People seem to be misdiagnosing their skin types all day long. They think they have dry skin – but still get monthly breakouts… or, they think they have oily skin even though it is tight and flaky - just because it has a layer of oil on the top – when that actually means it’s severely dehydrated.
Let’s get to the bottom of what your skin type is, what Dehydrated means, and find out what is going to work best with your skin so you can stop fighting it and start working with it.
First of all we have the 4 main skin types. Dry, Normal, Oily and Combination. These are hereditary. You are born with skin that will either be overly oily, have balanced oil or no oil at all.
Oily skin types are prone to acne – since oil breeds bacteria. They have larger pores and are likely to be shiny or greasy.
The best products for oily skin are water-based and help to control acne and bacteria growth. Cleansers with hydroxy acids, such as our AB Cleanser are perfect to clear out the pores and gently exfoliate. Vitamin B Complex and Nano Hyaluronic Acid are perfect for daily use to balance the skin.
A tip with oily skin is to always apply your toners, serums and or creams to WET skin. Never let your skin dry out and then apply products. Keep it moist and lock in the water and then your skin won’t feel the need to pump out oils to hydrate itself.
Dry skin produces little to no oil, which causes the skin to be dry and flaky. Dry skin types have tiny, baby pores and never - ever get a breakout.
Cleansers that are gentle with hygroscopic ingredients like lactic acid are the best choice. Your skin requires some mild exfoliation without aggressively drying out the skin. Our Antiaging Lactic Cleanser is perfect.
The best leave-on products for dry skin are based with hyaluronic acid to help increase moisture in the skin, and then apply rich lipids to seal in the hydration.
DermaSnap 8LM with its squalane, intense moisture complex, hyaluronic and emu oil will give you everything you need in one product. If you don’t require an angiaging product, the emu oil or Essentials Healing Blend would be great stand-alone products.
Same as with the oily skin types, it is best practice to apply your products onto wet skin. The hyaluronic acid will grab onto the water and keep your skin hydrated all day.
Normal and combination are obviously a nicer balance of oils in the skin. Glycolic acid based cleansers such as our Revitalizing Cleanser are perfect for gentle exfoliation on a daily basis.
Then, it’s really up to you as to what you require. Many people apply a lighter moisturizer such as our Alphabet Cream or our GABA Elite to keep it balanced and others choose to apply serums such as our High Octane Vitamin C mixed with Nano Hyaluronic and then top that with an SPF. No matter what though always apply some hydration – even if that is only your sun block.
Now we have Dehydrated skin. The trick here is that all types can be dehydrated. It isn’t a “skin type” per se, but a condition that needs to be addressed. Rather than lacking oil – like dry skin – dehydrated skin is lacking in water.
Dehydrated skin looks flat, tight and lifeless and usually has a network of triangular fine lines allover its surface.
A simple test is to Pinch a small area on your check and squeeze lightly. If you notice any wrinkling – or the skin doesn’t bounce back immediately after you let go --- your skin may be dehydrated.
Lots of factors can cause skin dehydration such as: incorrect product choices that are too harsh for your needs, seasonal changes, excess caffeine, prolonged sun exposure, forced air heating, too much alcohol or not enough water or water based produce in your diet.
Another big factor of dehydrated skin is the trend of low-fat diets. They deprive your skin of its essential fatty acids, and without those protecting the cells from water loss, your skin will dry instead of being soft and hydrated. *Yet another reason to follow a Low Carb High Fat diet*.
Now, here is where it can get tricky. Some dry skin types become dehydrated – and that actually makes sense… dry and dehydrated …. but there are times when skin will become oily instead – and lead you to believe that you have an oily skin type when you don’t. *This is actually VERY common. This is because, when your skin is super dehydrated it will actually create MORE oil to make up for the missing water content. This can cause breakouts, irritation and a general confusion on whether your skin is oily or not. In this case your skin looks flat and papery with some fine lines everywhere, maybe a few pimples and a nice sheen of oil on top. Beautiful. LOL.
So let’s get to how we can FIX our dehydrated skin. And I say OUR, because most of us will definitely deal with dehydrated skin at many times in our lives. If you do chemical peels, you know exactly what dehydrated skin feels like! And… if you follow a few tips, and apply the right products, it will be just as short-lived.
Internally we can make sure that we are drinking enough water and eating enough water-rich veggies such as cucumbers, lettuce, avocado and broccoli as well as fruits such as watermelon.
Don’t get too carried away with excess water drinking though, because if you go overboard, you can deplete your minerals. Drink when you are thirsty and of course extra if you work out.
Watch being overly aggressive with the scrubs and acids – as too much can lead to a damaged moisture barrier. Use products like Epidermal Growth Factor to help balance acid and retinoid usage.
Products like our Regenerate EGF will help to accelerate skin barrier repair as well as improves trans epidermal water loss. Applying this 2x per day will help to keep the water IN your skin where it needs to be.
Again, a key ingredient with water-loss is hyaluronic acid. This will help to retain water and plump some life into those deflated cells. Since hyaluronic can hold 1000’s its own weight in water – you can see why this is so beneficial. You can also take a daily supplement of HA of which I HIGHLY suggest for all skin types as it lubricates your skin as well as your joints.
Since your skin is dehydrated – and not “dry” – you don’t need to add oils to your skin. A nice water based moisturizer such as our GABA Elite or even just a sunblock will be all that is needed. *And just like I mentioned prior, apply your products to wet skin to really lock in the water your skin needs.
I hope that I have helped you figure out what your skin type Is and if you are dealing with dehydrated skin or not. If you still have more questions – just reach out to us – we are here to help!