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7 Ways To Get the Most of Your Lotion Routine

7 Ways To Get the Most of Your Lotion Routine

As the largest organ in our body, our skin is every bit as exposed to the elements as our face. Environmental factors, the sun, and sweat can leave our skin dry and irritated. And just as we moisturize our face to keep it hydrated, moisturizing our body regularly can help soothe prickly, rough skin.

While applying body lotion may seem like a simple step, knowing when and how best to apply your lotion can elevate your post-shower body care routine. It never hurts to learn a few tips to treat your skin the absolute best so read on to discover tricks on how to use your body lotion for the most optimal results that will leave you with soft, silky skin.  

Tip 1: Apply body lotion when your skin is still damp

A common mistake that most people make when applying lotion is slathering it on dry skin. For the best results, apply your lotion right after you shower or bathe while skin is still damp. Why? Applying lotion within 5 minutes from bathing will trap some water that's still in the body and leaving some moisture behind is key. In doing so, the lotion can do its job by helping your skin absorb more healthy liquid and providing an artificial barrier that prevents water loss and keeps out foreign agents including toxins, bacteria and fungi. 

Tip 2: Exfoliate your skin first before applying lotion

Exfoliation is equally important as moisturizing in any skincare routine. Exfoliating your skin sloughs away all the dead skin on your legs and arms, revealing a softer and smoother skin underneath. Following up with a lotion after you exfoliate will help soothe the top layer of skin and strengthen the moisture barrier, causing the lotion and other skincare products to get absorbed quicker. 

Since applying lotion on damp skin works best, we recommend using a gentle body scrub while in the shower or tub to exfoliate your skin. How often you should exfoliate comes down to the type of skin you have and the type of exfoliator you prefer to use. In general, exfoliating once or twice a week is a good place to start. Too much of a good thing can leave your skin red and irritated so cut back to less frequent scrub sessions. 

Tip 3: Target drier areas of the skin

When applying body lotion, pay special attention to parts of the body that are typically drier like your hands, neck, knees, elbows and bottom of your feet. These areas are more susceptible to itching so it’s important to apply lotion to these areas throughout the day, on top of your post-shower application. 

The back is often forgotten in people’s skincare routines because it’s harder to reach and this is why we sometimes complain about dry, itchy skin in our backs. To apply lotion on your back, you can ask your partner or friend to help apply the lotion or you can also invest in an applicator. 

Other dry areas of the body that need extra TLC are your hands and palms as well as soles of the feet. These areas are the thickest skin on the body and more exposed to harsh environmental conditions so spot treating these areas will help keep them hydrated. 

Tip 4: Help lock in moisture with breathable gloves

To help repair extremely dry palms and hands before bedtime, smooth a generous amount of hand and body lotion onto your hands and use breathable cotton gloves to cover them overnight. This technique will help lock in the moisture and prevent the lotion from rubbing off while you sleep. The result? Noticeably softer, smoother hands by morning!

Tip 5: Aim for more than a silver dollar-sized dollop of lotion for your entire body

Applying the right amount of lotion can be tricky. Applying too little and you may not get the full benefits of the product. Too much, and you’ll likely end up with greasy-looking skin and a tacky feel. The fact is, the right amount of body lotion to apply will depend on several factors like how much surface area you have to cover and the formula’s consistency. Some lotions are richer than others, and you may need to use less of them than the other richer formulations.. 

Lightweight lotions are thinner and easier to spread than thick lotions, which will allow you to use less product to cover a large area of the body. While there’s no definitive rule for how much body lotion to use, we would recommend aiming for slightly more than a silver dollar-sized dollop for your entire body.  When re-applying to drier spots of your body like your hands or knees, take a pea-sized amount of lotion and smooth the formula evenly on the area as needed. 

Tip 6: Warm up the lotion on your hands and use a circular rubbing motion to apply

To correctly use the body lotion, add a dollop on your hand and rub your palms together to warm up the lotion. Warming up the lotion will help it absorb and retain the moisture in dryer areas. Next, use your hands to massage the lotion in small circular motions. Applying the lotion this way will help increase blood flow and lymphatic drainage for certain skin types, depending on how much pressure you apply to the skin. 

Tip 7: Use CBD lotion for maximum benefit

Not all lotions are made the same and there are specific beneficial ingredients that you’ll want to look for. For example, those that are prone to acne may want to go for a non-comedogenic emollient like organic shea butter to provide deep moisturization without clogging pores. For maximum benefit, using a product that contains CBD helps with soothing acne-prone skin as well as treating dry skin or certain inflammatory skin conditions. 

Dr. Nima Gharavi, dermatologist and skin cancer surgeon at the Cedars-Sinai Cosmetic Dermatology Program, says CBD may play a role in hydrating the skin as well as having anti-inflammatory effects, making it a key ingredient for people who suffer from the effects of eczema and psoriasis. 

Our verdict?

Regularly applying hand and body lotion post-bath or shower helps lock in moisture and strengthen the skin barrier, the skin’s front line of defense against microbial invasion. Some parts of the body are more prone to dryness and may demand extra attention, so applying lotion to those areas throughout the day as well as after showering or bathing is crucial to keeping the skin hydrated. Our lotion of choice? A CBD lotion that provides exceptional hydration and soothing relief to troubled skin. 

Resources: Cedars-Sinai.org

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