Ashy skin can happen to anyone who gets dry skin, even children. This condition appears more obviously on people with darker skin tones. Luckily it’s not a serious skin condition, and it’s easily treated with proper skincare.
If your melanin-rich child has ashy skin, make sure you’re using products with their skincare needs in mind. Melababe offers rich moisturizers and other natural skincare products to keep your child’s melanin-rich skin soft and ash-free.
What is Ashy Skin?
Ashy skin describes extremely dry skin conditions on people with melanin-rich skin. Everyone experiences dry skin, but dry skin’s white and gray color is more noticeable in people with darker skin tones. Ashy skin can occur anywhere on your child’s body but is most commonly found on knees, elbows, arms, and legs.
Along with appearing white, gray, or ashy, your child’s skin may also:
- Have bumps or feel rough to the touch
- Have thin lines along your skin that can peel, crack, or bleed
A lack of moisture causes dry, ashy skin. Your child is more at risk of developing ashy skin if you live in dry climates, including the Southwest and southern California. The lack of humidity in these climates can make skin dry out faster. Cold, winter weather and taking prolonged hot showers or baths can also make your skin dry out.
Certain medical conditions like eczema, contact dermatitis, and psoriasis can cause or worsen the appearance of ashy skin. If your child has one of these conditions, you may need to work with a doctor to treat and reduce inflammation from the underlying condition to improve your child’s ashy skin.
How to Reduce Ashy Skin
There are simple actions you can take to keep your child’s melanin-rich skin healthy and ash-free.
Use Natural Skin Care Products
Some personal products, including shower gels, deodorant soaps, and lotions, contain chemicals that are harsh on the skin. Ingredients like alcohol, hard detergents, and salicylic acid can dry skin out. Try using natural skincare for children instead. Natural products avoid moisture-stripping ingredients. They gently cleanse and moisturize your child’s skin.
Use Lukewarm Water for Your Baths and Showers
Reduce the time your child spends taking hot showers and only use lukewarm water for their baths. Prolonged exposure to hot water dries skin out by stripping it of its natural oils. Try limiting your child’s time in the shower or bathtub to 10-15 minutes to help prevent dry skin.
Stay Hydrated and Consider Using Humidifiers
Skin can dry more easily if you’re not drinking enough water. If your child doesn’t like drinking plain water, try adding fresh fruit, fun ice cubes, or calorie-free flavoring to their water to improve their hydration.
Changes in temperature and humidity can worsen dry skin. You can use a humidifier in your child’s bedroom overnight to help their skin stay hydrated. Humidifiers increase the moisture in the air and help combat drier air in winter.
Don’t Scratch Dry Skin
It can be tempting to scratch dry, itchy skin to relieve the discomfort. But scratching dry skin can worsen inflammation and the ashy appearance of skin. When dry skin feels itchy, apply lotion or use moisturizers with occlusive ingredients, like petroleum jelly, beeswax, or lanolin to seal in moisture and act as a physical barrier against irritants.
Healthy skin requires occasional exfoliation. Exfoliating removes dead skin cells from the skin’s surface, allows moisturizers to penetrate more efficiently, and lessens the appearance of ashy skin. You don’t need to use harsh materials or ingredients to exfoliate your child’s skin. Try having them use a textured loofah or scrub once a week while showering to exfoliate.
Apply the Right Moisturizer
Skip using lotions and instead apply moisturizers like creams or oils for better melanin-rich skin nourishment. Using a body oil or body cream after your child bathes helps their skin retain more moisture than lotion. This is especially important in the winter months when the air is drier.
Apply body oils directly after a shower or bath while the skin is still damp. This helps it absorb quickly and penetrate the skin deeper. A body cream can be applied to the skin at any point and added to the body oil for extra skin nourishment.
Establish a Skincare Routine
Teaching your child how to properly care for and moisturize their skin is just as important as other habits, like brushing their teeth. Proper skincare for melanin-rich children means showing them what products to use, the order to use them, how much of each product to use, and how often they should be using each product.
Treat and Prevent Ashy Skin With Melababe
Avoid ashy skin by keeping your child’s skin moisturized. Dry skin is the reason behind your child’s grey ashy appearance and is easier to see on darker skin tones. Keep their skin properly moisturized by using naturally emollient ingredients and avoiding skin-drying ingredients like alcohol.
Melababe offers natural skincare for melanin-rich skin. Our products are designed to heal and protect melanin-rich skin. Explore our skincare products and find the right ones for your child.