Body lotions often find their place in skincare during the winter months, the drier months. Some use it round the year to combat dry skin. After all, that whitish hue on the skin, that stretchy feel is not something that looks or feels okay. In fact, a body lotion does much more than smoothening out your outer skin. It gives your parched skin the moisture that it needs to stay healthy. It makes your skin soft and supple, preserves the natural elasticity of your skin, and makes it ready to absorb topical nutrients. A body lotion is a must for all seasons, not just the winter.
A lot goes on while finding the perfect body lotion for your skin. It has to moisturize your skin the right amount - not too oily and not too dry. It has to preserve the moisture and keep your skin soft all day long. Some added nutrients would be a plus. But most importantly, it should not cause any damage to your skin. Let’s look at these factors in some details.
Skin Type: If you have oily skin, you would probably want a lightweight body lotion that absorbs quickly. It has to be able to prevent excess oil production and provide good moisture to the skin, while not clogging your pores. Normal skin requires a body lotion that would preserve the natural moisture of the skin all day long. And people with dry skin needs intense moisturization. Based on the requirements of your skin, you may choose to use different body lotions during the different seasons in a year.
Consistency: Consistency of the lotion can sometimes be an indicator of the level of moisturization that the body lotion or the body milk may provide. Apart from that, a body lotion with runny consistency may get absorbed easily and can be a good post-shower lotion. Thicker lotions may stay on the skin a little longer and gradually seep in. They can be used at any time of the day, irrespective of when you are showering.
Beneficial Ingredients: There are way too many commercial body lotions with n-number of formulae. But before you purchase a body lotion, make sure it has some of the most beneficial ingredients like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids (AHA's), beeswax and botanical waxes, shea butter, ceramides, and fatty acids like lauric acids. These ingredients moisturize and hydrate your skin, strengthen your skin’s barrier, and make your skin smooth, soft, and supple. If you can find antioxidants and herbal extracts in the formula as well, then that’s the body lotion you want to bring home.
Harmful Ingredients: Unfortunately, many commercial body lotions are made with ingredients that are potentially bad for the skin. Especially if you have sensitive skin, stay clear of these ingredients: artificial color, artificial fragrance, parabens, sorbic acid, citric acid, benzyl alcohol, etc. The list cannot be made exhaustive. So, it would be best if you could check the irritancy rating and the comedogenicity of the lotion before you bought it.
Sunscreen: If you want to use the body lotion outdoors during day time, you could consider buying one which gives protection from UV rays, sunburn, and sun damage. SPF 30 sounds fair for a regular day out. Similarly, if you are using the lotion at night, it’s better to find one with antioxidants like Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E etc. which will prevent signs of aging.
A body lotion is not just a moisturizer. (Although, that reason should be good enough to include it in your skincare regimen.) The gentle massage that goes with applying the lotion prompts blood circulation to the skin area, keeping your skin naturally younger. Many lotions come with an aroma that stays on your skin mildly all day long. A body lotion keeps the natural moisture in and repels dust and pollutants away. A body lotion is your skin’s daily feed - don’t skip it.