It takes a village of products to stay moisturized in a dry climate. Here’s what I’ve been using to keep my skin hydrated in my new (and super dry) city.
The climate in my new city is crazy dry, and as a result, I’ve turned into an enormous, panting lizard.
Within the first 48 hours of arriving in Calgary, I noticed that I was developing scales. And I mean that quite literally–my legs were looking reptilian. My face, although not yet scaly, was totally zapped with moisture. My lips were chapped for the first time since last winter, and the skin on my hands was close to cracking. Taking inventory of what few moisturizing skincare products I’d brought with me to Calgary, I realized that I needed to up my game, and quickly.
After a short period of trial and error, I’ve assembled a small army of moisturizing oils, creams, sprays, and lotions that are working–really, really working–to keep the scales at bay.
Starting in the upper left corner and going clockwise, the products are as follows:
OK, so I know water isn’t technically a beauty product, but it’s the single most important component of hydration. Since arriving in Calgary, I’ve never been so thirsty in my life–a dry climate will do that to you–and I’ve been drinking water like it’s my full-time job. That alone is definitely helping to restore moisture to my skin, and in a big way.
Avène Hydrance Optimale with SPF 25, $34 for 1.34 oz
I picked up my first Avène product when I lived in Paris 10 years ago, and I’ve been singing their praises ever since. Avène Hydrance Optimale day cream is lightweight, absorbs quickly, and helps to protect skin from the damaging effects of the sun.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser, $23.99 for 6.76 oz
La Roche-Posay is another brand I became familiar with while living in France. This cleanser is gentle on my skin, and it removes makeup and the grime of the city without stripping my face of moisture.
Evian Mineral Water Spray, $12.50 for 5 oz
This spray is a great mid-day pick-me-up for dry skin. I keep mine in the fridge and spritz it on to refresh my face whenever I feel like it.
Vaseline Intensive Care Cocoa Radiant Lotion, $4.10 for 10 oz
Vaseline, man. This stuff is no joke. The Cocoa Radiant lotion smells amazing and has completely rid my legs of scales. I slather this stuff on my body twice a day, every day: post-shower and pre-bed.
Rosehip oil prices and locations vary (find it at your local health food store and some drugstores)
I’ve been using rosehip oil since June, and our love affair is going strong. Honestly, if there’s any product on this list that you need to try, it’s rosehip oil. I rub a few drops of it on my face after cleansing in the morning and at night, and it works wonders for dry skin.
Pond’s Cold Cream Cleanser, $4.49 for 3.5 oz
I typically use the La Roche-Posay cleanser to remove my makeup at night, but on days when my skin feels super dry, I pull out the big guns: Pond’s. Yup, the stuff your grandma swears by really works, and it’s super gentle and moisturizing.
The Body Shop Vitamin E Intense Moisture Cream, $22 for 1.7 oz
I love The Body Shop’s Vitamin E line. If you have dry skin, you really need to give some of these products a try. The Intense Moisture Cream is super dense, and I slather on a thick layer of it before bed.
Johnson’s baby oil, $3.94 for 20 oz
I’ve used baby oil to remove stubborn mascara for years, but only since I moved to Calgary have I started fully appreciating its many functions. I put a few drops of baby oil in my bathwater and slather some on my shins, elbows, and knuckles post-shower.
Life Brand Hydrating Facial Sheet Hyaluronic Acid & Konjac Mask, $2.99 CAD
My fellow Canadians will recognize this hydrating sheet mask instantly because they’re everywhere at Drake’s favorite drug store, Shopper’s Drug Mart. I’m pretty sure they aren’t available anywhere in the US, but seriously, these sheet masks are worth the trip to Canada. If you can’t drop everything and drive north, check out the Sephora Collection rose sheet masks. They’re more expensive, but they’re great for hydrating skin, too.
Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips, $1.79 for 0.25 oz
I forgot to include Rosy Lips in the big product picture above–a huge oversight on my part because my lips would be a mess without this stuff. I’ve written in the past about the arduous journey I took to buy Rosy Lips for the first time, and it was all totally worth it. This Vaseline product soothes chapped lips, gives them a subtle pink shine, and smells like roses. And for less than $2 a pop, you can afford to keep one in your purse, on your desk, in your car, at the office, wherever.
So, that’s all from me! But now I want to hear from you: what products do you use to keep your skin moisturized in whatever climate you reside in? Desert-dwellers, I particularly want to hear from you. Let’s talk about all things hydration in the comments, shall we?
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website's content and editorial direction since 2013. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra's expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.