How to get rid of peeling skin: 11 proven remedies and tips

How to get rid of peeling skin?

“How to get rid of peeling skin? How to remove dead skin from face? How to get rid of dry flaky skin on my face?”; These questions sum up the struggle of people suffering from skin peeling.

But you have to accept this!

Every one of us goes through skin peeling at least once a year or at least (only if they super skin genes) once in their lifetime.

Some people see their skin peeling off in summer due to sunburn as they lay by poolside; Some people go through this dry flaky skin on face due to extreme dryness of winters and some even more unlucky people go through this ordeal both of these times twice a year.

But the worst part about skin peeling off is that some serious skin conditions can cause peeling skin to appear at any time in a year. 

That simply means, knowing “how to get rid of peeling skin” for only once or two times a year is not enough, rather, it should be 365-24/7 job.

So, if you are suffering from dry, flaky and scaly skin on your face, then missing out on this post is not an option.

Below are the best remedies and preventative steps to effectively get rid of peeling skin problems and reveal soft, smooth and healthy skin underneath it.

Peeling skin: Causes, symptoms & picture

peeling skin causes and pictures

Actually peeling of the skin is our body’s way of repairing our damaged skin cells.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, actually, a normal human body sheds almost 30,000-50,000 skin cells daily and replaces them with new cells. So, we all shed it but it is not noticeable in every one of us.

However, when our skin becomes severely dry or gets damaged from sunburns and some serious skin conditions, it starts to slough off in larger bits and pieces which is commonly known to us as peeling skin.

However, the natural peeling process of the skin is largely harmless, but it can really be itchy and uncomfortable, especially when we have it on our faces in the form of flaky and scaly skin.

Causes and symptoms of peeling skin

Both sunburn and extreme dryness are the most common and leading causes of peeling skin on the face, forehead and other body parts but there are a number of other skin conditions that can cause your skin to peel off too.

Narrowing down your causes and symptoms is key to targeted and effective treatment. Here are some potential causes of peeling skin:

1. Sunburns skin peeling

This is the most common cause of peeling skin due to excessive exposure to scorching sun and its common symptom is red, irritated, and inflamed skin that’s flaking off to gradually reveal new skin cells underneath it.

2. Extreme dryness & lack of moisture

Extreme dryness and loss of moisture particularly in winters can lead to dry peeling flakes of your skin.

3. Certain skin conditions like…

  1. Seborrheic dermatitis – While Seborrheic dermatitis primarily affects scalps, but it can appear on your face too and cause uncomfortable scaling, itching, and redness.
  2. Eczema – Eczema is basically an autoimmune skin condition that manifests in the form of red, brown and scaly peeling patches on faces and other body parts.
  3. Psoriasis – This psoriasis is another chronic skin condition that is characterized by the presence of white, red and scaly patches that are generally painful.
  4. Hypothyroidism – Hypothyroidism is a body situation in which below normal production of thyroid hormones by our body results in serious health concerns like fatigue, weight gain and peeling the skin.
  5. Rosacea – Rosacea is another skin condition under which broken blood vessels beneath your skin lead to skin redness, soreness, and peeling of skin on your face.
  6. Certain Allergic reaction – Some allergic reaction to new skincare products like a moisturizer can cause clogging of pores and swelling which can lead your skin to dry up and shed out in the form of large skin peels.
  7. Deficiency of Niacin – The deficiency of Niacin and toxicity of vitamin A can be another potential cause of peeling skin.
  8. Peeling skin syndrome – Although this peeling skin syndrome is a rare thing when it occurs your skin becomes patched and starts peeling off.
  9. Medications side effects – Your peeling off the skin can be due to allergic reactions to certain medications like topical medications, seizure medications, fitness medications and others alike.

Treating peeling skin: Best tips & remedies

Best tips and remedies for treating peeling skin

As mentioned before, sunburns due to scorching sun and extreme dryness in the winter are the most common causes for most of the people to make their skin peel off.

Therefore, this post would primarily focus on the treatment of peeling skin caused by only these two underlying causes. Let’s see what are the best immediate treatments and remedies for the peeling of the skin due to these leading causes.

Step 1. Immediately take a pain reliever

pain reliever for peeling skin

This should be your first step towards effective treatment of peeling skin due to sunburns on your face or other body parts. While looking for OTC sunburn peeling skin treatment, always look out for ibuprofen (Advil) or aspirin (Bayer).

This targeted medicine can immediately work to lessen the pain, inflammation, and redness associated with sunburn peeling skin.

This targeted medicine can immediately work to lessen the pain, inflammation, and redness associated with sunburn peeling skin.

Step 2. Gently slough away dead, peeling skin

slough away dead peeling skin

This is the second important step for treating acute peeling of the skin. But this should be done with extreme caution and care since a peeling skin is the most sensitive stage of skin.

So, it makes sense to prefer gentle physical exfoliant like soft cloth or disposable cleansing cloth over chemical exfoliants like alpha or beta hydroxy acids.

Also, avoid using harsh abrasive material likes puffs or sponges because while they would help you quickly remove the peeling skin shreds but it can cause potential irritation and infection.

Finally, never rub or scrub the affected area rather make this exfoliation process smoother and effective, you can sprinkle cool water on it and keep patting yourself with a dry soft towel until you are able to gently remove it.

Step 3. Take a cool bath

cool bath for peeling skin

Once you have gently exfoliated your hanging skin, now it’s time to take a cool bath to immediately provide sunburn relief and prevent further peeling.

However, if your peeling skin has formed blistered, avoid it to popping up your blisters and trigger further peeling off. Also, avoid using any detergent soaps or bath oils to avoid irritating and complicating your peeling skin problem.

Step 4. Try some moisturizing soothing remedies 

moisturizing remedies for peeling skin

This should be your fourth step towards treating the skin peeling problem right after you have taken a cool bath.

Essentially a sunburn dries out the skin which intensifies the peeling sensation and in this particular situation, a deep moisturizing agent would be your best friend.

This has been confirmed in a study conducted in the International Journal of Research in Pharmacy and Chemistry that a good fragrance-free moisturizer is the best remedy to protect sunburn affected skin.

1) Aloe vera moisturizer

natural Aloe vera moisturizing remedy

I am sure you would know the deep moisturizing and hydrating benefits of Aloe vera which are especially handy in case you have skin peeling due to sunburns.

Applying aloe vera in the form of a gel or lotion can provide immediate relief by 

  • Cooling down the burning sensation of the skin
  • reduce inflammation and soothes the pain
  • slow or reduce the skin’s peeling process

How to apply it?

Using your fingers, gently apply it over your skin and just leave it as it and don’t rub and try to spread it out as this is enough to reap moisturizing benefits while avoiding any irritation or pain.

Apply this moisturizer at least two times a day just right after you come out of the shower or when you have damped your skin to help it seal the cooling moisture of water inside to calm itchiness, irritation of peeling skin.

Step 5: Deeply hydrate your skin by drinking a lot of water

water for deep hydration

You already know that only water can counter fire. The same is the case with the burning you have just endured. So, immediately take a lot of water and keep consuming at least 8-ounce of water or liquid daily while you completely recover from the sunburn peeling. 

The cooling effects of water would not only counter the peeling and pain caused by the skin burns but would also aid in the natural exfoliation process of your peeling skin.

Or you can buy an over-the-counter nourishing body cream that has hydrating lips and ceramides that would not only help you in repairing your skin but would help create an occlusive barrier to keep water (which you have just taken) from evaporating and losing its cooling and calming effects on burning skin.

6. Stay away from skin irritants

Anything like using hotter or cooler water, intense scratching or rubbing of the surface, sun exposure should be avoided at all costs to avoid aggravating your sunburn damage to the skin.

7. Apply a cool compress on the surface

Applying a cool compress on your skin for about 25-30 minutes can be handy in relieving your burning sensation and peeling. However, please don’t use ice or too cold compress as it can lead to irritation problems.

8. Cover up your skin surface

Your sunburnt skin is very sensitive to outside heat or irritants. 

So, while you are supposed to limit your outing but even if you have to, don’t be lazy enough to not cover up your skin surface with a fine layer of sunscreen of at least SPF 45 or higher

How to prevent skin from peeling?

skin peeling prevention

Best peeling skin prevention tips

Preventing sunburn in the first place is the best way to prevent the skin from peeling due to sunburn. Follow these effective prevention tips to avoid affected by it in the first place.

1. Always use fragrance-free skin products

Never use any scented and fragrance giving skin products as they have ingredients that dry your skin and make it vulnerable to peeling. Always use mild cleansers and soaps.

Also, avoid these products…

  • Antibacterial soaps
  • Deodorants soaps
  • Alcohol containing face products

2. Regularly use a good moisturizer after washing or bathing

Make it a habit to use a moisturizer whenever you wash your face or take a bath as this would allow you to keep your skin fairly hydrated and moisturized to make it less vulnerable to peeling sunburns.

3. Always be soft on your skin

Your skin is sensitive and you have to treat it so. So, always use softer clothes and towels to avoid rubbing and irritating your gentle and soft skin.

4. Never take hot showers

Never ever take hot showers rather only take mildly hot (lukewarm showers) as this can easily dry out your skin to make it vulnerable to peeling and the benefit of opening up of pores would be doing you more harm than good. This is what dermatologists recommend too.

5. Regularly exfoliate and cleanse your skin

As soon as you find your skin has started peeling, immediately exfoliate your skin and apply a good cleanser to avoid spreading it out. However, you need to exercise a few precautions.

  • Don’t use a cleanser that has alcohol, perfume, fragrance or AHAs (alpha-hydroxy acids) in them.
  • Only use lukewarm water and a soft cloth and gently rub the skin to help the easy flaking process of the skin.
  • Finally, don’t ever try to peel off your skin when it is damp or wet.

6. Always keep yourself well hydrated

As explained earlier, you need to keep your body and skin well hydrated regardless you have a skin peeling problem or not. While regular bathing would help you hydrate your skin surface but deep hydration of skin can only be achieved if you drink a lot of water daily. 

Aim for drinking at least 8-ounces of water daily to make your body and skin resistant to potentially harmful environmental factors like sunburn.

 And even if you get a sunburn skin peeling like a problem, having a properly hydrated body would help you minimize its damage and inflammation.

7. Keep your surroundings humidified

For serious problems like peeling off the skin due to sunburns or dryness, intense hydration through deep moisturization and humidification is a must.

Having a humidified surrounding is the final layer of your efforts to keep your body well-hydrated and deeply moisturize from the inside out to effectively keep any skin peeling aiding sources at bay.

And for that, a one-time investment in a good humidifier is very important as it would help you to keep your surroundings adequately humidified and moisturized.

Beautywised tip!
Don’t rely on air conditioners for your cool surroundings. In fact, they suck out your room moisture to give you a chilling environment. That’s why you see your windows pane dripping with water.

How to get rid of dry & flaky skin on face?

get rid of dry flaky skin on face

The following are the best tips to get rid of that dry flaky and scaly skin on your face.

1. Do proper moisturization daily

Daily moisturization

Moisturizing your face is the first step that you should look up to for your dry patches to face a problem. Essentially, they improve your skin’s natural barrier to water loss by effectively helping you to do water retention which is crucial for your skin to look fresh and supple.

Ingredients to look for in a good moisturizer

All good moisturizers which are face friendly contain following dry skin curing ingredients

  • hyaluronic acid
  • ceramides
  • colloidal oatmeal

Ingredients to avoid in moisturizers

Some moisturizers can contain the following harmful ingredients which can make your skin problem worse. Be aware of these in your moisturizers

  • alcohol
  • Artificial fragrance or coloring agents
  • dioxane
  • petrolatum or petroleum

 

Natural Homemade moisturizers

If you can’t get your hands on some branded moisturizers, don’t worry, there are some good natural and homemade moisturizers that can help you in relieving your dry face problem to a great extent. 

These natural, homemade moisturizers found at most homes are

  • pure aloe vera gel
  • coconut oil
  • shea butter

Caution please! Since coconut oil and shea butter are both full of natural oils, using them in excess can potentially lead you to breakouts problem. So factor that in during your usage.

2. Use an only gentle cleanser for your facial skin

gentle facial cleanser

Look, your facial skin is the most sensitive skin of your body and you have to treat it so. Hence, a good gentle cleanser is the best possible option for you. 

  1. Use only your fingers while rubbing your face and never use a rough, abrasive piece of cloth to use on your face otherwise it can lead to serious irritation.
  2. Avoid washing your face too much as it can rob of its natural oil and make it further dry. The best option for you is to wash it in only morning and evening and especially at night, you should use a good cleanser to remove day-long dirt.
  3. While washing your face gently is important, the products you are using for your face are even more important. 

Steer clear of any face product like that contain harsh ingredients like alcohol, retinoids, etc which can cause severe irritation and rob your natural oil to make them more dry and rough.

Ingredients to avoid in your face products

You should avoid the following types of products that may not be nice and gentle for your face.

  • Any types of soaps that contain artificial colors, fragrances or plastics.
  • Any cleanser or moisturizer than contain alcohol, alpha hydroxy acids, and retinoids because these can easily lead your skin inflammation and irritation.
  • sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)
  • Products made up of petroleum and paraffin
  • parabens
  • diethanolamine (DEA)
  • monoethanolamine (MEA)
  • triethanolamine (TEA)

Ingredients to find in your face products

There is a whole lot of gentle face moisturizing cleansers, soaps and other face products that can help your dry patched face. Look for the following list of ingredients that can help you retain moisture in your skin and prevent them from getting dried.

  • polyethylene glycol
  • alkyl-polyglucoside
  • silicone surfactants
  • lanolin
  • Paraffin
  • Synthetic cleaning agents which contain sulfur trioxide and ethylene oxide which are milder for your sensitive skin.

3. Make use of exfoliation to purify your skin

exfoliation for dry skin

This is another important step that you need to take to effectively treat your dry skin on your face. Essentially, our skin, naturally, in a month,  replace old skin cells with new ones by shedding old ones.

However, sometimes, when your skin is unable to shed down these old cells, which are left stuck on the surface giving your skin dry skin patches with clogged pores.

This is where exfoliation comes in as it is a manual process to remove these dead cells which take care of dry patches and gives your skin a relative smoother complexion.

So, if you don’t want to get dry patches on your face, never miss purging your skin by removing some stuck old skin cells by making use of exfoliation. Now, exfoliation can be both a mechanical or a chemical process.

As the name indicates, mechanical is the physical removal of leftover dead skin cells while the chemical is making use of chemicals to remove excess dead skin cells on the face.

Manual or Mechanical exfoliation involves

  • cleansing brushes
  • exfoliating washcloths
  • facial scrubs

Manual or Mechanical exfoliation involves

  • cleansing brushes
  • exfoliating washcloths
  • facial scrubs

Basically chemical exfoliators work by dissolving excess old skin cells and remove them from pores which reveals soft and supple skin underneath.

Chemical exfoliation involves

  • Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs)
  • Beta hydroxy acids ( BHAs) 

Prevention tips for dry skin on the face

Adhere by following preventative tips to avoid getting dry skin on your face

  • Always wash your face with a mild cleanser
  • Use sunscreen in summer and cover-up for cold dry air in winters
  • Always use a moisturizer after bathing or washing your face
  • Never use hot water for washing your face as it can strip your natural oils of the skin
  • drink plenty of water to keep your body properly hydrated
  • Watch out for excessive caffeine intake
  • Never undergo artificial tanning
  • Always use a humidifier
  • quitting smoking can help dry skin

Best Natural home remedies for dry peeling skin

natural remedies for dry peeling skin on face

There are some effective home remedies for dry skin that can be handy for your dry, dead, flaky and scaly skin on your face.

1. Olive Oil Cleanser & moisturizer for dry face

olive oil moisturizer

Olive oil is one of the best natural remedies for your dry face because of its amazing cleansing and deep moisturizing properties which are God’s blessing for a dull and dry face.

2. DIY Avocado Mask for dry face 

DIY Avocado mask

Avocado mask is another natural soothing agent for dry skin and especially face.

Slice an avocado in half and mix it with a few teaspoons of olive oil.  Further, adding a couple of teaspoons of honey is a good idea and it will make this mask further potent. 

3. Oatmeal for your dry face skin

oat meal mask

Oatmeal is another great natural recipe for your dry skin as it has amazing anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and deep moisturizing properties for your dull skin.

You can make use of oatmeal for your dry skin in following two beneficial ways like oatmeal bath and oatmeal-honey exfoliating mask.

4. Coconut oil for dry skin

coconut oil for dry skin

Coconut oil is a great natural dry skin solution. Not only is it a great moisturizer but a very good anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial too which is such a great solution for dry, irritated skin.

A study conducted in 2014 found it to be a great alternative for petroleum jelly for effective dry skin treatment and providing the skin with effective hydration for dry skin.

Similarly, a 2016 research found coconut oil of having amazing emollient characteristics which are essentially moisturizer filling up empty gaps in the skin making it appear more smooth, supple and moisturized.

5. Milk for your dry face skin

milkk for dry skin

Milk is another natural blessing for your dry skin as it has amazing exfoliating, anti-inflammatory, deep moisturizing and soothing your dry irritated skin.

Milk can be beneficial in either way you desire i.e both taking as part of your skin diet or applying directly on your skin. 

A research conducted in 2015 found some positive results suggesting its possible role in soothing your dry skin. However, more research is needed to confirm its exact beneficial role for our skin.

6. Aloe Vera  for dry skin

Aloe vera for dry skin

Although Aloe Vera is especially good for sunburns, however, its amazing soothing properties can find its use for dry, irritated skin too. A 2003 study actually found it helpful against dry skin, rough skin.

Furthermore, It has been helpful against redness and irritation, combating wrinkles and fines lines which are signs of aging.

However, as with any product, be moderate as some people can get an allergic reaction to it, so always patch test before allover application.

7. Sunflower seed oil for dry skin

sunflower seed oil for dry skin

Sunflower oil is another reliable dry skin solution.

This has been confirmed in a study conducted in 2013. It clearly found it to be very good at improving your skin hydration and ultimately providing much needed deep moisturization for dry barren skin of your face.

8. Honey for dry face

honey for dry skin

Honey is considered as ‘jack of all trades’ for a lot of skin problems.

By its nature, it is an amazing moisturizing, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory agent that can happily cater to a host of skin problems, especially for dry, irritated skin and a study conducted in 2012 has confirmed it too.

When to see a dermatologist?

Self-healing and treatment don’t always work for everyone because everyone’s problem might be different.

So, when you have tried out all the mentioned remedies and treatment at home, but you are not feeling any improvement, rest assured, there is some serious about your peeling skin problem.

Particularly, watch out for these things to happen which signals that need professional treatment. You need to meet your dermatologist when you find that

  • Your body is witnessing  a spread of blisters
  • You are feeling severe fever and chills are running across your body
  • You are feeling dizziness, nausea
  • Your skin is bleeding, smelling and oozing out a yellowish liquid

FAQs

Q: How long does sunburn take to heal?

Ans: Generally, a moderate sunburn would normally take about 3-5 days however, peeling of the skin due to sunburn can continue to do so for the next 10-15 days in smaller portions.
With that being said, peeling due to sunburn actually starts after a couple of days after you have undergone sunburn but it would stop only when it is properly healed which normally takes at least a week.

Q2: How long does peeling last?

Ans: For most types of burns which are generally milder in nature, peeling would last for about 7-10 days although it can continue to happen in less noticeable amounts for even up to 3-4 weeks.
However, during this time, you must take note of these worsening signs of your peeling skin which necessitates a visit to your dermatologist or doctor. You should watch out for these troubling signs for your sunburn caused peeling skin
Your body is witnessing  a spread of blisters
You are feeling severe fever and chills are running across your body
You are feeling dizziness, nausea
Your skin is bleeding, smelling and oozing out a yellowish liquid

Q: How do you fix peeling skin?

Ans: You can easily fix your peeling skin by following these steps and remedies.
Step 1. Immediately take a pain reliever
Step 2. Gently slough away dead, peeling the skin
Step 3. Take a cool bath
Step 4. Try some moisturizing remedies like Aloe vera
Step 5: Deeply hydrate your skin by drinking a lot of water
Step 6. Stay away from skin irritants
Step 7. Apply a cool compress on the surface
Step 8. Cover up your skin surface

Q: How do you get rid of peeling skin from sunburn?

Ans: You can easily get rid of your peeling skin from sunburn if you follow these steps and remedies.
Step 1. Immediately take a pain reliever
Step 2. Gently slough away dead, peeling the skin
Step 3. Take a cool bath
Step 4. Try some moisturizing remedies like Aloe vera
Step 5: Deeply hydrate your skin by drinking a lot of water
Step 6. Stay away from skin irritants
Step 7. Apply a cool compress on the surface
Step 8. Cover up your skin surface

Q: How long does it take for the peeling to go away?

Ans: For most types of burns which are generally milder in nature, peeling would take about 7-10 days to go away although it can continue to happen in less noticeable amounts for even up to 3-4 weeks.
However, during this time, you must take note of these worsening signs of your peeling skin which necessitates a visit to your dermatologist or doctor.

Q: How do you stop peeling after you start?

Ans: You can easily stop peeling once you have started if you follow these steps and remedies.
Step 1. Immediately take a pain reliever
Step 2. Gently slough away dead, peeling the skin
Step 3. Take a cool bath
Step 4. Try some moisturizing remedies like Aloe vera
Step 5: Deeply hydrate your skin by drinking a lot of water
Step 6. Stay away from skin irritants
Step 7. Apply a cool compress on the surface
Step 8. Cover up your skin surface

Q: How to get rid of dry flaky skin on face overnight?

Ans: You can get rid of dry flaky skin on face overnight by doing the following treatment steps.
Step 1. Immediately take a pain reliever
Step 2. Gently slough away dead, peeling the skin
Step 3. Take a cool bath
Step 4. Try some moisturizing remedies like Aloe vera
Step 5: Deeply hydrate your skin by drinking a lot of water
Step 6. Stay away from skin irritants
Step 7. Apply a cool compress on the surface
Step 8. Cover up your skin surface

Q: How long does sunburn take to heal?

Ans: Generally, a moderate sunburn would normally take about 3-5 days however, peeling of the skin due to sunburn can continue to do so for the next 10-15 days in smaller portions.

With that being said, peeling due to sunburn actually starts after a couple of days after you have undergone sunburn but it would stop only when it is properly healed which normally takes at least a week.

Work cited

  1. “How to Get Rid of Peeling Skin on the Face, Fast” by Healthline
  2. “How to stop peeling skin” by Healthline
  3. “How to treat peeling skin” by Medicalnewstoday

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