Our skin is one of our most important organs. Being the largest organ of our body it makes up almost a sixth of our body weight. When we are young we don’t give our skin much thought or even any though at all. I remember my mother always telling myself and my brother to put on sunscreen ( especially in the summer time ). We would always roll our eyes, huff and puff and have a million reasons why we don’t need to put it on. My favorite excuse was ” it’s going to interfere with my tan mom “. Never the less, we did’not apply sunscreen as often as we should have those days. And hardly bothered with applying moisturizer.
Now that I am older ( and wiser ) and I suppose having children of my own, I sound just like my mother when it comes to sunscreen and moisturizer. I have become more aware of my skin in a whole ( not just my face ), slowly seeing the signs of years of sun damage and foolishness. I take much better care of my skin now ( not just when I’m in the sun ) feeding it from the inside as well as insuring I apply a good natural moisturizer. As I have become a little older and speaking to many others my age and older, one thing is very clear. Most peoples’ skin are more prone to become dryer rather than oily. So, what is the best natural moisturizer for dry skin ?
Understanding our Skin
Let quickly look at understanding our skin a little and why it becomes so dry. I’ll break this down, without going into much detail.
Our skin is made up of many layers. The top layer or the outermost layer is called the Epidermis (this we can see and touch ). The epidermis is made up of 5 sub-layers. These sup-layers undergo series of changes ( keratinisation ) as they mature and plays a vital role in protecting us form toxins, bacteria and loss of fluids.
One particular sup-layer of the epidermis is the Horny layer ( or startum corneum ). This layer is the most outer layer of the epidermis. This layer contains the dead skin cells, our sweat glands and sebaceous ( oil ) glands. The cells in the Horny layer bind together by epidermal lipids ( fat ). When these lipids are missing your skin will become dry, tight, rough and could even crack. This can be due to harsh chemicals, drinking too little water, eating incorrectly, medications and sunbathing.
The epidermis in a whole is estimated to be around 0.1mm think, even slightly thinner around the eyes ( 0.05mm ) and thicker around our feet ( 1 – 5mm ). So with such an extremely thin layer of skin that has to play such an important role to keep us healthy, it is no surprise that our skin can dry out in no time.
The two Natural moisturizing options I mention below, you may want to give a try. I must say I can’t live without them.
When looking at the option of buying coconut oil the type and quality makes the difference. To skip trough all the “fancy” words they like to put on labels, there are really only two things you need to look out for when it comes to coconut oil. Refined or Unrefined ( Virgin ).
Refined coconut oil is made from dried coconut meat, steam-refined and could contain chemicals, additives or hexane. If it is refined and organically certified it should contain NO chemicals, additives or hexane. It is normally yellow in color but if it is white it had gone trough a bleaching process. Making it not so great to use in my opinion.
Unrefined or Virgin coconut oil is made from fresh coconut meat, scooped out of the shell by hand, cold pressed, then leaving just the oil and the pure coconut flavor and smell. It is naturally white in color, as you would expect. Always make sure it is certified organic and verified Non-GMO. This would be the best one to use, for both body and in food.
Use it from top to toe. It is safe even for sensitive skin, fast absorbing, water-soluble ( so if it gets on your clothes or bedding it washes out ), multi-healing, super moisturizing and anti-aging. Coconut oil is safe to use on babies and children. You can really use as much coconut oil as you feel you need.
For cracked hands or heels, apply coconut oil to the area and wrap loosely with clingfilm and leave overnight. You can also add a teaspoon of coconut oil to a bowl of warm water and soak your feet or hands while relaxing.
Another super food for our skin is Shea butter. Fat that is extracted from the nut of the Shea tree, give us this luxurious, white oil. Native to West Africa it has been used in moisturizers, lotions, pastes, lip balm and even food. Often mixed with coconut butter, it does have a very different distinctive taste and smell.
Shea butter has anti inflammatory, antimicrobial, emollient and humectant properties. Shea butter has also been used in sun-blocking lotions as some of its components have the capability to absorb ultraviolet radiation.
Like coconut oil, Shea butter goes trough a similar process when it comes to refining or being unrefined ( Virgin ). Always look for Organically Certified Virgin Shea butter.
Safe to use in pregnancy ( for stretch marks ), babies, and children. Shea butter has so many multi uses and can very easily be combined with essential oils. Melting the butter down, adding some of your favorite essential oils and pouring into a jar or container. It sets quite fast, and makes for one of my favorite body moisturizers.
There might be many more different products on the market or even remedies you can mix up in you kitchen to combat a dry skin. The problem I have sometimes is TIME. I just don’t have the time to always mix up a mask or wrap that I need to lay in for 30min to 1 hour ( or even longer ). I want two main things when it comes to a body moisturizer. 1. 100% Organic certified Virgin and 2. Little time needed with no fuss. Either one or a combination of Coconut oil and Shea butter is my ticket to luxurious soft healthy skin.
With the exceptional benefits ” packed ” inside these moisturizers you will never have a dry, tight uncomfortable skin again. No more excuses that you don’t have the time to look after your skin anymore.
Please comment on my post below, I would love to hear your experiences with Coconut oil or Shea Butter.
Until next time