Y’know those questions that bother you perpetually, like, shouldn’t V8 really be called V7F1 ‘cause tomato is considered as a fruit and not as a vegetable? Or, how is Bear Grylls from Discovery Channel’s Man vs. Wild still in one piece?! Seriously! Anyways, I digress. My latest question is this: What in the world are these flaky, scaly patches of skin on my face? Thankfully, working at a pharmacy allowed me to answer this question easily: Xerosis…dry skin! A simple and common problem. Happy that I wasn’t dying from lizarditis, I set out to discover more about Xerosis and how to prevent it. Winter is when Xerosis comes out to fight, and it fights hard. Being out in harsh winds and cold air, then moving to rooms with forced air conditions -- made by cranking up the AC or heater -- causes the sebaceous glands in our skin to go all out of whack. When our sebum production levels drop, the result is dry, scaly skin that may even shrivel and crack. Still, I’ve weathered many a winter and was confused as to why this was the first I was seeing Xerosis. There can actually be several factors, including hormonal changes that causes your skin to be more sensitive or even age (how embarrassing, I’m only 19!).
There are a few ways to keep Xerosis at bay. One includes using a good exfoliator and then following that up with a THICK moisturizer. I stress using a good exfoliator because it is SO important to. Cheap exfoliators with big grains can tear at your skin and cause more harm than good. Also, exfoliating incorrectly can be dangerous. When you exfoliate you take off the dead skin, and if you over-exfoliate it can cause tiny microscopic scratches in your skin in which bacteria collect and essentially cause acne. It also causes your capillaries to break which is not the most attractive look. Lastly, it can create OPPOSITE effect of dryness. When you exfoliate, you strip your skin of its sebum which the brain senses and tells the sebaceous glands to get working and to produce more. (*snap**snap*!) This is fantastic, but if you exfoliate too often it will cause your skin to become oily (along with irritated…bad combo!). So, guys and gals, stick to exfoliating TWICE a week at the very most. For those other 5 or 6 days pre-moisturizing, use a cleanser in place of an exfoliator. Thompson Chemists has recently come into possession of a spankin’ brand new cosmetic line imported from all the way from Israel: Lavido. Having met its creator, Ido Magal, I have a newfound respect for his company and will be using products from the line to combat my unfortunate case of Xerosis. And so, dear reader, I will report back to you with my opinions! Until then, stay warm -- only 50 more days of winter left!