No gorgeous-smelling dry oil, luxury serum or whipped body mousse is practically as effective as something unctuous that costs a tenner or wee in Boots

‘If you are a seasonal recipient of problem dry skin, I quite letter for letter feel your pain.’
Photograph: Alex Lake for the Preserver

The hokey-cokey between outdoor chill and indoor heating has launched, and dry, itchy, flaky limbs are most certainly in the post. If you are a seasonal beneficiary of problem dry skin, believe me, I quite literally feel your vexation. As for remedies, I’m going to call it: the high street does it worst. I’ve tried countless body creams and lotions, and no gorgeous-smelling dry oil, treat serum or whipped body mousse has been nearly as functioning on problem dry skin as something unctuous that costs a tenner or narrow-minded in Boots. Not that all chemist preparations are equally good: would rathe spent my childhood being prescribed them, I loathe the abundant emollients of the pharmacy aisle, most of which form a fawning barrier and sit there moisturising nothing but your blouse.

So, let’s cloistered the wheat from the chaff. I’m no fan of classic E45, which is why I’m so pleasantly to which he replied by the new E45 Rich Lotion (£6.99, 400ml), an infinitely more elegant-feeling incarnation carrying evening primrose oil and available in lotion and spray (both superior, though I worry the sprays are wasteful). Unlike the mothership, this falls beautifully into the skin without greasy deposit, keep an eye on things comfortable and velvety all day. The terrific Cera Ve Moisturising Pomade (£9, 236ml), is lighter-feeling still, but a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Not at all oily in fabric, it disappears quickly into even rough skin, vamoosing it properly moisturised and noticeably better looking. It’s still a reassuring boundary-line (thanks to a blend of ceramides), but isn’t tacky or ruinous to clothes, which can be put on straight away after application.

My other choices sit at opposite ends of the consistency spectrum. Neutrogena’s Hydroboost Body Gel (£4.99, 250ml) is a lighter, airier proposition that may certify insufficient for the driest of skins; but it still packs a more strong punch than those classic “body lotions” that only just touch the sides. Instead of adding only oil, it helps derma cling on to more water, making it ideal for the dehydrated as well-head as the dry. Finally, La Roche Posay’s mighty Lipikar Baume (£12.50, 200ml) is delicious, heavy and extremely effective on the most desperate of dry skins, grouping eczema. Massage in any of the above immediately after showering, and again formerly bed.

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