A consistent skin care regimen leads to objective and subjective improvements in dry human skin: investigator-blinded randomized clinical trial

J Dermatolog Treat. 2022 Feb;33(1):300-305. doi: 10.1080/09546634.2020.1751037. Epub 2021 Jun 22.


Background: Dry, itchy skin can lower quality of life (QoL) and aggravate skin diseases. Moisturizing skin care products can have beneficial effects on dry skin. However, the role of a daily skin care routine is understudied.

Objective: To understand how daily skin care with a mild cleanser and moisturizer impacts skin health and patients' QoL, in dry skin population.

Methods: A randomized, investigator-blinded study of 52 participants with moderate to severe dry skin. The treatment group (n = 39) used mild cleanser and moisturizer twice daily for two weeks whereas the control group (n = 13) used mild cleanser without moisturizer. Total Clinical Score (TCS; erythema, scale and fissures), Visual Dryness Score (VDS) and subjective itch-related quality of life (ItchyQoL) were collected.

Results: The treatment group showed significantly more improvement in TCS and VDS compared to the control group after two weeks. Among the three components of the ItchyQoL (symptoms, functioning, and emotions), symptom showed significantly greater improvement in the treatment compared to the control group. Over 80% of participants in the treatment group agreed that the regimen led to decrease in dryness/pruritus and improved skin texture.

Conclusions: A consistent skin care regimen should be an integral component of management of dry skin.

Keywords: Dry skin; atopic dermatitis; moisturizer; pruritus; quality of life; xerosis.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Emollients* / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Quality of Life*
  • Skin
  • Skin Care
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Emollients