Tips to avoid dry skin in the winter

Harsh Michigan winters can leave many residents with uncomfortably dry skin. Dr. Steven Daveluy, a dermatologist with Wayne State University Physician Group in Dearborn, offers a few tips for effective winter skin care.

“The humidity in the air of homes decreases as residents use heat, which draws moisture from the surface of the skin,” Daveluy said. “Many people will notice their skin becomes drier and hands may become dry, itchy or cracked during wintertime.”

Daveluy offers tips to help combat dry skin during the winter:

• Shower or bathe in warm water, not too hot or too cold.

• After bathing, gently pat yourself dry and apply moisturizers.

• Apply moisturizers frequently and choose those with little fragrance, which can irritate the skin.

• Use a humidifier in your home to help raise the humidity level.

• Apply moisturizer as frequently as possible between hand washes.

• Cover skin when going outside to protect it from the cold wind.

• Remember to apply sunscreen if you’re going to be outside, especially during winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding.

• Be cautious when temperatures dip below 28 degrees Fahrenheit, when frostbite can occur. Areas affected by frostbite are usually fingers, toes, ears and the nose. Proper winter clothing is the best way to protect these areas.