why it happens and how to prevent it

Post-shower dry skin: what is it about?

There is nothing better than a hot shower to feel good, freshen up and continue the day in the right way. However, it can happen that this ritual leaves the skin dry. Not only can this issue be annoying and aesthetically challenging, but it can lead to more serious problems, particularly if it is accompanied by itching or a rash.

Why does this happen and what can be done to prevent this unpleasant feeling?

How it looks

What does dry skin look like after a shower?

Dry skin after a shower can feel tight and appear rough, patchy, or cracked. Also, dehydrated skin surface shows more lines and, if it is severe, it can flake, itch and crack.

To know more:
Itching after a shower: reasons why it occurs and how to relieve it


Why does my skin feel dry after a shower?

Dryness after a shower is a manifestation that can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, health status or whether or not you take care of your skin.

The exposure toshower water reduces moisture and does not retain sebum and natural moisturizing factors (NMF) from the skin: this can irritate the skin surface, causing dryness.

Clearly, the effect is emphasized if:

  • He often takes a shower
  • Very hot water is used
  • The shower is too long

Post-shower dry skin is often associated with an itchy sensation. To be affected by this combination of symptoms – dry and itchy skin after shower – they are above all feet and legs, as they are particularly exposed to the water from the shower.

Exposure to environmental factors (in winter: lower humidity, indoor heating and hotter and longer baths and showers; in estatesuch as air conditioning, more frequent showers, hot days or sun exposure), excessive washing and aggressive exfoliation can wipe out our sebum, but the body’s production also slows down as we age and it can be compromised by a number of other factors including hormones, medications, smoking, allergies and diet. In addition, some medical conditions can be associated with or can aggravate the feeling of dry skin. For example, you may develop reactions to washing products (soap or other cleaning products), residue from laundry products (from contact with towels, bathrobes, etc.), or to moisturizer or other products after a shower.

Soaps, bubble baths and shower gels can also contribute to dryness due to formulations that do not respect the skin surface or are not very compatible with its characteristics; In general, if you tend to have dry skin after showering, it is best to opt for cleansers that are hypoallergenic and free from irritants.

Other Causes of Dry Skin After Showering

Certain dermatological conditions can lead to dry itchy skin or develop due to it.

In particular, long hot showers can aggravate:

If you suspect your dry skin may be related to an underlying condition, talk to your doctor.

Certain medications can also contribute to post-shower dryness, including statins and diuretics.

Damaged, hypersensitive, and reactive skin is more prone to infection and irritation, so if you notice any signs of a possible skin condition, don’t ignore it and contact your doctor.


If your skin feels tight and dry after a shower, there are some basic principles you can follow to preserve its hydration and reduce the feeling of discomfort.

What to do in case of Dry Skin after a shower

Simple changes can relieve dry skin after a shower:

  • To wash, it is better to use lukewarm rather than boiling water;
  • Limit your time in the shower or bath to 5 or 10 minutes;
  • Wash the skin with a mild, fragrance-free cleanser;
  • Do not abuse soap and detergents: apply enough detergent to remove dirt and excess sebum, avoiding using so much that you see a dense foam;
  • Gently towel dry the skin (patting, not rubbing);
  • Use a fragrance-free moisturizer while the skin is still damp, immediately after drying it: this will allow the product to absorb better and the comfort will last longer (note: moisturizers applied within a few minutes work by trapping the existing moisture in the skin);
  • Prefer more full-bodied formulations such as creams, butters and balms for the body: these products are more hydrating than gels and lotions;
  • Make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day: your skin will also benefit from it;
  • Avoid irritating products: if they sting or burn as soon as you apply it is not a good sign.


What is the skin barrier?

The skin barrier is the outermost tissue layer of the skin, called the stratum corneum. When intact, it forms a sort of airtight seal that protects against damage from irritants and infections. If the skin is dry, it becomes vulnerable and the barrier can be compromised, further contributing to dehydration of the skin on the body.

How to keep skin hydrated (and why it’s important)

Preventing baths and showers from making dry skin worse is importantespecially at certain times of the year, when the humidity decreases or the skin is more prone to dryness.

To help keep your skin healthy and hydrated, pay attention to the following points:

  • Take short showers and use water that is not too hot so as not to damage the skin barrier
  • If possible, do not shower or bathe more than once a day: if your work, exercise or sports routine makes you sweat, you may need to shower daily, but if your activities are more moderate , bathing every other day should be enough and the skin on the body is less likely to lose moisture. Clearly, the exception is valid for the face, intimate area and areas prone to bad odors which must be cleaned with specifically formulated cleansers (for example: micellar water or facial cleansing milk, intimate cleanser for the external genitalia, etc.)
  • Use fragrance-free and hypoallergenic products (fragrances are a common trigger for itching and dryness)
  • Avoid applying skin products containing retinoids and alpha hydroxy acids
  • Always treat your skin gently: pat your skin dry with a soft towel; do not use cloths or wipes that are too rough or exfoliating
  • After the shower, opt for products containing functional ingredients capable of repairing and strengthening the skin barrier, such as: ceramides, peptides, glycerin, hyaluronic acid, lanolin, jojoba oil, shea butter, lactic acid.

Dry skin after a shower: which ingredients to avoid

Dryness after the shower? Avoid using skin care products that contain one or more of the following:

  • Alcohol
  • Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs)
  • fragrances
  • Retinoids

Avoiding these ingredients will help your skin retain its natural moisture.

Why is my skin dry even after applying moisturizer?

If, despite applying a moisturizer, your skin still remains dry, you may be dehydrated: in this case, you can try drinking more water during the day. Also, apply a moisturizer when your skin is warm and moist, right after you shower, so it absorbs better.

If these changes do not bring relief, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist.

When to worry

Dry skin after a shower: when to worry?

If the dryness causes discomfort, is associated with itching or if the skin develops a rash or peels, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist to establish what the exact causes are and what is the best approach to the problem.

Very dry skin can, in fact, be a sign of a dermatological condition that needs treatment and can, in fact, require the prescription of medicines. A dermatologist can examine your skin and explain what can help reduce discomfort.

Reasons why skin can feel dry even after hydration

When your skin feels dry even after hydrating, it’s time to look at the full picture of what’s affecting it, such as:

  • Your habits (washing too often, taking long showers, using the wrong products)
  • Environment (dry climate, air conditioning, hard water)
  • Health status (medical conditions, drugs, malnutrition)
  • Individual aspects (age, genetics, skin type)

To recap: 3 things to know about Dry Skin after a shower

  • Dry skin after a shower is a sign that your skin needs more hydration.
  • Changing your routine in the shower doesn’t mean giving up a special pleasure, but it can increase skin comfort; preventing dryness is possible with a few simple precautions: 1) avoid excessively long and hot showers, 2) use hypoallergenic cleansers and moisturizers and free of potentially irritating ingredients or ingredients not suitable for your skin type and 3) always treat your skin gently.
  • If a rash develops or the itching becomes unbearable, consult a dermatologist immediately.

Source: www.my-personaltrainer.it

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