Save 20% Storewide use code SUM20 — Details »
The Summer Forecast is in | g2g »


Flaky skin is most commonly skin that’s too dry, although it can occasionally be a sign of another skin condition called seborrheic dermatitis. Most cases of flakiness come from skin that lacks moisture. Dry, flaky skin is especially common in the winter months when the air is dry and people spend more time indoors where their skin is exposed to dry heat.

What Causes It?

Dry, flaky skin is caused by a lack of moisture in the outermost layer of the skin called the epidermis. The epidermis consists of clusters of skin cells that are held together by lipids. These lipids help to prevent loss of water from the surface of the skin. Some people don’t have enough of these lipids or the lipid layer is damaged, which makes it difficult for their skin to hold on to moisture. When this is the case, skin cells in the epidermis aren’t shed in an orderly manner. Instead, they build up and cause skin to look flaky and feel rough to the touch.

more information

Some people are genetically prone towards dry skin. For others, the lipid layer that protects the skin from moisture loss becomes damaged when they use harsh soaps and cleansing products. Damage can also come from bathing frequently in hot water or exposing skin to dry conditions and temperature extremes. Some medical conditions, medications and dietary deficiencies, especially a low-fat diet, can contribute to dry skin. Skin needs essential fatty acids to make lipids that protect the skin against moisture loss.


To reduce flakiness, it’s important to treat the underlying problem - dry skin. People who live in a dry home will benefit from getting a humidifier to add moisture to the air. Other simple ways to reduce moisture loss is to avoid using soaps and harsh cleansers that damage the delicate layer that protects skin from dryness. Choose a product that gently cleanses and removes surface dirt and debris without stripping skin of its natural protective oils. Look for added ingredients that gently loosen and exfoliate dead skin cells that cause skin to look rough and flaky.

After cleansing, apply a gentle moisturizer formulated for dry skin. Many products contain natural botanicals that help to soothe dry skin and restore moisture balance. Many also contain antioxidants that protect skin against damage. Always apply a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 that protects against UVA and UVB rays for added protection against the sun’s damaging rays. Sun exposure can worsen dryness and flakiness. Select a nourishing sunscreen with antioxidant vitamins that’s specifically formulated to meet the needs of very dry, flaky skin.

Gentle exfoliation instantly removes dead skin cells that cause skin to look flaky. Some people use exfoliating pads, but these can be too rough for some skin types. A gentler alternative is skin polishers which contain very fine particles of jojoba to lift away dead skin cells that cause flaking and reveal the healthier skin underneath. Look for ingredients like allantoin to reduce skin irritation and redness. Exfoliate once or twice a week in addition to your regular cleansing and moisturizing program to help skin look smoother and less flaky.

The Bottom Line?

Most skin flakiness comes from the build-up of dead skin cells in the outer layer of the skin. This happens when the protective lipid layer is damaged and skin loses too much moisture. Fortunately, this problem can be corrected by using a gentle cleanser made for dry skin and applying a moisturizer formulated for the special needs of dry, dehydrated skin. Using a skin polisher like SkinMedica Skin Polisher once or twice a week also helps to keep flakiness in check.


refine by

Special Features

Customer Favorites (201)

Natural (191)

Ships Free (121)

New Arrivals (26)

Quick Fixes (23)

Supersized Beauty (12)

Limited Edition (10)

Award Winning (9)

Special Value (9)

Multi-Taskers (8)


Paraben-Free (427)

Natural (199)

Sulfate-Free (53)


3LAB (3)

African Botanics (2)

AHAVA (15)

Alchimie Forever (1)

AminoGenesis (1)

Anthony Logistics for Men (2)


Art Of Shaving (7)

ASAP (1)

Astara (1)


Avene (9)

B. Kamins (3)


Baby Quasar (1)

bareMinerals (1)

Barielle (2)

Billy Jealousy (2)

Bioelements (9)

Bliss (5)

Boots No7 (19)

Borghese (2)

Caudalie Paris (18)

Celazome (2)

CellCeuticals (2)

Cellex-C (3)

Circ-Cell Skincare (1)

Clark's Botanicals (1)

Coola (1)

CosMedix (2)

DCL Dermatologic Cosmetic Laboratories (5)

DDF (3)

Decleor (12)

DermaQuest (2)

Dermelect Cosmeceuticals (1)

dr. brandt (4)

Dr. Dennis Gross (3)

Elemental Herbology (8)

Elemis (7)

Elizabeth Arden (11)

EmerginC (2)

Epionce (2)

Erno Laszlo (13)

Eve Lom (5)

Evian Spray (4)

Exuviance by NeoStrata (2)

FarmHouse Fresh (9)

First Aid Beauty (8)


Gly Derm (2)

Glytone (1)

H2O Plus (22)

Hampton Sun (2)

Indermica (2)

iS Clinical (2)

Jack Black (4)

Jan Marini (2)

Juara Skincare (2)

Juice Beauty (4)

June Jacobs Spa (5)

Jurlique (20)

Karuna (2)

Kate Somerville (2)

Kerstin Florian (13)

Kinara (1)

Kinerase (2)

Koh Gen Do (7)


L'Occitane (8)

La Roche Posay (8)

Lab Series (2)

LaVanila Laboratories (2)


MD Formulations (3)

Menscience Androceuticals (1)

Miracle Skin Transformer (1)

Molton Brown (10)

Murad (7)

Mustela (4)

Neocutis (2)

NeoStrata (1)

Neova (3)

NuFace (1)

NUXE (8)

Obagi (5)

Ole Henriksen (2)

Olie Biologique (2)

Orico London (9)

Osmosis Pur Medical Skincare (2)

Osmotics Cosmeceuticals (2)

patchology (1)

Paula's Choice (2)


Perricone MD (3)

Peter Thomas Roth (10)

Pevonia Botanica (1)

pH Advantage (1)

philosophy (5)

Phyto (2)

Phytomer (4)

Pomega5 (2)

Prevage (2)

Pur Minerals (1)

Radical Skincare (5)

REN Clean Skincare (11)

RMS Beauty (2)

Rodial (7)

Russell Organics (3)


Serious Skincare (1)

Shaveworks (1)

Sjal (1)

Skin Authority (5)

SkinCeuticals (4)

SkinMedica (2)

skyn ICELAND (4)

Snowberry (3)

Sothys (5)

suki (8)

Sundari (3)


Tammy Fender (2)

Tensage (1)

Thalgo (5)

Tracie Martyn (1)

True Isaac Mizrahi (1)

Vichy (4)

WEI (2)

Whish (6)

Wilma Schumann (5)

Yonka (10)

Yu-Be (2)

Z. Bigatti (1)

ZIRH (2)


$5 To $24.99 (109)

$25 To $29.99 (61)

$30 To $39.99 (115)

$40 To $59.99 (156)

$60 To $299.99 (129)

Skin Type

All Skin Types (312)

Dry Skin (148)

Combination Skin (25)

Sensitive Skin (25)

Oily Skin (6)

Product Type

Cream (223)

Lotion (56)

Gel (47)

Serum (46)

Oil (43)

Spray (Non-aerosol) (31)

Balm (21)

Aerosol (15)

Pad / Wipe (10)

Bar (7)

Sun Care

SPF 15-29 (17)

SPF 30 Plus (8)

SPF Under 15 (1)


For Her (5)

Under $35 (3)

Bath and Body (1)

Limited-Edition (1)

Who Is It For

Baby/Child (6)

Hair Care

Moisturizing (2)

Clarifying (1)

Hair Type

All Hair Types (2)

Flakiness Products

Sort results by:
Soothes, refreshes and moisturizes the skin at any time of the day.
$34.00 $36.00 value
13.4 oz | CPPK02
In Stock
Provides an instant burst of radiance and keeps you looking and feeling fresh throughout the day.
$64.00 $67.00 value
In Stock
A hydrating mist that refreshes the skin and senses.
3.3oz | JQ008
In Stock
This lightweight hydrator leaves skin feeling fresh and dewy.
$60.00 $64.00 value
1.69oz | RC079
In Stock
Intensely hydrates and soothes all skin types, even the most dehydrated.
1oz | CP105
In Stock
A natural, soap-free cleanser that removes makeup and impurities.
5oz | CP133
In Stock
This eye balm is formulated as your nighttime emollient with hard-core hydrating botanicals and nutritives.
REG $37.95  NOW $26.56
0.5 oz | KI009
In Stock
A rich, nurturing moisturizer that repairs dry skin.
$98.00 $122.00 value
4.3oz | JQ022
In Stock
Soothes, refreshes and moisturizes the skin at any time of the day.
6.7 oz | CP113
In Stock
Gel-cream formula that instantly soothes, hydrates and fortifies.
1.3oz | CP107
In Stock
Replenishment for dehydrated or depleted skin.
1.17oz | RC029
In Stock
The perfect mask to fix dehydrated and irritated skin within 10 minutes.
2oz | FC016
In Stock

Now only $99 | Clarisonic Pedi. Get Yours »
FREE Smoothing Marine Cream ($34 Value). Details »
FREE Kura Intuitif Creme ($43 Value). Details »
Skin Care Regimen »
2 steps to a new you — My Beauty Advisor




HACKER SAFE certified sites prevent over 99.9% of hacker crime.
BBBOnLine Reliability Seal
TRUSTe online privacy certification
Stella Service