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Why Is My Skin Peeling and Dry?

Peeling dry skin is one of the most annoying skin concerns to deal with. When your skin feels tight and looks rough and scaly, your self-confidence drops off a cliff. 

Trying to conceal dry and peeling skin can make things worse. Makeup can cling to the dry patches and make your complexion look even flakier. 

So what causes dry skin and peeling? And what can you do about it?

That’s what we’re going to reveal in this expert guide. 

Why Is My Skin Peeling?

Skin peeling is usually the result of the top layer of skin flaking away due to inflammation, allergies, or irritation. The very top layer of dead skin peels away from the other cells. 

Some people are more likely to experience dry and peeling skin than others. So what causes dry skin?

Dry and Flaky Skin on Face Causes

There are many potential causes for peeling skin on the face and areas of the body. Before you can put together a rescue plan for your skin, you need to determine the cause.

Let’s take a closer look at the most common causes of peeling skin. 


If you’ve spent a summer’s day outside and come home with a fiery red complexion, you’ll already know that sunburn is one of the leading causes of peeling skin. The sun’s UV rays damage the skin cells, disrupting the function of the top layer of skin. 

Sunburn initially appears red and sore before entering a peeling stage as the dead, damaged cells flake off the skin. 

Prevention is the best way to stop this type of skin peeling. Apply a high SPF suncream to prevent sunburn. Sun exposure is also one of the main causes of skin ageing, so you’ll help your skin look younger by protecting it from UV rays. 

Dry Skin

Dry skin is a common skin concern that affects lots of people. While some people experience dry skin more than others, certain things can make the condition worse. 

Air conditioning units are notorious for removing moisture from the air and creating a low humidity environment that worsens dry, itchy skin. Hot showers and harsh skincare products can also strip the skin of moisture. 

When the skin is dry, it can become itchy and feel tight. Eventually, the dead, dry skin cells start to peel. 

Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp is known as dandruff. But this condition can also affect the face and other areas of the body. It’s caused by yeast that grows on your skin, provoking an immune response. 

Affected areas can feel itchy and sometimes result in flaky patches and peeling skin. This condition typically affects people with oily skin. 

Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is a skin reaction caused by direct contact with an irritant or allergen. 

When your skin comes into contact with something you’re allergic to, it can cause an immune response that appears as a rash. The skin can become dry and flaky, with some people also experiencing small blisters. 

Allergic contact dermatitis can be triggered by certain plants, fabrics, or through active ingredients in skincare products.

Irritants can also cause contact dermatitis. Harsh soaps and skincare products containing alcohol can irritate the skin and cause contact dermatitis. 


Around one in 10 Australians will develop eczema at some point during their lifetime. This condition can cause the skin to become itchy, red, and dry. The inflammation can also cause peeling in the patches where the eczema is most severe. 

Eczema is generally a chronic condition that worsens during the winter months. The condition causes the skin barrier to be less effective at keeping out irritants and bacteria. 

If you suffer from eczema, you’re more likely to experience contact dermatitis due to allergens and irritants coming into contact with the skin. 


Psoriasis is another skin condition that can cause flaking and scaling. It usually appears as red patches of thick skin. For most people with psoriasis, the condition causes flaking of the skin rather than peeling. 

Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition. Part of the immune system becomes overactive and attacks healthy cells. While most people shed skins cells every 28 days, cell turnover for those with psoriasis is much faster.

Like eczema, the best way to treat psoriasis is to develop a skincare regime that helps control and prevent breakouts. In addition, your doctor may prescribe topical steroid creams and ointments to reduce the inflammation. 

How To Treat Peeling Skin at Home?

The best treatment for peeling skin depends on the cause. You should always allow the skin to heal and not be tempted to pull off flaking and peeling skin. 

You can prevent peeling skin by keeping your skin nourished and hydrated. Here are some top tips you can try at home. 

Pat Your Skin Dry After Showering

Rubbing your skin dry with a towel after a shower can irritate and dry out the skin. If your skin is already peeling, rubbing will cause it to become more likely to peel. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, you should “blot your skin gently dry with a towel.” Be gentle with your skin to protect it from dryness and flaking. 

Moisturise Every Day

The best time to apply a moisturiser is after a shower or bath. As soon as you step out of the shower, water starts to evaporate from your skin. By using a moisturiser straight away, you can lock in the moisture.

Humidify is one of the best moisturisers to keep dry skin hydrated. It provides intense hydration and aids the function of the skin’s protective barrier. As a result, your skin will feel softer and look smoother. It’s a great product to soothe dry skin.

Use a Gentle Exfoliant

Gentle exfoliation can sometimes be beneficial for dry and peeling skin. However, you should not use any exfoliation products on extremely dry skin or sunburnt skin. This can make the peeling worse and delay the healing process.

Consider adding a gentle exfoliation product like Defy to your skincare regime. Defy is a triple acid exfoliation treatment that uses fullerenes to allow active ingredients to penetrate deeper into the skin. Applying a small amount each evening can help prevent dry skin. 

Best In-Clinic Treatments for Dry Skin

While at-home skincare products can help, professional non-invasive dry skin treatments can provide a more dramatic improvement.

Let’s take a look at the best in-clinic treatment options for dry and peeling skin. 

Beauty Boosters

Topical moisturisers and serums can help to keep the skin nourished. But they can’t penetrate the layers of skin to provide deep hydration. 

The Beauty Booster treatment is one of the most effective ways to achieve lasting skin hydration. It involves multiple micro-injections of tiny amounts of dermal filler, vitamins, and other active ingredients spread evenly across the skin. 

A session takes around 30 minutes and is usually part of a three-part treatment plan. You can expect results to improve for three weeks after each session as the active ingredients rejuvenate the skin from within. 

Medical Microdermabrasion

Microdermabrasion is a gentle treatment that is great for dry and dull skin. It’s a two-part treatment that starts with exfoliation. 

A diamond head handpiece buffs away impurities and exfoliates the treated area. The exfoliation process breaks down the barrier of dead skin cells that stop your skincare products from penetrating deeper into the skin. Once the first stage is complete, a serum infusion or mask is applied. 

Microdermabrasion is one of the most popular lunchtime ‘tweakments’. There’s no downtime, and you’ll see instant results. When you leave the clinic, you’ll have a healthy, glowing complexion. 

Medical Grade Peels

Medical Grade Peels can effectively treat various conditions and concerns, including dry and flaky skin. The treatment doesn’t take long and can be tailored to your unique skin concerns. 

Chemical peels work by removing the top layer of the skin while also cleansing the pores. Your skin will appear brighter, smoother, and more healthy. 

There is little to no downtime for medical-grade peels. Superficial skin concerns like dry skin usually respond well to gentler peels. Our b clinic specialists will recommend the right chemical peel for you during your initial consultation. 

Treating Skin Dryness at b clinic

Dry skin affects most people. But that doesn’t make it any less frustrating when it happens to you. Health and skin conditions can cause dry skin, including a rare genetic disorder known as peeling skin syndrome. So it’s important to see a medical professional if your stubborn dry skin doesn’t improve. 

Prevention is often the best way to keep peeling skin at bay. Regular moisturising and exfoliation should be an integral part of your skincare regime. 

Here at b clinic, we offer a range of cosmetic treatments to combat dry skin and help you achieve a youthful, glowing complexion. Book a free consultation today to discover the best treatments options for you.