Urea is the best treatment for dry skin

Recommended by independent experts – Urea for the treatment of dry skin

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When it comes to treating patients and giving advice on specialist conditions doctors often turn to trusted medical bodies and their latest research for advice.

Dry skin (or xerosis cutis) is a common skin complaint and affects approximately 10 million people across Germany. And yet surprisingly, until recently, there was no standardized approach on how best to treat the condition.

This article identifies and examines recent findings in the area of dry skin treatment.

Medical experts agree on the best way to treat dry skin

Research into urea for dry skin
Medical experts now agree on the best way to treat dry skin

In 2018, a group of renowned physicians published a medical paper on the ‘Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis cutis’. The report summarizes the latest research findings in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of dry skin and gives doctors practical advice on how best to treat the condition.

Urea as the gold standard treatment for dry skin

The paper, written in German, states that dry skin can – in principle - be treated effectively. The decisive factor in the effectiveness of dry skin treatment is choosing the appropriate care product.

close up of dry skin
Xerosis cutis: Internal and external factors can disturb skin’s moisture balance and lead to very dry skin

Moisturising should involve a combination of hydrating and lipid-replenishing ingredients formulated to restore skin’s natural barrier function in the best possible way and prevent skin from drying out further.

The paper explains that, “based on the available scientific data, urea is the gold standard for the therapy of xerosis cutis." 1

Urea has the advantage of being effective on two fronts: as a natural moisturising factor it binds moisture into the outermost layers of skin; it also supports desquamation which is the natural process by which skin sheds dead skin cells. Healthy desquamation is linked to smooth skin.

Eucerin scientists were the first to effectively include Urea in a dermo-cosmetic product, and now have more than 25 years’ experience of maximizing the benefits of Urea in skincare formulas: experience that includes more than 30 clinical and dermatological studies involving some 10,000 volunteers.

Urea is even more effective when combined with other moisturisers

The ‘Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis cutis’ paper also explains that when urea is combined with other moisturising ingredients and lipids, the effect is even better: "The combination of urea with ceramides, NMF and glycerol shows a significantly better effect than the effect of urea or the vehicle alone." 2

Urea is a key ingredient in many Eucerin formulas where it is often combined with Ceramides, other NMFs and Glycerol. These formulas include:


The plus in UreaRepair PLUS

The lotions and creams in the Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS range offer people with dry skin exactly what the independent expert paper recommends. The formulas include

The range is clinically and dermatologically proven to offer immediate and 48h dry skin relief.3

Urea & 17 other natural moisturising factors

Help skin to attract and bind in moisture thereby improving the symptoms of dry skin.


Repair and strengthen the skin barrier and thus reduce moisture loss.

Urea for dry skin: dry skin v moisturised skin illustration
Urea binds water into the outermost layers of skin and, at the same time, breaks down the connections between dead skin cells - this promotes desquamation and ensures a smoother skin surface.
Natural moisturising factors bind moisture into skin
Urea is one of several Natural Moisturizing Factors in skin. Like urea, they pull water into the outermost layers of skin. This prevents dehydration, dandruff and skin damage.

1 Augustin M et al., Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis Cutis. JDDG, July 2018: Suppl 4, Volume 16.

2 Weber TM et al., J Clin Aesthet Dermatol 2012, 5:29–39.

3 Beiersdorf. Data on file

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