Many of us suffer from dehydrated or dry skin. There is a difference in the way it occurs and the way it is treated.
Dehydrated skin has a lack of water, whereas dry skin has a lack of oil known as sebum. Dry skin is actually a skin type and dehydrated skin is a condition. Any skin type can be dehydrated.
Dehydrated skin can also be oily; it can over-produce oil to compensate for the lack of moisture. Dehydrated skin loses moisture through transdermal evaporation.
Dry skin can cause itchiness, flakiness or a tight feeling, it’s quite hard to distinguish between dehydrated and dry skin as the two often present some of the same problems. Serious dry skin can cause things like eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis.
Can lifestyle changes help?
Because dehydrated skin lacks water you can improve it if you make lifestyle changes. Dehydrated skin can be caused by diet, hormones, weather, alcohol, caffeine and smoking. Smoking depletes your skin of water and essential nutrients plus vitamin C which helps to form collagen. It’s one of the fastest ways to cause ageing of the skin. Smoking can often add at least 10 years to your face, causing lines and wrinkles.
We are told time and time again to drink plenty of water. Eight glasses a day are recommended to prevent dehydration. Also, drinking too much water will flush away important nutrients from your body. If you can cut down on alcohol, caffeine and eat foods which have got a high water content like melon, you are not only getting the water content but some important nutrients too. Melons have got Vitamin A,C and magnesium. Strawberries are another high-water-content fruit which contains Vitamin C and fibre. These have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body which may prevent certain cancers and help with heart health too.
Air conditioning and cold or hot climates can suck moisture out of your skin, leaving it feeling parched and at times itchy. Certain medications can also cause dehydration and dry skin.
Make sure you use a good natural skin care routine to help put moisture back into your skin.
Linda Thompson – Founder of the original silk pillowcase is also a skin care specialist.