Top 5 Dry Winter Skin Remedies

Aug. 1 2017, Published 10:10 a.m. ET

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Your skin loses moisture because its ability to function as a barrier is compromised. The top layer of your skin, called the epidermis, is structured like a brick wall, which should act like an impermeable barrier to moisture loss. The keratinocytes, or bricks, are stacked one on top of the other, and fats act as a sealant. But there are a number of reasons that the barrier comes down: Two of these fats, ceramides and cholesterol, decline with age. Additionally, many people are taking cholesterol-lowering agents, which can also lead to dryness. A portion of the population has a genetic propensity towards a deficiency in the brick wall structure, which results in eczema. Finally, micro-organisms and irritating chemicals can seep into the permeable structure which can lead to infection, redness, itching and flaking.

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The good news is that dry skin can be managed in the cool, dry months with proper maintenance and quality skin-care products. If dry skin becomes a serious problem, consult your health care provider for more advice. In the meantime, don’t forget to stay hydrated and to limit exposure to the elements. With just a little bit of care, you should be feeling and looking your best this winter, whether you’re on the slopes, relaxing fireside or even braving it out on course during a cold-weather round.


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