While dry skin and dehydrated skin can share many of the same characteristics, such as tightness, roughness, flaking, scaling, redness and sensitivity, they are quite different skin concerns. Dry skin generally refers to skin lacking in oil. Dehydrated skin is skin lacking in moisture - it is not so much a skin type as a skin condition. Even oily and combination skin can be dehydrated. Dehydrated skin occurs when the protective uppermost layer of the skin, known as the stratum corneum, is lacking in moisture. Some of the signs of dehydrated skin to look out for are itchy skin, dullness, dark circles under the eyes and the increased appearance of wrinkles.
What causes dehydrated skin?
The causes of dehydrated skin can be more than your skin lacking in moisture or water. It can be caused by environmental factors, lifestyle habits, diet, makeup, incorrect product use and even the weather. Factors include prolonged exposure to the sun, cold wind, air conditioning and heating, all of which can cause moisture to evaporate from the skin. An excessive lifestyle that includes alcohol, too much caffeine, smoking, lack of sleep, a poor diet and even lots of sweating from exercise can serve to dry out skin. Dehydrated skin can be aggravated by topical skincare, i.e. using incorrect products for your skin.
Dehydrated skin symptoms
So what does dehydrated skin actually look like? Here is a list of the symptoms of dehydrated skin to look out for:
- Dark circles under the eyes
- Sunken eyes
- ‘Shadows’ around the face (especially under the eyes and around the nose)
- Increased incidence or appearance of fine lines and surface wrinkles
How to care for dehydrated skin?
Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day is key. As a guide, try to drink at least eight glasses of water per day which equates to approximately 2 litres. Perhaps create a mental schedule of when to drink, for example when you wake up, with all your meals and before you go to bed. Some other lifestyle tips to help you to remember to drink water are to keep a reusable bottle of water with you during the day, and if you don’t like the taste of water it can be flavoured with a slice of lemon or infused with other fruit. You should also drink water before, during and after a workout to replenish water lost through sweat. How much water is right for you to drink does depend on your body weight, your lifestyle and your activity levels. It is best to consult your doctor if you are unsure.
Another way of keeping hydrated is to eat more water-rich vegetable and fruits, such as watermelon, cucumbers, bananas, strawberries, spinach, iceberg lettuce, radishes and celery. Look to add these foods into your balanced diet. Additionally, this skin type can benefit from skincare that contains ingredients such as hyaluronic acid. This acid is naturally occurring in the skin, and adding more of this through your skincare regimen helps the hyaluronic acid bind to water and retain the moisture in the skin. Increased skin moisture results in a reduction of the appearance of wrinkles and therefore makes the skin appear smoother. Also, the use of targeted serums loaded with antioxidants such as vitamin C, E and beta-carotene contain skin-replenishing ingredients which also improve the appearance of skin.
Your recommended regimen
At SkinCeuticals we believe that an effective expert skincare regimen is based around five fundamental principles: cleansing, prevention, correction, hydration and protection.
This comprehensive cleansing ritual lifts impurities and prepares skin for optimal product efficacy.
Apply a small amount of Gentle Cleanser to a wet face and neck, and massage into skin with light circular motions. Rinse thoroughly with water. Use twice a day.
Using a cotton pad, apply a small amount of Equalizing Toner onto face, neck and chest. Use twice daily after cleansing.
2. Prevent - C E Ferulic
This innovative serum, containing concentrated vitamin C, strengthens the skin against environmental aggressors that can sap moisture from the skin, whilst helping to reduce the appearance of visible signs of photodamage such as fine lines and wrinkles.
In the morning after cleansing and toning, apply 4-5 drops to a dry face, neck, and chest.
3. Correct - Hydrating B5
Enriched with vitamin B5, this moisture-enhancing gel contains hyaluronic acid, the body’s natural hydrator, and helps to bind moisture to the skin.
Apply 2-3 drops to the entire face, neck and chest using the fingertips, avoiding the eye area.
4. Moisturise – Emollience
A rich and restorative moisturiser with a selection of natural extracts and oils, it nourishes and hydrates skin.
Apply an even layer to the entire face, neck and chest once or twice a day.
5. Protect – Ultra Facial Defense SPF 50
This high factor sunscreen helps to protect against photoageing and environmental damage.
Apply just before sun exposure, avoiding the eye area.