DIY Beauty Tricks for Healing Dry, Chapped Skin

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Masks and Scrubs From Ingredients in Your Kitchen

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face masks for dry skin. West End 61 for Getty Images

If you suffer from dry, chapped skin, you're not alone. It's a common issue, but one that you can combat with a few moisturizing skincare products that can be made at home. Whether your skin is dehydrated from the winter elements, dry from the natural aging process, or parched for some reason you can't determine, these recipes are for you.

Many of the ingredients can be found in your kitchen cabinets and refrigerator. Avocado, honey, milk, and brown sugar are all wonderful for dry skin.

If you have skin sensitivities, you'll want to do a test on your neck or wrist first. However, most of these ingredients are so pure that most people won't have a problem. They're certainly better than the stuff found in store-bought jars, which often use chemicals for preservation that can contribute to dry skin.

After you wash off the face mask or scrub, be sure to slather on a great moisturizer or oil afterward for full effect. You'll be delighted to know that these can also be found in your cupboard.

Here are some things to consider in the meantime:

  • Everyone's skin will have different needs. Just because something works for one person, doesn't necessarily mean it will work for you. So if you try one of these recipes and find the results to be less than ideal, you may need to tweak it or move on to another.
  • Water, water, water. People who have incredible skin tend to drink lots of water.
  • Lay off the alcohol and the sugar before a big event when you want your skin to glow.
  • Rethink your cleanser. If you have dry skin, use a creamy cleanser that won't strip it of oils.
  • Exfoliation is key. You need to remove dead cells so your skin can soak up moisturizer or oils. But if you have redness, consider skipping anything that will tear at the skin, like a washcloth, sugar, or scrubs with microbeads (which are bad for the environment anyway). Instead, try an enzyme-based exfoliant. These enzymes (typically found in fruit) break down the dead skin naturally and won't dry out your skin any more than it already is.

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Avocado Face Masks

Avocados are particularly moisturizing. These four amazing avocado masks are great for all skin types, except for oily skin. They are particularly wonderful for mature, wrinkled, and dry skin.

With one exception, the recipes simply require a fresh avocado; the other uses avocado oil. It's best to use a ripe, fresh, organic avocado and to make sure to mash it up into a creamy pulp. When combined with carrot, honey, oil, egg, or buttermilk, they leave your skin fresh and perfectly moisturized.

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Brown Sugar Scrub

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Brand X Pictures / Getty

A natural exfoliant, brown sugar is the base for many wonderful facial scrubs. These brown sugar scrub recipes not only clear your skin of dry skin cells, they also include moisturizing ingredients.

From a simple coconut oil and brown sugar blend to a hydrating honey and coconut oil scrub with your favorite floral essential oils, there's sure to be a recipe here that works for you. They work on all skin types but are particularly useful for revitalizing excessively dry skin.

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Homemade Milk Mask

Milk can nourish and soothe skin.
Trinette Reed/ Blend Images/ Getty Images

This is a classic milk mask recipe for the face. Milk works beautifully to moisturize dry skin and its lactic acid does wonders for removing dried skin cells. 

This recipe makes enough for two masks and uses powdered milk, honey, aloe vera, and essential oils. It is invigorating and will keep even the driest skin looking healthy.

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Coconut Oil and Cocoa Butter Moisturizer

Coconut oil has many uses and natural beauty benefits.
Jessica Boone/ The Image Bank/ Getty Images

Your kitchen holds one of the best beauty secrets and it is particularly useful for combating dry skin. Coconut oil can do the job all on its own and it is ideal for everyday use in the winter.

Simply slather a little on and wipe off the excess with a damp washcloth before applying your daily makeup. It acts as a perfect foundation primer and keeps super dry skin hydrated.

When you want even more hydration, combine the oil with cocoa butter and olive oil. It makes the most amazing moisturizer.

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Skin Brightening Turmeric Face Mask

Turmeric is a bright yellow spice used all the time in curries, but it also makes a brilliant face mask for dry or aging skin. You get all the spice's healing benefits, including anti-oxidant and antibacterial properties and it can reduce inflammation or soothe sun damage.

The turmeric face mask recipe is incredibly simple. You'll simply make a paste of turmeric and flour with honey and coconut oil. It not only moisturizes, it also brightens the skin and is a centuries-old trick used in Indian beauty routines.

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Dark Chocolate Face Mask

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Cocoa beans and cocoa powder. Photodisc // Getty Images

Not all chocolate is bad for your skin! Surprisingly, dark chocolate is a fantastic moisturizer when used in a mask and it's an ideal home remedy for dry skin.

With just a few simple ingredients—dark chocolate, salt, and milk—and a half an hour of your time, you can hydrate and refresh your skin. To make it even easier, the dark chocolate face mask video will walk you through every step.

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Paraffin Wax Treatment for Hands

Get softer hands with a paraffin wax treatment.
RunPhoto/ DigitalVision/ Getty Images

Your face is not the only place that is susceptible to dry, chapped skin. Many of us find that our hands simply cannot get enough moisturizer, especially in winter. That's where a paraffin wax treatment can help.

This at-home remedy is as luxurious as any wax treatment the spas offer. You simply dip your hands in melted wax, wait 30 minutes, then peel it away. It leaves your hands soft and supple and works great on your feet, too.

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Foot Scrub for Dry, Cracked Heels

emre ogan/E+/Getty Images

Winter may wreak havoc on your hands, but summer is a bear on feet. During sandal season, your heels are exposed to all sorts of harsh environments, and you can counteract that with a simple, DIY foot scrub.

It's a five-step process that works its magic over a few days if you're persistent. Once you get your heels looking and feeling great, keep up the routine on a regular basis and switch between this and a quick pumice stone scrubbing.

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Sugar or Salt Scrubs

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The last thing we recommend in the battle against dry skin is to make exfoliation a regular habit. Dry skin cells are one of your biggest opponents because they blanket the skin and prevent moisturizers from working to their full effect. By exfoliating, you're scrubbing those away and leaving your skin renewed and super clean, ready for your favorite moisturizers.

There's no need to spend big money at the store for a scrub, either. With a little sugar or salt, some water or oil, and other beneficial ingredients from the kitchen, it's very easy to make a face or body scrub at home. The recipes vary, but most will cost you just pennies and leave your skin looking great.