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8 tips to avoid dry skin this Christmas

Christmas is definitely in the cold December air, but water isn't, and this may cause problems for our skin.
The holiday season here in the country may not be characterized by freezing temperatures, but the cold, less humid weather is sucking moisture from our skin, causing it to be cracked and dry.

Dermatologist Diane Chan, fellow of the Philippine Association of Primary Skin Care Health Physicians Inc., noted that common skin problems in the Philippines during the 'ber months include ashy legs, chapped lips, and cracked hands and feet, which, if not treated, may lead to complications.

"When the skin gets dry, it gets itchy, then we scratch it. That's when irritation happens. It's itch-scratch-itch-rash. Then the skin thickens," Chan said in an interview at Mornings@ANC.

She added, "It's really more on less humidity, not cold temperature. There's a shortage of water in the air, so the air is dry."

Chan gave these 8 tips to make your skin good this Christmas despite the cold, dry air:

1. Continue to use sunscreen with SPF 15 of better, even if it's cloudy outside. Apply sunblock 30 minutes prior to exposure to the sun, and re-apply after 2 to 3 hours.
2. Use an unscented mild cleanser as opposed to soap, which can strip your skin of the essential oils it needs.
3. Continue to drink lots of water (6 to 8 glasses a day) to provide the necessary hydration for your skin.
4. Avoid products with high alcohol content as well as heavy perfumes. These can irritate your sensitive, dry skin.
5. Use a thicker, richer moisturizer 2 to 3 times a day.
6. Gently exfoliate your skin to remove the dead surface skin cells that can form due to excessive dryness.
7. Use a soothing lip balm or moisturizing lipstick, preferably with sunscreen, to treat chapped lips.
8. Try to keep an anti-itch cream on hand to apply to excessively dry patches.

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