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The Secret, Nighttime, Moisture-Robbing Enemy Making Your Body Dry


Summer was great. And also terrible, because even though I didn’t have to worry about moisturizing that much, I felt greasy all the time. I’ve been very much looking forward to winter in order to dry out a little—and also because I’m from Chicago and feel perfectly at home in the biting cold.

It seems, unfortunately, that I have overcorrected. The temperature dropped below 50, radiators around the Northeast lit up, and now my entire body is dry and rough to the touch. No amount of body oil topped with Susanne Kaufmann Body Butter will do the trick. (Yes, I even apply onto slightly damp skin because I’ve been playing this game my whole damn life.) It was about a week into this flakey misery that I remembered something I read nearly four years ago. There’s a secret, silent enemy in the mix of my moisturizing routine. And it’s not the body butter. No, the enemy is my very cozy, wonderfully roomy, finally-cold-enough-for-them college sweats. Those Go ‘Cats flannels, man…they’re sucking the moisture right out of my skin. Because that’s what cotton things do! It’s the thirstiest fabric, stealing moisture away all through the night. And also all of that expensive body butter I keep talking about. (Seriously, try it, it’s so good.)

Anyway—being the solutions-oriented moisturizer I am, I started running through fabrics: Polyester is out for being flammable and bad for the environment. Silk would get ruined. Athleticware could definitely make an appearance, but it’s just so constraining. Short of pulling a Harry Brant and Saran Wrapping myself before a brisk jog, I’m somewhat at a loss. Low-lift research points me towards rayon, a fabric that actually repels water. Add spandex to that and you're basically golden. Lucky for you, there’s this very chic Eberjey set that hits all the marks. (Target’s also chockfull of the combo.) Throw it on top of your very slick body post-shower-and-lotion a few times a week to keep all that good moisture in. Add Saran Wrap in for special occasions. See you in the summer, sweats.

—Emily Ferber

Photo by Tom Newton.