Many people slather on moisturizers every day thinking that they will reduce or prevent dry skin, and that, in turn they will reduce or prevent wrinkles. Is it true? Many things that cause wrinkles have nothing to do with whether or not the skin is dry – cellular aging, muscle movement, and loss of estrogen, for example. However, there are factors that dry skin and wrinkles have in common and, fortunately, they are not difficult to control. The first step is to understand dry skin, and how it comes about.

Preventing dry skin and wrinkles is dependant on both internal and external factors, but one of the most important, and the most easily addressed, is the integrity of the skin’s surface. When it is not assaulted by harsh, drying chemicals and environmental conditions, the surface of the skin is a protective barrier. The list of things it needs protection from is quite extensive:

  • Dry weather
  • Cold weather
  • Sun
  • Hot water
  • Chlorine in water
  • Heating and air conditioning
  • Almost all household cleaning products
  • Almost all facial care products
  • Almost all cosmetics
  • Airborne bacteria, pollutants and chemicals in the environment

Each of these irritates, damages, dries, and eventually breaks down that surface barrier, causing dry skin.

Underneath the surface layer lies the structure of the skin, largely consisting of collagen and elastin. Both require moisture for proper functionality – moisture that is easily depleted through the surface of the skin when it is damaged and dry. Without the moisture, the underlying layer is damaged, and the production of collagen and elastin slows down. Basically, the structure starts to cave in. That’s the wrinkle connection.

The answer is to do whatever you can to minimize your exposure to the items on the list above, and to use a shielding lotion to protect you from the things you cannot control. A shielding lotion bonds with the outer layer of the skin to form a new protective barrier that those elements destroy and, voila, no dry skin, and improved resistance to wrinkles.

About the author:
Author, Gloria MacTaggart, is a freelance writer who contributes articles on skin care for 21st Century Formulations. For more information, visit

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16 Mar 2007

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