Dry skin is an issue that plagues many people, whether seasonally or on a chronic, every day basis. On the face, it most commonly affects the cheeks, underaye area, and area around the mouth, though that varies per person. Causes vary as well and include lipid changes due to aging, an underlying skin or health disorder, dehydration, or environmental issues.
Dry skin can be a very uncomfortable condition, both physically and emotionally. It can even break, in extreme cases, which may lead to infection and scarring. Fortunately, there are a variety of natural dry skin remedies that really work and are safe and easy to try both in the treatment room and at home. obtainable to treat dry skin naturally.
Here are 8 of our top natural dry skin remedies:
One of our favorite centuries-old natural dry skin remedies cucumbers. Cucumbers are extremely hydrating since they are 90% water. Their cooling, soothing properties, and abundance of skin-supportive nutrients like the B-vitamins biotin, thiamine (B1), and pantothenic acid (B5); as well as Vitamins A, C, and K (which work together synergistically, by the way). Cucumbers also contain molybdenum, magnesium, potassium and other helpful minerals; as well as anti-inflammatory flavonoids, lignans, and triterpenes. Cut a cucumber into slices and apply them to all dry, irritated areas of the face for 10 minutes daily. You can even puree the cucumber (skins included, as that’s where the majority of the nutrients are) and apply it as a mask.
Aloe vera helps to hydrate dry and irritated skin with its strong humectant properties, and also forms a non-greasy, breathable yet protective emollient barrier on the surface. The gel contains multiple antioxidants, minerals, enzymes, vitamins that nurture and support healing skin. It has curative properties that are beneficial for acne skin, and other to soothe minor skin irritations, blisters, and cuts.
Try mixing aloe vera gel with cucumber and/or whole Greek yogurt as a cooling, soothing, and hydrating smoothie mask. Some people also benefit from drinking aloe vera juice, though certain people with poor digestive function may not tolerate it.
Shea butter is known to be one of the most healing emollients on the planet. It is rich in Vitamins A, E, F, and K, which are key components for a range of skin healthy benefits including fighting dry skin and acne, and skin cell regeneration. Apply shea butter alone (if your skin tolerates it at full strength), or look for it in the top five ingredients in your moisturizer to all dry areas daily. We recommend looking for unrefined shea butter, and love it in spa treatment masks and in daily-use products.
Oatmeal makes a wonderful soothing and hydrating treatment mask, both in the treatment room and at home. Mix two tablespoons of finely powdered or colloidal oatmeal with tablespoon of raw honey and a dash of water, mix them properly, and apply it to the face and neck for up to 15 minutes. Oatmeal contains sticky polysaccharide fibers called beta glucans, which help soothe skin by creating a protective layer on the skin’s surface. Oats also have demulcent and humectant properties, meaning that they draw in water to add a powerful surge of hydration to dry and inflamed skin.
Avocado is a well known go-to natural remedy for dry skin. It contains an excellent balance of healthy fats. Rich in Omega 6-fatty acids, it also contains Omega 3-fatty acids, choline, and other beneficial lipids. Furthermore, it delivers high doses of Vitamins A, C, K and folate; and minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, and calcium–all of which nourish and protect the skin to promote radiance.
Apply a paste of raw avocado to the face and neck alone, or added to any of the other natural dry skin remedies listed here, for 10 to 15 minutes. You’ll be amazed at how quickly your skin will feel soft, soothed, and hydrated after just a few applications.
Cilantro–the leaves of the coriander plant–has some of the most outstanding skin curative properties. Many people with dry skin have a compromised skin barrier. Cilantro contains acid mantle-fortifying minerals such as thiamin, zinc, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and manganese. It also helps feed the skin’s microbiome with natural sugars which function as prebiotics (we offer multiple skin microbiome-enhancing tips in our NAA Membership File Card Library); and contains Vitamins A, C, E, and K; as well as a wide spectrum of B-vitamins such as folate, riboflavin, niacin, pyridoxine, folate, and pantothenic acid. These nutrients support the skin’s wound healing function.
Add a teaspoon of pureed cilantro to one of the natural dry skin remedies listed in this article, and also enjoy it in smoothies, salads, and salsa.
Bananas gives quick relief from dry, itchy skin with its moisturizing and cooling properties. Bananas have a high water content, and their natural starches provide a soothing feel to dry skin. They also nourish the skin by delivering Vitamins B6 and C, as well as biotin, copper, potassium, and manganese to the skin’s barrier to nourish it as it attempts to heal.
Though bananas do have internal health benefits that translate to the skin on the surface, their high content of natural sugars aren’t always a good fit for those with Candida overgrowth or another type of gut dysbiosis. However, these sugars provide excellent food for the skin’s microbiome!
To use banana topically, you can either mash up a raw banana and apply it as a mask, as you would with avocado, or apply the peels as a facial compress.
While turmeric is best known for its ability to help even out skin tone and brighten up hyperpigmentation, it is also highly prized its powerful antioxidants, which soothe the irritation and inflammation that come with dry skin. (Learn our favorite ways to use turmeric topically without staining the skin here.)
One interesting fact about turmeric as it pertains to dry skin is that its most famous phytonutrient–curcumin–has the ability to stimulate our own body’s production of key healthy fats, DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) from ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) which is one of the more abundantly found essential fatty acids in foods. This not only provides nourishment to the skin, but also helps to seal in moisture both at the cellular level and on the surface.
Dry skin can feel prickly, tight, scaly, and constantly irritated. Incorporating the natural dry skin remedies mentioned above on a regular basis can significantly improve the skin’s feel and appearance. If the skin problem is severe, does not respond to natural remedies like these, or gets worse, stop using them and consult with a physician.
About the guest author:
This article was written by the NAA editorial team in collaboration with guest writer, Jennifer D’Souza. Jennifer is a wellness lifestyle writer. She loves sharing her thoughts and personal experiences related to fitness, yoga, and natural remedies.
Photos by unsplash.