Winter is the time of year when our skin often gets dry. The trip down the aisle for a moisturizer can prove daunting. There are skin moisturizer products ranging in price from $2 to $200. Can a $200 moisturizer really be a hundred times better than a $2 moisturizer? The key is to find a product that feels good and works on your skin.

If you have sensitive skin, you will want a fragrance-free moisturizer because perfumes can irritate the skin. The Cetaphil products are good because they are reasonably priced and fragrance-free. The Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion ($9.99 for 16 ounces) is good for all-around use and most people are happy with it.

For an even less expensive product, try regular old petroleum jelly ($2.00 for 10 ounces) or mineral oil ($3.99 for 16 ounces). Both are very good for holding moisture in the skin. If you do not like the way they feel on your skin, use a small amount. For the lips, try ChapStick ($1.29 for .15 ounces) or Carmex ($1.29 for .3 ounces). For the face, I would recommend Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 15 ($10.99 for 4 ounces). It feels less greasy on the skin and has the added sun protection.

Dry hands are the most common problem. The best and least expensive moisturizer is still the old reliable petroleum jelly. If you don’t like the feel, try Neutrogena Hand Cream ($3.49 for 2 ounces).

There are a couple of things you can do to avoid dry skin. Take shorter showers with warm, not hot, water. The hot water removes protective oils from the skin. Use a mild soap and apply moisturizer within five minutes of getting out of the shower. If you have persistent dry, itchy skin that you cannot resolve with over-the-counter moisturizer creams, you may have a more pressing problem. If your skin problem is causing you lack of sleep or is troublesome for more than one week, it’s a good idea to see a doctor.

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