Ready to say goodbye to the dry spots that keep popping up? This easy and effective skincare routine for dry skin can help you stay moisturized.

right mark

Copied to Clipboard

wrong mark

An Easy And Effective Skincare Routine For Dry Skin

09/06/20238 min read

If you struggle with dry skin, you know how difficult it can be to manage. Nobody wants to walk around with dry, cracked skin all the time! Fortunately, an easy skincare routine for dry skin can help you repair the damage and maintain glowing, soft skin.

These simple steps may help you combat dry skin and keep it at bay.

Table Of Contents

Why Is My Skin Dry?

Woman in need of a skincare routine for dry skin

Before tackling your dry skin, it's essential to know why it's dry in the first place. While several factors can play a role, below are a few of the most common.

Genetic Disposition

Unfortunately, some of us are just predisposed to having dry skin. If your family has a history of this condition, then there's a chance you may be dealing with the same thing.

If you notice that your skin just doesn't lock in moisture like other people's, it could be a sign that your genes are playing a part. While there's nothing you can do to alter your genetic makeup, you can still take steps to manage your dry skin.

Irritant Exposure

If your skin comes in contact with something irritating, like a chemical or even an allergen, it could lead to a dry and uncomfortable feeling. If you've noticed that feeling regularly, you may be sensitive to certain things.

Journaling can help you pinpoint the particular irritant that's causing you trouble. Keep track of your skin’s condition over time as you document your daily activities, and note which products you use. This can help you look for patterns.

A doctor can also assist with this, especially if you have underlying allergies causing your skin to become dry.

To help you begin the process of identifying your triggers, here are some common irritants that can dry skin out:

  • Chlorinated water in a pool
  • Smoke
  • Synthetic material, like polyester
  • Harsh laundry detergents
  • Hard water

By avoiding the irritants that bother you, you’ll keep your skin looking and feeling softer.

Harsh Environment

What's the climate like where you live? Environmental factors could affect your skin if you reside in a place with extremely cold or dry weather.

Low humidity levels combined with extreme temperatures in either direction can impact your skin's natural moisture barrier, resulting in dry patches. Running a humidifier in your home and taking extra steps to protect your skin when outside can make a difference.


Certain classes of drugs, such as diuretics, statins, and some acne treatments, can cause your skin to dry out. Check with your doctor if you think your prescriptions are the issue.

Your Age

An older woman resting her head in her hand

As you age, your skin's ability to produce natural oils decreases, leading to dryness. In addition, hormonal changes during menopause can result in dry skin.

Without a good skincare routine, you may find it harder to keep your skin moisturized as you grow older.


People with eczema often have itchy, dry skin. It’s one of the most common symptoms of this skin condition.

If you notice that your dry patches come and go, you could be experiencing eczema flare-ups. However, since the symptoms overlap, it can be hard to distinguish between regular dry skin and eczema.

A visit with your dermatologist can help you understand what’s causing your skin to become so dehydrated.

Dry Skin Symptoms

The most common symptom of dry skin is an itchy feeling followed by flaking, scaling, and cracking. You may also notice rough patches or redness in the areas where you experience dryness.

These symptoms may always be present, or they may come and go depending on the cause.

Where You’ll Notice Dry Skin

You can experience dry skin all over your body, but some places may be more prone to this condition. These include your:

The good news is that no matter where you're experiencing dry skin, the skincare routine for dry skin outlined below can help you manage it.

An Effective Skincare Routine For Dry Skin

If you're ready to fight back against your dry skin, here are six things you need to do daily.

1) Wash Your Face (With The Right Products)

Woman washing her face

Though too much (hot) water can dry out your skin, keeping it clean is vital. So take time to give your face a gentle wash twice a day.

Your evening wash is especially crucial, as it removes the dirt and sweat collected on your skin throughout the day, along with any makeup or other products. This allows your skin to rest and rejuvenate all night long.

When cleansing, make sure to use skincare products designed for dry skin, as harsher cleansers can strip away necessary moisture. Look for formulas containing hydrating ingredients, like niacinamide and guar bean extract, to help improve your skin's condition.

Also, don't scrub too hard or use too much friction. Being rough can damage your skin's protective layer, making you more prone to dryness.

2) Add A Toner

Toners help remove any leftover impurities from cleansing and restore your skin's pH balance. But, as with any skincare product, too much of a good thing can be detrimental.

Don't overuse your toner, or you may find yourself with flaky, dry skin that’s worse than before. While many toners call for use twice a day, this might be too much for your dry skin. Start by using it once a day, and keep an eye on how your skin responds.

Additionally, always read the product instructions and use as directed. Otherwise, you may end up applying too much at a time.

Finally, ensure the toner you select is a good fit for dry skin. You’ll want to find one that’s alcohol-free and contains hydrating ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid or vitamin E.

3) Lock In Moisture

One of the best ways to combat dry skin is to keep your skin moisturized. You can use a moisturizing cream, lotion, or oil to accomplish this. Pick one that's made for your skin type and has natural ingredients, like shea butter and almond oil, to help lock in moisture.

Apply the product right after you wash when your skin is still damp. This timing will help seal in the water and keep your skin hydrated for longer.

In addition to a moisturizer, apply lip balm regularly. You want to keep your lips moist so they don’t dry out and crack.

You'll also need to pay attention to your hydration levels. If you're not drinking enough water, your skin won't be able to keep up with all the moisture it needs, leading to dryness.

4) Be Sun Smart

Woman applying sunscreen as part of her skincare routine for dry skin

When it comes to skin care, the sun is an often-neglected part of the equation. Unfortunately, the sun’s damaging UV rays can rob your skin of natural oils, leading to further dryness and irritation.

To better keep your skin moist and protect it from harm, don’t skimp on sunscreen. Instead, look for one with gentle ingredients. Some sunscreen products are specially formulated for people with dry skin. Give one of these a try to see how your body reacts.

Once you find a good sunscreen, apply it regularly. Anytime you're going to be outside for more than 20 minutes, don't forget to slather it on. And if you're swimming, make sure to reapply every two hours.

If the sun is especially harsh, consider wearing a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses to protect your face, neck, and eyes. Lightweight, long-sleeved shirts are also a great way to guard your skin against the sun's rays.

5) Avoid Irritants

If you know that something dries out your skin, try to avoid it. This means staying away from skincare products containing harsh ingredients, as well as activities like taking hot showers or long baths.

You may also need to watch out for specific fabrics. Synthetic materials like polyester, nylon, and rayon tend to trap heat and pull away moisture. Instead of those, wear loose-fitting clothes made of cotton or other natural fibers that allow your skin to breathe.

In addition, be cautious when cleaning. Many household cleaners contain ingredients that can dry your skin out, so stick with natural alternatives, like vinegar or baking soda, when possible. If you need to use a harsh chemical, wear gloves and wash your hands when you’re finished.

6) Be Consistent With Your Skincare Routine For Dry Skin

Dry skin isn't something that goes away overnight. To keep it in check, you'll need to establish a skincare routine and stick with it.

The steps above will help you manage your dry skin when done consistently. So don’t try it for a week or two and then give up. Instead, do it day after day, week after week. You will see results if you remember that patience is key!

Weekly Skincare Routine To Hydrate Skin

While a daily skincare routine is essential for managing dry skin, incorporating weekly practices is also beneficial. These tasks can help revitalize your skin, delivering intense hydration and shedding off dead skin cells.

Each week, treat your skin to these two things.

Try A Hydrating Face Mask

Honey and olive oil face wash as part of a skincare routine for dry skin

Slathering on a moisturizing face mask once a week can help restore moisture and soothe your skin. You can purchase a ready-to-use product or make one on your own.

If you buy a mask, look for one that contains hydrating ingredients, like hyaluronic acid or colloidal oatmeal. Once you find one, follow the directions when using it to avoid leaving it on for too long.

If you prefer to make your own face mask, here’s one with only two ingredients: olive oil and honey.

Mix two tablespoons of honey with one tablespoon of high-quality olive oil in a small bowl. Once thoroughly combined, put it in the microwave for about 20 seconds.

Note: You want it to be warm, not hot. After 20 seconds, test a small amount on your wrist to make sure it’s the right temperature.

When your mask is ready, apply it to your face and let it sit for five minutes. Then, rinse it off with cold water. Finally, dry with a soft towel.

And, of course, you should apply moisturizer every time you wash your face.

Take An Oatmeal Bath

People have used colloidal oatmeal for centuries to improve their skin. It attracts water, which can help hydrate your skin. This ingredient also strengthens your skin’s barrier.

While you can buy colloidal oatmeal ready to use, making your own from a pantry staple is simple. Use a food processor or a blender to grind old-fashioned oats into a fine powder.

Then, add a cup of this powder to your tub and soak for a few minutes before rinsing off. Be sure to get all the oat particles off your skin. Otherwise, they could irritate you.

Practice Gentle Exfoliation

Over time, dead skin cells can build up and leave your skin dull and dry. To help your skin glow, exfoliate once a week.

While you can mechanically exfoliate, that process isn’t recommended for dry skin. When you rub or brush your skin, it can cause even more drying. That’s because the rough texture creates micro-tears. These tears weaken your skin’s natural barrier, making it prone to dryness.

Instead, choose a mild chemical exfoliation product. Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), such as glycolic or citric acid, help your body shed dead skin cells naturally.

However, you’ll want to read the bottle carefully and use it as directed. Chemicals can damage your skin when not used correctly.

Other Skincare Tips For Dry Skin

Once the above skincare routines for dry skin become a habit, you can implement different strategies to help keep your skin moisturized. Let’s take a look.

Read The Labels

When dealing with dry skin, you don’t want anything harsh to damage your skin’s natural barrier. Using the wrong types of products could dry your skin out even more.

To prevent further problems, read the labels on everything you use so you can avoid irritants and focus on using hydrating products.

Treat Underlying Skin Conditions

Woman with Bodewell Eczema Daily Calming Cream

If a skin condition like psoriasis or eczema contributes to your dry skin, work with your doctor to develop a treatment plan. You’ll also want to use specialized products designed with your skin in mind, such as Bodewell Eczema Daily Calming Cream.

It provides deep hydration without leaving your skin greasy. And since it’s steroid-free, it can be used daily, making it a great addition to your skincare routine.

Have A Plan When You’re Out

Taking care of your skin at home is one thing. Doing it when you’re out and about is another. If you don’t make a plan, you won’t be able to control what products you use.

For example, you don’t get to pick what soap the grocery store puts inside its bathroom. So it’s up to you to bring your skincare essentials along. Stick a small bottle of your favorite moisturizer in your purse and use it faithfully every time you finish washing your hands.

At first, doing this may feel strange, but once you get used to it, your skin will thank you.

Change Your Pillowcase

What type of fabric are you resting your head on each night? If you answered cotton, it might be time to invest in a new pillowcase.

Cotton fibers can create friction as your face rubs against them. This process removes moisture, which can lead to dry skin over time.

It’s best to use a silk or satin pillowcase, as these materials are less likely to irritate delicate skin. In addition, they absorb less moisture, so your skin stays better hydrated at night.

No matter what your linens are made out of, regularly wash them so you won’t be sleeping on built-up dirt and bacteria.

Reduce Your Stress

There’s a scientific link between your stress levels and the condition of your skin. When your stress levels get high enough, you may notice your skin drying out further.

Stress can cause your skin’s natural barrier to weaken and crack, which interferes with its ability to retain moisture. To prevent this damage, be intentional about reducing stress in your life.

Here are some simple ways to do that:

  • Journal to clear your mind
  • Try meditation or prayer
  • Do some breathing exercises
  • Take a walk in nature and breathe fresh air
  • Get a massage
  • Use a diffuser with essential oils for aromatherapy

The key is to find something that relaxes you. Then, do it regularly. Schedule this time to destress on your calendar so you don’t let life get in the way.

Take Shorter, Cooler Baths

As we mentioned above, extended exposure to hot water can dry out your skin. Limit yourself to five or 10 minutes in the tub.

You’ll also want to use cooler water temperatures. If your skin turns red while you’re bathing, it’s too hot. Think tepid, not boiling.

Use A Humidifier

Couple sleeping with a humidifier nearby

Your body needs moisture to thrive. If the air in your home is too dry, add moisture to it by using a humidifier. Ideally, your home humidity levels should be between 30-50%.

Indoor humidity typically drops in the fall, when the air outside is colder and you’re starting to run your heating system. However, dry air can happen during any season, so keep an eye on humidity levels year-round.

Try Wet Wrap Therapy

Wet wrap therapy is a promising treatment for dry skin, especially for eczema flare-ups. It involves wrapping the affected area with a damp layer of soft cloth. Cloth bandages or gauze work well, as do strips of cloth cut from old clothes.

Once the wet layer is on, it’s time for the dry one. Simply add a dry layer of wraps to the top of the wet ones.

Leave your wraps on for several hours or overnight. When the time is up, carefully remove them.

Know When To Visit A Doctor

While home care can help alleviate many causes of dry skin, it’s not always enough. If your dry skin persists even after intentional treatment, it’s time to seek professional help.

You’ll also want to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist if you notice any of these symptoms:

  • Intense itching that lasts for days
  • Skin that hurts to touch
  • Cracked, bleeding areas
  • Lack of sleep because you’re so uncomfortable

A dermatologist can examine your dry patches and discuss your other symptoms to see if there’s an underlying problem. Once they finish their examination, your doctor can help you develop a customized treatment plan to get your skin feeling better.

Dry Skin Be Gone!

Woman with dry skin looking in mirror

Dry skin doesn't have to stand in the way of having soft, glowing skin. With the right skincare routine for dry skin and some patience, you’ll soon notice an improvement in your skin's appearance.

At Bodewell, we’re here to support you along your skincare journey. Whether you’re dealing with dry skin, eczema, psoriasis, or another skin condition, you deserve to have better skin days!


American Skin Association
National Eczema Association
Pinnacle ENT
XCode Life

Shop Bodewell