The main cause of dry skin is the gaps which open up between the skin cells when they are not sufficiently plumped up with water. Moisture is then lost from the deeper layers of the skin, allowing bacteria or irritants to pass through more easily. If your skin is particularly dry it might crack or peel and then become inflamed or irritated. This is more likely to occur on the hands and feet, which we tend not to moisturize as frequently. Your skin might become slightly rough and itchy.
Inflamed or cracked may be the first sign of dermatitis.
Adequately moisturising your skin on a regular basis is the first step to managing dry skin. Using products which contain natural plant oils is a great way to increase the moisture levels in your skin
Oils are emollients, which mean they soften or soothe the skin, helping it to keep skin moist and flexible. Oils help produce a layer over the skin’s surface which traps water beneath it.
Oils can also help soothe the inflammation and irritation normally associated with dry skin. They create a protective layer which helps to reduce the penetration of irritants, allergens and bacteria, and so helping to prevent the development of dermatitis.
Natural oils also make the skin look more hydrated and less wrinkled. Because they are plant based they contain beneficial compounds such as polyphenols, phytosterols and carotenoids ( we’ll be explaining more about these compounds in a future blog, so keep reading).These compounds are metabolised by the skin and provide antioxidant properties which can help reduce those signs of aging.
So which natural oils should you be looking out for? At Mary Elizabeth we have a few favourites which we include in our products
Oils that are denser and have a high viscosity which typically penetrate a bit slower into the top layers of the skin such as Avocado Oil (Persea Gratissima) and Meadowfoam Oil (Limnanthes Alba) .We use these in lovely oils in all our products
Oils that offer natural anti-inflammatory properties , for example Jojoba Oil (Buxus Chinensis) and Hemp Seed Oil (Cannabis Sativa). Hemp oil is also great for nails which is another reason its in our multi award winning Spearmint and Tea Tree Nurture Balm
Oils that have been infused with anti-inflammatory herbs oils (generally called ‘macerated’ oils) such as Calendula Oil (Calendula Officinalis) and Chamomile Oil (Anthemis Noblis) both of which we’ve included in our Juniper and Jojoba Hand Cream
All of these oils can be used as facial oils. Use a few drops and massage them into your delicate facial skin after your normal evening cleansing and moisturising routine. You may want to try different oil blends until you find one that works best for your skin.
Oils really are natures defence against dry skin
Cecilia and Claire x