Dry or scaly skin got you down? If your skin is nowhere close to being as smooth as a baby’s behind, keep reading. All sorts of skin conditions can crop up that leave you with flaky, scaly skin, and we’re here to help bring some clarity to the situation.

In this article, we’ll share a few of the potential causes (although there are many) of scaly skin. Then we’ll cover tips for caring for your dry or eczema-prone skin since these are two of the common reasons for scaly skin.

Let’s jump in so you can get right to showing your skin the TLC it deserves!

Potential Causes Of Scaly Skin

First of all, what exactly do we mean by “scaly skin?” Well, scaly skin can look dry and cracked and appear to be peeling, scaling, and flaking.

The potential causes of scaly skin are many. That’s why it’s important to speak with your doctor or dermatologist to get to the bottom of what’s happening with your skin.

That said, we’ll briefly go over a few of the causes before offering skincare tips for two of the common ones: dry skin and eczema.

Eczema

Eczema (atopic dermatitis) is an inflammatory skin condition that leaves you with rashes that can be red, scaly, dry, cracked, and very, very itchy. It can show up on various parts of the body.

Some kids outgrow eczema, but for others, it’s a lifelong condition that needs to be managed by avoiding triggers and the flare-ups that can result.

The actual cause of eczema is a bit of a mystery, but triggers can include heat, sweat, stress, allergies, irritants, and dry skin.

Dry Skin

 Man scratching his scaly skin

Run-of-the-mill dry skin can leave you with redness and itchiness along with flaky, scaly, or cracked skin. Some people are more prone to dry skin than others, but it happens to everyone at some point or another!

Cold, dry weather, sun exposure, and washing your hands frequently are just a few things that can dry your skin out or contribute to already dry skin.

Psoriasis

 Psoriasis on elbow

While there are several different types of psoriasis, in general, psoriasis may leave you with red patches of skin and silver or white scales. It can also mean dry, cracked skin, itching, and even joint swelling or stiffness.

This is another lifelong skin condition that can ebb and flow.

Athlete’s Foot

If you have what seems to be dry skin on your feet, it may be due to a fungus that we commonly call “athlete's foot.” It can give you dry, peeling, flaky skin on the soles of your feet or between your toes.

Dandruff

Even if you don’t deal with it yourself, you’re probably aware of the flaky skin of dandruff, which is technically known as seborrheic dermatitis.

Dandruff can be itchy and cause yellow or white flaky or scaly skin on your scalp. Those flakes are typically what show up on your shoulders looking a lot like snow.

Actinic Keratosis

A serious skin condition that can turn into skin cancer, actinic keratosis is not something to mess around with. It shows up as a small patch of skin that’s thick and scaly and is due to excessive sun exposure.

We have two words of advice here: Wear mineral sunscreen and see your dermatologist ASAP.

 Mom applying sunscreen on child face

We’ve discussed several causes of scaly skin, but keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list! Allergic reactions, other skin conditions, and even overall health conditions can cause scaly skin that needs the attention of a dermatologist. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns.

However, if your scaly skin is due to a simple case of dryness or you’re trying to manage the scaly skin of eczema, keep reading. We’ll provide tips just for you!

Tips For Treating And Preventing Scaly Skin

Treating And Preventing Scaly Skin Due To Dryness

Treating dry skin isn’t always as simple as lotioning up and solving the problem. And sometimes dry skin is a stand-alone problem, while other times it’s a sign of another skin concern or a trigger for certain skin conditions.

Regardless, hydrating and moisturizing are your two best moves. If you have scaly skin due to skin dryness, here are five ways to combat it naturally.

1) Moisturize Regularly

Moisturizing your skin refers to helping keep your skin barrier intact. This barrier is what locks needed hydration in and the bad guys (like pollutants and irritants) out.

But don’t moisturize with just any lotion. When your skin is dry, sensitive, and susceptible, it’s essential to use a moisturizer that will help, not hurt. That means a gentle, hypoallergenic lotion, like Babo Botanicals Sensitive Skin Fragrance Free Daily Hydra Therapy Lotion.

This fragrance-free lotion is made with natural shea butter, sunflower oil, and sea buckthorn oil to deeply moisturize your skin, along with colloidal oatmeal to help soothe and heal. It’s perfect for anyone with very sensitive or dry skin.

2) Use Gentle And Mild Soap

Washing is already a little drying to your skin. So, if you’re dealing with dry skin, you’ll want to avoid irritating it even more by staying away from soaps with irritating chemical ingredients.

Just like lotion, gentle, natural, and hypoallergenic is the name of the game! Go with a soap, like Babo Botanicals Lavender Dream™ Plant Based Hand Soap, that will moisturize and protect your skin even while it cleans.

With anti-bacterial manuka essential oil and organic argan oil, shea butter, olive oil, and aloe vera, this rich soap leaves your hands cleansed and moisturized.

3) Take Shorter Showers

 Man taking a shower

Speaking of washing up, long, hot showers can play a part in drying your skin. To limit the drying effect, shorten your shower by a few minutes and use warm (not hot) water.

To get clean without compromising your skin, try Babo Botanicals Sensitive Skin Fragrance Free Hydra Therapy Face & Body Wash. This EWG Verified formula is designed for adults with sensitive skin to help regain softness and comfort.

4) Protect Your Skin From The Sun

 young girl soaking in the sun protected by Babo Botanicals sun care products

The elements (think cold, dry weather or laying out in the sun) can dry your skin out even more. But that doesn’t mean you have to hole up inside.

Simply bundle up on the chilly days, and when you enjoy a day in the sun, wear protective clothing and use a safe mineral sunscreen.

Babo Botanicals hydrating and protective sunscreens are all made with mineral UV filters (non-nano zinc oxide and titanium dioxide), so you can take your pick between a spray, lotion, or stick. The sunscreen world is your oyster.

5) Practice Healthy Habits

 Woman meditating near Babo Botanicals products

Your skin works in conjunction with the rest of your body, and while you may not think that your daily habits like eating, drinking, and exercising have much to do with your skin, they do!

Drink plenty of water, take a deep breath when you’re stressed (yoga, anyone?), put down the cigarettes, and move your body.

Treating And Preventing Scaly Skin Due To Eczema

When your scaly skin is due to eczema, moisturize your skin and avoid triggers. We’ll leave you with four tips below, but be sure to check out the full article here.

1) Keep Skin Moisturized

We may sound like a broken record here, but we’ll say it again: moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!

Also, to help your skin stay hydrated, you may consider running a humidifier in your home to pump some moisture into the air.

2) Avoid Scratching

We realize this is much easier said than done, but we’ll say it anyway: avoid scratching. Scratching may feel good at the moment, but it only serves to irritate your skin even more and can make eczema worse.

3) Choose Clothes Wisely

 Stack of folded clothes

Clothing is important when you’re trying to control eczema flare-ups. Dress your little one in clothes made with gentle fabric and layers that can be easily put on and taken off.

Do the same for yourself, avoiding materials that scratch and irritate your skin. To learn what works for you and what doesn’t, keep a close eye on what you wear and how your skin reacts.

Avoiding irritation and sweating as well as staying cool are all key in caring for eczema-prone skin. Choosing the right clothes can help!

4) Use Hypoallergenic Laundry Detergent

We already mentioned the importance of choosing a gentle lotion, hand soap, and body wash, but when you’re up against eczema, take it a step further.

Wash clothes with a hypoallergenic laundry detergent and fabric softener to decrease your chances of any irritant coming in contact with your skin.

Sayonara, Scaly Skin!

 Mom hugging daughter on bed

Since scaly skin can be a sign of many skin and health conditions, the best thing to do is give your doctor or dermatologist a call first.

And if your flaky skin is due to dryness or eczema, turn to the tips we mentioned in this article along with your dermatologist’s recommendations.

Whether your skin is simply dry or eczema-prone (or both!), your delicate skin will appreciate gentle, natural, and hypoallergenic products, like Sensitive Skin Fragrance Free Daily Hydra Therapy Lotion, Lavender Dream™ Plant Based Hand Soap, and Sensitive Skin Fragrance Free Hydra Therapy Face & Body Wash.

With the right care, you’ll soon be saying “sayonara” to your scaly skin!