Dry, flaky skin that appears on your face can be caused by numerous factors including excessive exposure to cold temperatures, allergic reactions to certain foods or medications, poor diet or simply a genetic predisposition to developing dry skin. If you have only mild symptoms that do not cause any pain or discomfort, you can typically treat the problem at home with lifestyle changes, over-the-counter products and home remedies. If your skin becomes so dry and flaky that it is painful or leads to open wounds, you should consult your doctor immediately for further treatment.
Change Your Skin Care Routine
If you're prone to developing dry, flaky skin patches, using mild facial cleansers, particularly those formulated for sensitive skin, can help. Harsh cleansers, or those that contain additives and chemicals, can irritate the skin and promote drying. Wash your face no more than once daily using a gentle cleanser, such as Eucerin Sensitive Facial Skin Hydrating Cleanser, and follow with a mild moisturizer for the best results. Do not wash your face more than once daily and always use cool water. Hot water dries the skin and can make the condition worse. Also make sure to apply moisturizer to your face immediately after getting out of the shower to stop drying before it begins.
Use the Right Foundation
If you wear makeup, choosing the right foundation for dry, flaky skin is extremely important. Many types of liquid and even mineral makeup can be drying to the skin. For the best results, look for a product that is formulated specifically for dry skin (it should say so on the package), such as Revlon's Age Defying Foundation For Dry Skin. If you can't find a suitable product, at the very least, opt for liquid or cream-based makeup that will help nourish dry, flaky skin instead of making it stand out. Powders and mineral foundations may not be your best bet.
Use Simple Home Remedies
If you need to get rid of dry, flaky skin on your face immediately, there are a few home remedies you can try. For the best results, use these remedies just before cleansing, moisturizing and putting on your makeup if you wear any.
Cool compress – Soak a washcloth in cold water, and then hold it over your face for a few minutes to reduce inflammation, itchiness and dryness.
Humidifier – Run a humidifier in your room while you sleep to prevent drying. A humidifier adds moisture to the air, especially during the winter months when indoor air can be very damaging to the skin.
Oatmeal face scrub – Dampen a handful of oatmeal in cool water and spread the mixture over your face. Allow it to remain for 15 minutes, then rinse with cool water. Oatmeal soothes and moisturizes dry skin, and it also exfoliates to remove excess dead skin cells and reduce flakiness.
Drink Water and Eat Well
In addition to the remedies above, drinking adequate water is important for maintaining the health of your skin. To avoid flaky, dry skin, drink six to eight glasses of water daily and maintain a healthy diet that includes plenty of lean protein, veggies, fruits and healthy fats. A lack of fat in your diet can often cause dry skin. Taking supplements such as flax seed oil or fish oil may improve dry skin. Take these supplements according to the manufacturer's ingredients for the best results.