Skin-Care Tips

My Skin Is so Dang Dry Right Now and I Finally Found a Secret Ingredient That Helps

Zoe Weiner

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Photo: Getty Images/Hero Images

Hooray—the holidays are here! But there’s one problem: Instead of being able to focus on how excited I am to sit by the fire and do nothing but drink eggnog and watch Hallmark movies for the next 72 hours straight (goodbye, office!), all I can think about is how chapped my entire body is. 

Between the cold weather and the dry air from the heater, my skin doesn’t stand a dang chance. From my lips to my cheeks to my fingers to my toes, literally everything feels so dehydrated that it could flake off at any given moment. It sucks. My desk is a graveyard of chapsticks, hand creams, and body lotion, none of which had been able to do the trick in putting me out of my dehydrated misery—until I discovered Lanolips All-Over Golden Skin Salve ($26).

The bottle—which is so cute!—touts the balm as “nourishing,” “hydrating,” and “super intense,” and after slathering it onto every single part of my body, I can confirm that all three claims are abundantly true. It’s made with lanolin, which is a bi-product of sheep’s wool (so, not vegan, but according to Lanolips’ website, their version is cruelty-free) and helps skin hydrate from within. Plus, it holds up to 400 percent of its weight in moisture, which means that heater face doesn’t stand a chance against it.

I’m a big fan of a multi-purpose product, and this stuff certainly fits the bill. It’s technically meant to be used on your hands, feet, and elbows, all of which I’ve been applying it to like a madwoman, but I’ve also started using it on my knees and my cheeks and am deeply in love. The brand also makes a lip-specific version of their product (Lanolips 101 Ointment ($13)) that comes in a smaller tube and can be used on lips, cuticles, and other itty-bitty body parts. That product is great too, but, meh—why schlep around two products when one will do the job?

While I personally am deeply obsessed with lanolin as an ingredient for nourishing my parched skin, Virginia-based derm Dr. Lily Talakoub notes that there is one caveat to using it. “It’s good and bad: It does have really moisturizing qualities, however, lanolin has been shown to cause allergic reactions,” she says. “If you don’t have sensitivity to lanolin then it’s okay to use, but it’s also a wool derivative—so if you have sensitivities to wool, don’t use lanolin.” If that’s the case, she recommends cocoa butter, essential oils, and ceramides for the body, and shea butter for lips.

Because lanolin is such a moisturizing superstar (as long as you don’t have those allergies, that is), keep scrolling for products that employ it for extra hydration. Consider your dry skin saved.

Winter skin needs a whole lot of love, so here’s how to reset it this Winter Solstice. And if you’re still feeling extra dry, try slathering on some essential oils.

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