Dry Skin

Dry skin leads to cracking of the upper layer of skin and gives it a real bad appearance. The main causes of dry skin include: dry climate, hormonal changes, too much exfoliation and treatment of other skin disorders.

‘Dry skin care’ starts with moisturisers, the most effective remedy for dry skin. Generally moisturisers are classified under 2 categories based on the way they provide ‘dry skin care’.

The first category includes moisturisers that provide ‘dry skin care’ just by preserving the moisture within the skin e.g. Vaseline. These moisturisers are relatively inexpensive and are readily available (even at grocery shops).

The second category includes moisturisers that work by drawing moisture from the environment and supplying it to the skin. This is a very effective way of ‘dry skin care’ in humid conditions. The moisturisers that provide ‘dry skin care’ in this way are also called humectants. For proper dry skin care, you must use a non-greasy type of moisturiser, as far as possible. Humectants fall in this category. The ingredients of humectants include propylene glycol, urea, glycerine, hyaluronic acid etc

‘Dry skin care’ is not about just using moisturisers but also using them properly. The best ‘dry skin care procedure’ is to cleanse the skin before the application of moisturiser. You can make your ‘dry skin care’ even more effective by applying the moisturiser while the skin is still damp (after cleansing). Also, make sure that you use soap-free products (especially on your face, neck and arms). Exfoliation does help in dry skin care, by removing the dead skin cells. However, don’t exfoliate too hard. Your dry skin care procedures/products should also take care of sun protection. Avoid too much and too direct exposure to sun (simply by using an umbrella/hat etc). Use a good sunscreen lotion before going out. A lot of moisturisers provide sun protection too, along with dry skin care.

You also have natural products for ‘dry skin care’ i.e. products that provide ‘dry skin care’ in a natural way (without the use of synthetic chemicals). These dry skin care products supply lipid enhancements to the skin, hence enabling moisture retention within the skin. Another, important thing for ‘dry skin care’ is the temperature of water you use for shower or for washing your face – Use warm water; too hot or too cold water can cause dryness too.

‘Dry skin care’ is also about being gentle with your skin. You should avoid harsh detergents and alcohol based cleansers. Also, after a face wash, do not rub your towel on your face, just pat gently to soak the water off.

 

Oily Skin

Oily skin is a result of excessive production of sebum (an oily substance that is naturally produced by skin).  It leads to clogging of skin pores, resulting in accumulation of dead cells and hence formation of pimples/acne. Moreover, oily skin spoils your looks too

The basic aim of ‘oily skin care’ is the removal of excessive sebum or oil from the skin. However, oily skin care procedures should not lead to complete removal of oil. ‘Oily skin care’ starts with the use of a cleanser. However, not all cleansers will work. You need a cleanser which contains salicylic acid i.e. a beta-hydroxy acid that retards the rate of sebum production. Cleansing should be done twice a day (and even more in hot and humid conditions).

Most of the oily skin care products are oil-free; however, it is always good to check the ingredients of the product, before you actually buy it. This is especially important if a product is marked as ‘suitable for all skin types’, instead of ‘oily skin care product’. ‘Oily skin care’ is also dependent on the degree of oiliness, if you aren’t too oily, so some of these ‘suitable for all’- type of products might work for you too. For extremely oily skin, only oily skin care products are suitable. Your oily skin care routine can include an alcohol based toner (for an extremely oily skin). This can be the second step in your oily skin care routine i.e. just after cleansing. However, excessive toning can harm your skin.

The next step in your oily skin care routine can be a mild moisturiser. Again, the degree of oiliness of your skin will determine whether you need to include this in your oily skin care routine. If you do decide to include a moisturiser, be sure to use one that is oil-free, wax-free and lipid-free.
You could also use a clay mask (say once a week) as an oily skin care measure.

In case these measures don’t give you the desired result, consult a good dermatologist for advice. He could prescribe stronger oily skin care products like vitamin A creams, retinoids, sulphur creams etc , which can help counter the problems of oily skin.

 

Sensitive Skin

Sensitive skin is one which is unable to tolerate any unfavourable conditions (environmental/other), and which easily gets irritated on contact with foreign materials (including skin care products). For this reason, some products are especially labelled as sensitive skin care products. The degree of sensitivity can however vary from person to person (and depending on that, the sensitive skin care procedures vary too).

Generally, all skin types respond negatively to detergents and other chemical based products. However, the damage starts generally beyond a defined threshold (or tolerance level). This tolerance level is very low for sensitive skin types, leading to skin getting damaged very easily and quickly. Sensitive skin care products either avoid the potential irritants or keep them at very low concentrations.

Here are a few tips for sensitive skin care:
* Use sensitive skin care products only (i.e. the products that are marked for sensitive skin care only). Also, check the instructions/ notes on the product to see if there are specific restrictions/warnings associated with the product).
* Even within the range of sensitive skin care products, choose the one that has minimum preservatives, colourings and other additives
* Do not use toners. Most of them are alcohol based and are not recommended for sensitive skin.
* Wear protective gloves when doing laundry or other chemical based cleaning. If you are allergic to rubber, you can wear cotton gloves below the rubber ones.
* Another important tip for ‘sensitive skin care’ is to avoid excessive exposure to sun. Apply sunscreen lotion before getting out in the sun.
* Avoiding exposure to dust and other pollutants is also important for sensitive skin care. So, cover yourself adequately before going out.
* Use hypoallergenic, noncomedogenic moisturizer as a sensitive skin care product (if there is none specifically labelled as a sensitive skin care product)
* Use soap-free and alcohol free cleansers. Cleanse your face whenever you return from spending time out doors.
* Do not scrub or exfoliate too hard. It can cause reddishness and even inflammation.
* Do not leave the makeup on for too long. Use hypoallergenic makeup- removers.

So, sensitive skin care is very different from the normal skin care. Sensitive skin care is more about being careful with your skin (both in terms of sensitive skin care products and protection against environments atrocities on skin).