Flaking skin can be an unsightly and annoying problem, especially during the dry, cold winter months. It is one of the most noticeable symptoms of dry skin, but it's usually a temporary problem that can be corrected with home remedies or, in more severe cases, medical treatment. Always consult your doctor before using home remedies, especially if you have a skin disorder or other medical condition.
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Dry, flaking facial skin can be caused by several factors. In addition to cold weather conditions, dry skin may be caused or exacerbated by genetic factors, bathing with water that is too hot, overexposure to the sun, using harsh soaps and other cosmetic treatments on your skin, or illnesses such as thyroid disorders, according to MayoClinic.com.
The first step toward easing flaky skin is to eliminate or effectively deal with the underlying causes. During the cold winter months, use a humidifier to add moisture to the air and hydrate your skin. Avoid harsh soaps and add moisturizing facial washes to your daily skin-care routine.
Exfoliation involves using gentle, natural materials to lightly scrub away the top layers of your skin. This can help to remove flaking, dead skin from the face. Home exfoliators include loofah sponges and facial brushes made of natural bristles, according to Mary El-Baz in her book, "Building a Healthy Lifestyle." Add moisturizing facial cleanser to an exfoliating tool and gently scrub for a few minutes to cleanse your face while removing dead, flaking skin.
Make your own facial moisturizer by combining 1/2 cup of mayonnaise, the juice of one lemon and one tablespoon of melted butter. Apply this mixture, from a recipe in "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Household Solutions," to the affected areas of your face to alleviate dry, flaking skin and leave your skin feeling soft. Or use aloe vera gel as a simple home remedy for dry skin. Snip the end of an aloe vera leaf and squeeze out the gel. Apply to dry skin as needed.
Homemade facial masks are another helpful way to remove dead, flaking skin and add moisture to dry, parched facial skin, according to "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Household Solutions." Combine instant dry milk, cucumber and plain yogurt as a facial mask to moisturize your face, smooth your complexion and give you glowing skin. Or mix an egg yolk with two to three teaspoons of olive oil and apply to clean, dry skin. Leave on for 15 minutes and follow up with your usual cleanser to remove any residue.