5 Natural Exfoliants for Dry Skin- Holiday Edition

Cold weather has arrived and that can often lead us to experience dry, flaky, and itchy skin.  You can combat the effects of winter with simple exfoliants found right in your kitchen!

Dry skin can occur for several reasons and often becomes most prevalent during the summer and winter months where the air is most dry.  Removing dead skin cells helps to relieve the appearance of dry skin, encourage new cell production, as well as, prime the skin for moisturizers which help lock in moisture.

Try these simple exfoliants, that are typically found in your kitchen, the next time you experience dry skin on your hands, arms or legs.

Make a Peppermint Coffee Scrub.  Coffee is an excellent exfoliant for dry skin.  You can use fresh coffee grounds or used coffee grounds.  Add a few drops of peppermint extract for a festive scent! If you want more of a paste consistency, mix in a tablespoon of warmed coconut oil and 2 tablespoons of hot water.

Baking Soda.  There is nothing easier than mixing baking soda and water to make an exfoliant.  Baking soda is great for sensitive skin and delicate areas such as your face and neck.  Simply mix water into a handful of baking soda to make a paste consistency. Apply with circular motions and rinse off with warm water.

Take a Milk Bath.  Milk contains lactic acid which acts as an exfoliant and may also increase your skin’s ability to hold in moisture.  If one specific area is dry, soak a washcloth in cold milk and place the washcloth on the dry area for five minutes. Gently wash off the milk to allow for some of the lactic acid to remain behind.  If you are feeling dry all over, add a quart of milk to your bath. For additional benefits, you could even add a few tablespoons of honey or oatmeal to the water. Don’t have milk, try plain yogurt- though we don’t recommend using it in your bath.

Take a Salt Bath. Yes, you heard that right. Add two cups of Epsom salt to your warm bath and soak.  Take a small handful of additional Epsom salt and use it to scrub the areas of skin that are dry.  For a softening effect, add dried seaweed to your bath.

Make a Sugar Scrub. Perfect for showers, a sugar scrub can be applied quickly to your legs, arms, and belly.  Take a cup of sugar and mix in a ¼ cup of coconut oil.  Add your favorite essence if you’d like (such as a combination of vanilla, orange, and peppermint).  Apply the scrub to your skin in a circular motion and rinse off with warm water.

Immediately after exfoliating your skin, be sure to apply your favorite moisturizer.  Coconut oil with lavender and orange essence is a lovely combination but do note that it can leave the skin feeling a tad bit greasy.

If you are not seeing relief in your dry skin after a week or two of self-care, you may need to see a doctor.  Chronic dry skin can be a sign of something more serious.

Happy exfoliating!

*If you are a diabetic, please consult with your doctor prior to using at-home remedies for your dry skin.

If you are not finding relief for your dry skin, please call Dr. Hollander at (707) 578-1222 to schedule an appointment today.