Looking for natural ways to relieve dry and itchy skin can be a great option if you’re tired of dealing with this frustrating and uncomfortable problem. Particularly during the winter months, when the air is dry and cold, many people experience this condition. Luckily, you don’t have to resort to harsh chemicals or prescription medication to find relief.
This article explores various home remedies for dry skin, examining the scientific evidence supporting each method. When dealing with dry skin, whether it’s due to aging, an underlying skin condition, or environmental factors, it can be uncomfortable and itchy. Fortunately, there are natural ways to relieve dry and itchy skin from the comfort of your home.
Dry skin, scientifically known as xerosis, occurs when the outer layer of skin lacks moisture. If left untreated, it can lead to cracking and infections. While keeping dry skin moisturized is crucial, some store-bought treatments can be costly and ineffective. So, which natural remedies are the most effective?
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Here are the natural ways to relieve dry and itchy skin:
If you’re looking for natural ways to relieve dry skin, there are several remedies that can help. These treatments can be used as moisturizers, unless otherwise specified. To get the most out of your moisturizer, it’s best to apply it generously to damp skin after taking a bath and allow it to absorb. Here are some of the most effective natural ways to relieve dry and itchy skin:
1. Coconut oil
Coconut oil is a natural oil that is effective in treating dry skin. According to a study conducted in 2014, coconut oil is as safe and efficient as petroleum jelly in treating dry skin. The study found that coconut oil significantly enhances skin hydration and boosts the number of lipids or fats on the skin’s surface. Another research conducted in 2016 notes that coconut oil contains saturated fatty acids that function as emollients, filling in gaps in dry skin and rendering it smooth.
2. Sunflower seed oil
According to a study conducted in 2013, applying sunflower seed oil as a moisturizer on the arms of participants improved hydration levels. However, the same study found that olive oil had adverse effects on the skin’s barrier, indicating that not all natural oils are suitable for use as moisturizers.
3. Drinking milk
Although applying milk topically may not provide relief from dry skin, a 2015 study suggests that including it in one’s diet could improve dry skin. The study found that mice with improved skin barrier consumed a diet enriched with a particular fat, phospholipid, found in milk. Further research is necessary to determine whether consuming milk has a similar impact on skin in humans.
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4. Oatmeal bath
Oatmeal is a natural ingredient that can effectively treat dry skin. Incorporating powdered oatmeal into a bath or using creams containing oatmeal may alleviate dry skin symptoms. According to a 2015 study, oatmeal extracts possess anti-inflammatory and antioxidant characteristics, indicating its potential in treating dry skin.
5. Aloe vera
According to a 2003 study from a trusted source, aloe vera gel has the potential to alleviate dry skin. To treat dry skin on the hands or feet, one can apply aloe vera gel and then cover the affected area with a glove or sock, preferably before bedtime and leave the gel on overnight. For other areas of the body with dry skin, generously applying aloe vera gel and allowing it to absorb may have a similar effect.
As stated in a 2012 research review from a trusted source, honey has been found to be advantageous in the treatment of several skin conditions, according to certain studies. Specifically, honey has demonstrated properties such as moisturization, wound healing, and anti-inflammatory effects. Therefore, honey is a favorable and natural option for alleviating dry skin, as it can be directly applied to the skin.
7. Petroleum jelly
For years, petroleum jelly, also referred to as mineral oil, has been utilized as a moisturizer. In 2017, researchers discovered from a trusted source that the utilization of petroleum jelly enhanced the skin barrier in older individuals. This discovery reinforces the efficacy of petroleum jelly as a remedy for dry skin, particularly when it is caused by the aging process.
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When You Need to See a Doctor
If dry skin is not caused by environmental factors or aging, it could be due to an underlying skin condition. In such a case, individuals should consult a doctor. If dry skin symptoms persist despite using home remedies or store-bought moisturizers, they can consider discussing over-the-counter treatments with a pharmacist.
Moisturizing the skin and promptly addressing dry skin is crucial. Neglecting dry skin may cause bleeding, red patches, or even a bacterial infection. If the skin shows signs of bacterial infection such as redness, pus, or swelling, it is important to seek medical attention immediately.
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Natural remedies can be effective in relieving dry and itchy skin without the use of harsh chemicals or prescription medication. Coconut oil, sunflower seed oil, milk, oatmeal, aloe vera, honey, and petroleum jelly are some of the most effective natural ways to relieve dry and itchy skin.
It is essential to keep the skin moisturized to prevent cracking and infections, particularly during the winter months when the air is dry and cold. However, if the symptoms persist despite using home remedies or store-bought moisturizers, it is crucial to seek medical attention immediately. By incorporating natural remedies into your skincare routine, you can keep your skin healthy, hydrated, and itch-free.