A man and his penis are the best of friends. That’s why when a man finds dry skin on his penile shaft, he can feel a little more than just uncomfortable; he can get anxious worrying about what’s causing his delicate skin to get flaky on him. Thankfully, most causes of dry penile skin are harmless and can be easily remedied. It may take a few days, but skin can be supple and soft once again with a few tips.

Let’s start with the symptoms of dry skin on the penile shaft. Obviously, the skin is dry! It may also be flaky, peeling, or cracked and rough. There can also be a loss of sensation or conversely, pain when anything comes in contact with the skin. Redness and skin darkening can also accompany dry penile skin.

Now, let’s talk causes and how to deal. Here are a few of the most reported causes of dry skin on the penile shaft and how to treat them:

1) He’s Got the Skinny Jeans Blues – Too tight pants, underwear, or shorts can cause chaffing, which can irritate the delicate penis skin, causing it to become dry and rough. The fix? Loosen up! Trade in the European fit for a flattering straight leg and give man's best friend a little room to breathe and hang out. This will not only reduce the friction against the groin but will also keep the area airy, which keeps the penis cool and dry.

2) Harsh, Perfumed Cleansers (aka “The Axe Effect”) – Sometimes smelling six-layers-deep of Drakkar Noir isn't a good thing. Ignore the men's commercials promising various claims of attractiveness with smelly "manly” body washes. Instead, use something gentle and natural for the body and especially for delicate penile skin. Read labels and stay away from Harsh soaps containing sodium lauryl sulfates (SLS), lye, polypropylene, and triclosan.

3) Allergies -- Allergies to lotions, condoms, spermicide, laundry detergents, fabrics, or other personal care products have been known to cause dry skin on the penile shaft. Companion symptoms of allergy include sneezing, a runny nose, wheezing, and watery eyes. Pop a Benadryl and wash the area with warm water. Use a topical cream if looking for immediate relief.

4) Could Be Candida – Candida, also known as yeast infections, can cause not only cause dry skin on the penile shaft but can also bring about an angry rash, swelling around the head of the penis, thick smelly discharge under the foreskin, and white patches on the skin. Don’t even think about sex during this time and just urinating can be excruciating. Use an OTC anti-fungal cream on the entire affected area (see the Pharmacist for help) until all symptoms are gone. Also, declare the area a “no activity” zone until the infection is completely cleared up as well.

5) Going Dry on the Fly – Either hand solo or with a partner, prolonged intimate contact without proper lubrication can set a man up for a nasty friction burn resulting in dry penile skin. In the future – use lube! To get back to good, call a sex sabbatical and then moisturize the penis with a specially formulated penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which has been clinically proven safe and mild for skin). Fully of rich moisturizers and emollients like vitamin E and Shea butter, this type of cream is made to calm dry skin and repair it. Other vitamins like A, C, and D are an added boon as they are known to be skin softeners and rejuvenators, helping the dry penile skin bounce back to normal quickly. All men should make this step a part of their daily hygiene habits!