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Dry skin is most women's worst nightmare, and it's a huge problem during the winter months. Dry skin results in itchiness, flakiness, dullness, and irritation. We all know that winter weather can zap moisture from your skin, but that's not the only culprit. Here are 10 other reasons why your skin is dry:

hot showers

1. You take hot showers

Hot showers are a big no-no when it comes to keeping your skin silky soft. Warm water strips your skin of its natural oils, leading to dryness. Dermatologists recommend showering using lukewarm or cold water, which preserves your skin's natural oils. Women's Health Magazine recommends limiting your showers to 10 minutes or less.

You are a Swimmer

2. You're a swimmer

While swimming is a fantastic exercise that tones your whole body, the chlorine found in pools wreaks havoc on your skin. Chlorine drys out your skin, causing it to flake. Before diving in, slather on some moisturizer. It'll act as a protective barrier.

Anti-aging products

3. You use anti-aging products

Anti-aging products that contain ingredients such as retinol, glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and benzoyl peroxide might diminish wrinkles, but they also dry out your skin. This is because these ingredients stimulate cell renewal that causes dryness. Rather than using anti-aging products alone, layer them over your favorite moisturizer.

moisturizing frequently enough

4. You're not moisturizing frequently enough

Using the right moisturizer and moisturizing often is half the battle when it comes to tackling dry skin. Apply moisturizer to skin right after you get out of the shower -- this is when your skin has the highest levels of moisture. Choose a moisturizer that contains glycerin and ceramides. Both of these ingredients form a protective layer on the surface of your skin, sealing in its natural moisture.

Using the wrong soap

5. You use the wrong soap

Many commercial body soaps contain harsh detergents and chemicals, leading to dryness and irritation. Instead choose a body soap that's designed for sensitive skin. Common soap brands that won't dry out your skin include Neutrogena Dry Skin Formula, Aveeno Cleansing Bar for Dry Skin, and Oil of Olay Sensitive Skin Soap.

Allergic to your perfume

6. You're allergic to your favorite perfume

The chemical compounds found in some perfumes can irritate and dry out your skin. Choose perfumes that contain moisturizing ingredients, such as honey, or use an oil-based perfume. Whenever possible, use all natural body sprays and perfumes that don't contain alcohol.

Bad Genetics

7. You've got bad genetics

Sometimes skin dryness is inherited. This is especially true if your dry skin doesn't seem to get better with treatment. Combat skin dryness by using moisturizers that are made from ceramides and lipids, which help to protect skin from dryness by forming a protective barrier.

Not Drinking Water

8. You're not drinking enough water

Dehydration dries out your skin, making it look older and less plump. You should drink at least two liters of water a day to achieve glowing, supple skin. Avoid caffeinated beverages and alcohol that act as diuretics, contributing to dehydration.

Humidifier

9. You don't use a humidifier

During the winter, central heating circulates dry, hot air throughout your living space. This leads to dry, cracked skin. However, you can add moisture back into the air by using a humidifier. You'll notice your skin becomes dewier and more hydrated.

Laundry detergent

10. You're using the wrong laundry detergent

Just like scented body soaps can irritate and dry out your skin, so can scented laundry detergents. This can cause skin irritation and dryness. Instead use an all natural laundry detergent that's scent-free. Remember that a little laundry detergent goes a long way, especially with high efficiency washing machines.

Sayonara, dry AF skin

Dry skin is never fun to deal with, especially when you can't figure out the culprit. But restoring moisture to your skin is easy -- it all comes down to is using the right products and avoiding certain things. Follow the above easy tips, and watch your dry, itchy skin transform into silky soft smooth skin.

References
1. "7 Sneaky Reasons Why Your Skin is Dry AF," Women's Health, November 7, 2016.
2. "7 Surprising Causes of Dry Skin," Everyday Health, n.d.
3. "10 Everyday Habits That are Sucking the Hydration Out of Your Skin," Reader's Digest, n.d.

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