The Best Tips for Getting Rid of Peeling Skin

February 08, 2018
Claire Rodgers
By: Claire Rodgers | by L'Oréal
The Best Tips for Getting Rid of Peeling Skin

Good news: Your flaky skin woes end here. We turned to an expert to give us the best tips for getting rid of peeling skin. Read up on what you need to do to help address the common skin concern, below.

Chances are if you’re dealing with peeling skin, you’re looking for the culprit to blame and the end-all solution. That may not be so easy since peeling skin can result from a multitude of factors. To help shed some light on the topic, we turned to board-certified cosmetic surgeon, SkinCeuticals ambassador, and consultant, Dr. Peter Schmid. Ahead, Dr. Schmid shares insight on the causes of peeling skin, as well as tips for achieving your best (most hydrated) skin yet.


Before you can understand how to get rid of peeling skin, you first need to be aware of why it may be happening in the first place. According to Dr. Schmid, your skin may be peeling as a result of its natural regeneration cycle. “The skin naturally renews itself on a 28-40-day cycle in most healthy adults, and takes longer as we age,” he says. “The outermost superficial layer, the epidermis, exfoliates at the surface and is replaced and replenished by its deeper layers serving as the outer protective barrier.” While your skin peeling may be attributed to natural shedding, there may be other factors at play as well. “Dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, allergies, trauma from ultraviolet radiation, dry environments, dehydration, heat, chemicals or certain medications (think: retinoids) may also cause skin peeling,” Dr. Schmid says.

Often times skin peeling can be temporary, painless and harmless, but sometimes the loss of skin layers can link to a more serious skin condition. “Chronic peeling may be a sign of advanced sun damage or even skin cancer,” Dr. Schmid warns. When in doubt, seek out the advice of your dermatologist for a proper diagnosis before jumping into over-the-counter products and at-home care.


Caring for peeling skin isn’t necessarily black and white. The root cause can help determine the best plan of action. That said, there are a few approaches you can take that typically work across the board. “In most cases, peeling skin can be resolved with appropriate skin counseling and a quality skin care regimen that includes a gentle cleanser, antioxidants, a corrective moisturizer and sun protection,” Dr. Schmid says. If your budget allows, an in-office chemical peel may be beneficial. “Chemical peels may stimulate exfoliation, cell turnover and collagen production [at the surface level],” he says. Above all, addressing your peeling skin really boils down to introducing adequate moisture and reaching a proper balance. Whether it’s a cooling aloe vera or an uber-rich moisturizer, “hydration of the skin and a product that reinforces the barrier is imperative,” says Dr. Schmid.

how to care for peeling skin



Regardless of what’s causing your skin to peel, there are a few things you should avoid to not make matters worse. Dr. Schmid recommends steering clear from excessive bathing, hot water, and harsh cleansers, as all can cause skin drying and exacerbate the situation. Instead, stick to shorter showers with lukewarm water. When washing your hands, make sure the water is lukewarm versus scalding hot. Lastly, when opting for a face wash, reach for a mild formula that’s non-drying. We’re sharing a handful of the best cleansers that won’t strip your skin dry, here.

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