Tip of the Week : Dry Skin Care

Dr. Paul M. Graham

Do you suffer from dry, cracked skin in the winter? This is a very common reason for dermatology visits during colder weather months. The good news is that today’s tip will help preserve moisture giving a youthful, supple appearance to the skin. 

What you need:  1 large tube of Vaseline or Aquaphor ointment and a box of disposable vinyl gloves or Saran plastic wrap (do not use latex gloves as this rarely causes an allergy). 

  1. Immediately before bed, apply a generous amount of ointment to the skin and apply the vinyl gloves/Saran plastic wrap overtop of the ointment
  2. Leave the gloves on overnight and remove upon waking up
  3. Reapply ointment to the skin after mornings bathing
  4. Repeat for several weeks or until your skin is repaired

This process is called occlusion and is a simple trick used by dermatologists to increase the penetration of moisture and certain topical medications. It is very important not to use this technique with prescription topical steroid medications unless otherwise instructed to by your dermatologist, as this may increase the systemic absorption of certain medications. 

If your skin fails to respond to this simple trick, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist for more aggressive management. 

Published by Dr. Paul M. Graham

Paul M. Graham, D.O. (Founder/Editor-in-chief) founded Dimensional Dermatology in May 2016 with the vision to provide concise, easy to read, up-to-date dermatology and aesthetic medicine information to patients, medical staff, providers, and the general public. Dr. Graham is currently completing his training as a cosmetic dermatologic surgery fellow in Virginia Beach, Virginia at the McDaniel Laser and Cosmetic Center. He completed his dermatology training at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital and was a clinical instructor at Michigan State University. He received his B.S. degree as Summa Cum Laude at Old Dominion University, his D.O. degree as Cum Laude at Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine, completed his internship at Largo Medical Center in Largo, Florida as chief intern, and completed his dermatology residency training at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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