mike. “Avocados offer remarkable benefits for skin health.” Natural News. N.p., 17 Nov. 2009. Web. 22 July 2013. http://www.naturalnews.com/027509_avocado_skin_health.html
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