February 12, 2020 at 11:00PM by CWC
For years, dermatologists have been telling me that the best thing I can do for the dry skin that plagues my entire body during this time of year is slather it with shower oil. In theory, this is good advice, but there’s one problem: I hate it. I’ve tried dozens of these oils in pursuit of softer skin (including the ones that everyone else on the internet seems to swear by), and they all leave me feeling slick, greasy, and gross. Considering that the bare minimum I’ve come to expect from my body cleanser is that it leaves me feeling clean, this just isn’t something I’ve ever been able to get on board with.
But then—but then!— I discovered L’Occitane Cleansing And Softening Shower Oil With Almond Oil ($25). Someone actually gave me a bottle of the stuff for Hanukkah in 2018, but it sat unopened under my sink for a year because, like I said, I hate shower oil. But when I ran out of my usual body wash a few weeks ago and my only choice was to either make a grab for the L’Occitane shower oil or trek to CVS naked and sopping wet, I decided to give it a try. (What can I say, I’m about that can-do attitude.) And let me tell you, it was unlike any product I have ever used in my life.
What starts as an oil somehow turns into a frothy foam as you lather it on (science!), which means you get the nourishing properties of a shower oil with the soapy texture of a body wash. Its star ingredient is sweet almond oil, which is packed with omega 6 fatty acids to leave skin feeling soft, supple, and smelling like heaven. Since oils are able to penetrate skin more deeply than creams, lotions, and gels thanks to the fact that they’re lipophilic (it’s why derms love ’em so much for dry skin), this particular wash is so hydrating that I don’t even need to use lotion after. It’s a three-for-the-price-of-one product—or really, four for the price of one, since it works great as a shaving cream, too—that has freed up a whole lot of space in my bathroom. And earned me a pat on the back from pros who will finally approve of my dry skin routine.
Dealing with dry skin elsewhere? Here’s how a derm wants you to handle: