cracked skin on fingers

Xerosis Cutis: Is My Skin Too Dry?

Xerosis Cutis is another form of dry skin that causes itching, scaling, cracking, and redness. Various factors, including environmental conditions, age, and genetics, contribute to its development. 

There is a possibility of infection and permanent damage to the skin in extreme cases. Therefore, finding the proper treatment for you based on your individual needs is essential. Read on to learn how you can treat this skin condition. 

Related: Home Remedies for Dry Skin: Lifestyle Changes for Prevention

What is Xerosis Cutis?

Xerosis Cutis is the medical diagnosis for skin that is abnormally dry. This is a common condition, especially in the elderly since the skin’s ability to retain moisture diminishes with age. 

Although Xerosis Cutis can occur almost anywhere on your skin, it most often occurs on the arms and legs. The skin can be itchy, dry, and can even appear scaly with white flakes. 

Is Eczema the Same as Xerosis Cutis?

At first glance, eczema and Xerosis Cutis might seem like the same thing. They both cause dryness, itching, and cracking of the skin. 

However, these conditions have some important differences: Eczema is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition often triggered by irritants or allergies. Xerosis Cutis, on the other hand, is a non-inflammatory condition caused by a lack of moisture in the skin. While both eczema and Xerosis Cutis can be frustrating and uncomfortable, understanding the difference between the two conditions can help to ensure that you get the proper treatment.

If you’re suffering from eczema, we have the right formula in our products to help treat your condition. Come shop with Soteri Skin today!

What Causes Xerosis Cutis?

Xerosis Cutis can have many causes. It could result from spending too much time in the sun or wind, using harsh soaps or detergents, having a history of eczema, or simply getting older. 

When skin becomes dry, it loses its elasticity and is more susceptible to cracking and irritation. In extreme cases, Xerosis Cutis can lead to infection. Maintaining hydration and moisturizing is key to preventing dry skin. 

Regular use of lotion or cream can help replenish the natural oils in the skin, keeping skin soft and supple. Additionally, using mild soaps and avoiding extended exposure to hot water or direct sunlight can also help to prevent Xerosis Cutis.

Will our products work with your skin condition? Read our FAQ page to find out. 

The Risk Factors & Triggers

Xerosis Cutis can affect anyone, but certain factors can increase your risk of developing the condition. Age is a common risk factor; as we age, our skin produces less oil, causing it to become drier. Other risk factors include:

  • Exposure to wind and sun
  • Hot showers
  • Harsh soaps
  • Medical conditions, such as diabetes and psoriasis

You can relieve Xerosis Cutis symptoms by doing several things. These include using gentle cleansers, applying moisturizer regularly, and avoiding long hot showers. Understanding the risk factors and taking simple precautions can help keep your skin healthy and hydrated.


cracked skin


What Are the Symptoms of Xerosis Cutis?


The most common symptom of Xerosis Cutis is itchiness. The skin may also appear red or inflamed and crack or bleed.

In severe cases, Xerosis Cutis can lead to secondary infections. Treatment for Xerosis Cutis typically involves using moisturizers and over-the-counter medications to relieve symptoms. 

Sometimes, a doctor may prescribe a more potent topical corticosteroid or oral medication. With proper treatment, Xerosis Cutis is usually not a severe condition. 

However, it can be both uncomfortable and inconvenient. Therefore, people with Xerosis Cutis should protect their skin from further irritation and avoid potential triggers.

When to Visit Your Doctor

While Xerosis Cutis is usually a harmless condition, there are a few cases where you should visit your doctor. If the dryness is accompanied peeling, a ring-shaped rash, or is oozing, a dermatologist should be seen as soon as possible.

In addition, if you have cracks or fissures in your skin, you should have them checked out, as they can become infected. Finally, if home treatment is not alleviating your symptoms, it's time to consult a doctor. They can prescribe medicated creams and ointments that will help to moisturize your skin and relieve the discomfort of Xerosis Cutis.

Related: 5 Tips for Managing Itchy, Flaky Skin from Dermatologist Xiaoxiao Li, MD

How Xerosis Cutis is Diagnosed

Xerosis Cutis is typically diagnosed through both a physical examination and a review of the patient’s medical history. The doctor will inspect the affected area and ask about symptoms. Other conditions may also be ruled out through a skin biopsy. 

Treatment for Xerosis Cutis usually involves using moisturizing creams or ointments to hydrate the skin. A variety of over-the-counter products can be used to manage the condition in most cases. However, severe cases may require prescription medication or light therapy.

How to Treat Xerosis Cutis


Below are some of the ways Xerosis Cutis can be treated:

Prescription Medications

Mild cases may be treated with over-the-counter moisturizers, while more severe cases may require prescription medications. Topical corticosteroids are commonly used to treat dry skin, and oral antihistamines may be recommended for patients who experience itchiness. In addition, phototherapy or light therapy may be recommended for patients who do not respond to other treatments.





Several types of moisturizers are available on the market, but products that contain hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and shea butter are effective in treating Xerosis Cutis. If unsure which moisturizer is best for you, speak to your healthcare provider or a skincare specialist.

Home Remedies

Fortunately, several home remedies can help to treat Xerosis Cutis and improve the appearance of the skin. One of the more effective home remedies is to take an oatmeal bath. Make sure to lock in that moisture afterwards by applying some BALANCING ACT. 

Other helpful treatments include using a humidifier, applying moisturizer immediately after bathing, and avoiding harsh soaps and detergents.

Related: Home Remedies for Dry Skin: Lifestyle Changes for Prevention

Xerosis Cutis: There is Hope

A dermatologist can diagnose and treat you if you experience any of these symptoms. In the meantime, there are things you can do at home to help soothe your dry skin. 

Regularly apply a heavy moisturizer, drink plenty of water, use a humidifier, and avoid hot showers. With some effort, you can get your dry skin under control and improve your quality of life.