The skin around the eye dry and eyelids, commonly occurs during the winter months, but can also be a symptom of other skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. These conditions can cause dry, flaky, and sometimes itchy skin. Read on to know the most effective causes and natural treatments to solve the problem of dry skin on the eyelids of the eyes.
Most common causes of dry skin around the eyes
The skin under the eyes and on the eyelids is thinner than in some other parts of the body, therefore it is able to retain less moisture, leaving it vulnerable to drying out. Self-care remedies and natural moisturizers can help heal and protect the delicate skin in this area and provide relief from dry, flaky skin.
Weather – Weather often makes skin dry and flaky around the eyes – low humidity and harsh weather conditions such as wind can dry out the delicate skin around the eyes.
The Heat – Central heating, wood burning stoves and fireplaces all reduce humidity and dry out the skin.
Sun Exposure – The sun dries the skin, including the skin around the eyes. But the most significant damage occurs deeper, leading to more deep wrinkles and sagging, loose skin.
Hot baths and showers – Hot baths and showers can also lead to dryness of the delicate skin around the eyes, as well as the skin on the eyelids.
Rubbing the eyes, a lot – Excessive rubbing of the delicate skin around the eyes can irritate, leaving it more vulnerable to drying out.
Stress – Stress can trigger eczema flare-ups that can cause dry, flaky skin.
Medical conditions – Medical conditions such as hypothyroidism (active thyroid gland) can be the root of your dry skin around the eyes.
Other factors such as age – As you age, the skin under your eyes becomes thinner which can make you more vulnerable.
Skin conditions – Skin conditions such as eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, and psoriasis, can cause dry, flaky skin around the eyes.
Blepharitis – Blepharitis makes the skin red and swollen on the eyelids when the oil glands in the eyelids malfunction due to a hormonal imbalance. It also causes peeling of the skin around the eyes.
Symptoms of dry skin around the eyes
The symptoms of dry skin around the eyes and eyelids, including dry and flaky skin. You may also feel itchy and red, especially if you are rubbing the skin.
It can affect the appearance of your skin, causing cracks in the skin. The latter puts you at risk for more serious complications, such as secondary bacterial or fungal infections, the American Academy of Dermatology warns.
Let’s see what you can do to treat the dryness of the skin around the eyes.
Home remedies for dry skin around the eyes
The best treatment is to eliminate the cause of dry skin. However, dry skin around the eyes and lids can still be treated for temporary relief from symptoms if you don’t go beyond simple dry skin. If the cause of your dry skin is a more serious condition, such as blepharitis, you should see your doctor. You should also know that causes such as eczema have no cure if only creams are applied.
One way to treat itchy dry skin is to use a moisturizer after washing your face with a mild cleanser. A moisturizer will provide quick relief from the symptoms of dry skin. The important thing to remember is to hydrate your skin immediately after washing your skin to retain the moisture from the cream.
Before using any moisturizer, do a patch test first to make sure you don’t have a sensitivity and end up developing any negative reactions.
Aloe vera acts as a mild moisturizer that can help repair damage caused by dry skin around the eyes. Its antimicrobial properties can help speed up wound healing. Also, it can help treat the underlying causes of dry skin around the eyes and lids, such as psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.
Aloe vera can be applied directly to the dry, flaky skin around the eyes, taking care not to apply it inside the eyes. Use pure aloe vera gel for the most effective treatment. Simply smear a small amount on the skin around the eyes as well as the eyelid and let it absorb into the skin. You do not need rinses. Do this daily to soften the skin and to speed up the healing process of dry skin.
Virgin coconut oil
Virgin coconut oil is another effective natural moisturizer for dry skin around the eyes. It can also smooth the skin and reduce flaking. Coconut oil is able to penetrate the skin and provide deep skin hydration, while at the same time maintaining a protective layer on the skin.
Apply coconut oil to the affected area of skin near the eyes several times a day and before going to sleep. It can also be used to hydrate dry skin on the eyelids. This will help relieve itching and flaking. Also, you can slowly massage the oil into your skin. When applied in small amounts, the oil is almost completely absorbed into the skin, and you are left with non-greasy skin.
Another option is to mix coconut oil with aloe vera to create a natural healing lotion for dry, flaky skin. This mixture can also help treat the underlying causes of dry skin, such as eczema.
Cocoa butter offers another soothing hydrating treatment that can alleviate dry skin, while preventing complications such as skin cracking. A study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science found that cocoa butter improves the appearance and tone of the skin.
To use cocoa butter on your delicate skin around the eyes, try mixing it with other beneficial products like castor oil or jojoba oil. Apply the mixture daily to hydrate the skin and heal dry, flaky skin.
Also, you can make a cocoa butter lotion for dry skin by melting a solution of 1 teaspoon of coconut oil and 2 teaspoons of cocoa butter, add 1 teaspoon of sweet almond oil after it turns into a liquid. Then let the mixture harden, followed by whisking to a light consistency. You can apply the mixture to cure dry skin around the eyes for a quick remedy for flaky skin.
Natural oils to hydrate the skin
A solution of natural oils like jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, and avocado oil can also be used to treat dry skin. These provide a protective layer on the skin that can retain moisture and prevent dry skin.
You just have to put several drops of any of the above oils to keep the skin in the eye area, soft and elastic.
Natural oils can also be mixed with a drop of lavender or chamomile essential oil. The soothing aroma of the essential oil will help reduce stress and may manage other skin conditions such as eczema, explains the University of Maryland Medical Center.
When using essential oils, pay special attention not to put them in the eye itself to avoid irritation.
Stress can trigger eczema flare-ups that can lead to dry skin. Ways to relieve stress, whether it’s with essential oils, relaxation techniques, and even as simple as a good night’s sleep, can help control the factors that contribute to dry skin around the eyes.
Treat your dry skin internally
Other treatments for dry skin around the eyes work internally. These remedies affect some of the underlying causes. However, these are long-term treatments rather than quick fixes for dry skin.
Evening primrose oil
A study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science found that taking evening primrose oil improved skin moisture and roughness in participants when taking a 12-week supplement. It may offer some relief if eczema is the underlying cause of dry skin around the eyes and on the lids.
Fish oil can also improve the appearance of dry skin by smoothing it out. A study published in the Journal of Dermatological Science found that fish oil significantly increased skin hydration and reduced itchy skin within 60 days. Fish oil reduced moisture loss and itchiness while improving skin hydration.
As with any dietary supplement, consult your doctor before using supplements, especially if you have a pre-existing condition or are taking medications to prevent possible harmful interactions.
How to prevent dry skin around the eyes
There are several things you can do to prevent future outbreaks of dry skin around your eyes. These tips will focus on the triggers for dry skin to help prevent it from occurring.
Avoid aggressive products
Be kind to your skin, especially the delicate skin around the eyes. Use fragrance-free products and avoid drying soaps to avoid skin irritation. Also, you should minimize the use of skin care products around your eyes.
Play it safe
You should follow basic common-sense measures to prevent other causes of irritation that could cause dry skin around the eyes. Never share cosmetics, especially eye makeup and mascara. Also, make sure to replace your products regularly. You may even want to consider wearing less eye makeup if your skin is sensitive.
Even if dry skin around your eyes and lids makes you itch, refrain from scratching or rubbing your skin. Also, you should avoid triggers for itchy skin around the eyes, such as fragrances and pigments containing nickel, which can irritate the skin.
Other tips to prevent dry skin
- Always drink plenty of fluids, but especially during the dry winter months.
- You can use a humidifier if you find your home especially dry.
- Although you may be tempted to stay in the shower longer, keep your showers and baths short, using warm rather than hot water to avoid drying out your skin.
- To keep in moisture, use moisturizer immediately after washing.
When to see a doctor if you have dry skin around your eyes
If you find that you cannot heal the dry skin around your eyes and lids, it may be time to see your doctor. Dry, itchy skin puts you at risk for secondary infections, explains the American Academy of Dermatology. The lack of resolution can also indicate another cause of dry, itchy skin around the eyes and lids, such as blepharitis.