Healing dry winter skin

CREATED Feb 6, 2014

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MILWAUKEE - The extreme cold and dry winter air can be brutal on your skin.

"In this climate it's a huge struggle," said Dr. Evonne Winston, a dermatologist with Columbia St. Mary's in Milwaukee.
 
And it's not just a problem that affects people with existing skin conditions.
 
"You know, you talk about this extreme cold and people being indoors with heat going all the time.  It's a huge problem, not just for people with skin disease, sensitive skin, and eczema, but really for everybody." 
 
But the good news is there are several things you can do to soothe dry skin.  
 
"Running a humidifier in your bedroom or in the room you spend most of the time in at your house, or even in your office, can go a long way in making you more comfortable."
 
There are a variety of over-the-counter products that can also help.  Moisturizers that restore the skin's barrier work best.  
 
In addition, you should avoid products that contain fragrances.  Even if scented products work well in the summer, they may irritate your skin during the winter.   
 
"No deodorant soaps, no fragranced body washes, but just very bland fragrance-free soaps, and the minute you get out of the shower, when your skin is still damp, apply a barrier restore product," recommended Dr. Winston.