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Skin is a complex matrix of living and dead cells, oils, and water that work together to protect the body from external stressors. When the levels of oil and water in the epidermis are balanced, that’s when skin is healthy, flexible and visibly radiant. Interestingly, oily skin can still be dehydrated and hydrated skin can still be dry! Confused yet? Don’t worry, we’ve broken down the variability and the vocabulary when it comes to levels of water and oil within the skin.

Hydration vs. Moisture

Often these terms are used interchangeably but they actually refer to different states within the skin. The term hydration refers to water content, while moisture pertains to oil. If your skin needs water it requires hydration and if it lacks oil it’s in need of moisture.

Hydration = Water

Moisture = Oil

Dehydration = Lack of water

Dryness = Lack of oil


Skin Solutions for Dryness

“Dry” is a skin type. It means that naturally your skin has less oil. If your skin lacks oil it will often appear flakey, red and/or irritated. Often those with dry skin types also have smaller pores and experience tightness after cleansing. To help compensate for the lack of moisture in the skin, apply oils similar in structure to that of natural sebum. Look for ingredients like grape seed oil, plant-derived squalane, jojoba and borage seed oil. Using face creams containing a blend of these ingredients is a great way to treat dryness while delivering other nourishing extracts.

Skin Solutions for Dehydration

Dehydration can happen to all skin types, even those with oily and combination skin. Water benefits the skin by going between cells and preventing them from peeling up, keeping skin flexible and adding volume to diminish fine lines. Often, dehydrated skin feels tight, looks dull, and/or can be oily (often skin produces oil to combat dehydration). Using hydrating products that contain water-binding humectants help keep water in the skin longer. Using ingredients like glycerin, cassia angustifolia seed polysaccharide and vitamin B5 helps to draw water from the atmosphere and from deep within the skin and hold onto it at the skin’s surface. For an extra boost, apply hydrating products to damp skin to give your humectants something to hold onto.

Better together

For optimal results, put your hydrators and moisturizers together. Apply a hydrating serum to damp skin (to give the humectants something to hold onto) followed by moisturizer and face oil overtop. Since oils can help hold water into the skin these products work synergistically to combat dryness and dehydration. Additionally, well-hydrated skin is less likely to over produce oil, thus, applying both hydrating and moisturizing ingredients to oily and combination skin can help balance uneven oil production. For more info on product layering check out our product layering guide HERE.

Full Regimen for Dry Skin:

  1. Makeup Removing Cleansing Oil
  2. Vitamin E + Oat Serum
  3. Ultra Moisturizing Face Cream 

Full Regimen for Dehydrated Skin:

  1. Natural Foaming Face Wash  or Makeup Removing Cleansing Oil
  2. HydrExtreme
  3. Mist or pat face with water
  4. Balancing Face Cream
  5. HydrExtreme Charcoal Sheet Mask 1-2 times per week 

Full Regimen for Dry & Dehydrated Skin:

  1. Natural Foaming Face Wash   or Makeup Removing Cleansing Oil
  2. HydrExtreme
  3. Mist or pat face with water
  4. Ultra Moisturizing Face Cream
  5. Vitamin E + Oat Serum
  6. HydrExtreme Charcoal Sheet Mask 1-2 times per week

3 +Care Solutions for Dehydration:

  1. Eat your water by incorporating water-rich juicy fruits and veggies like citrus, melon, cucumber, and tomatoes into your diet.
  2. Sleep with a humidifier beside your bed to decrease the amount of water that evaporates from your skin at night.
  3. Make your coffee order a half-caf to reduce your caffeine intake to more effectively absorb liquids from your diet, reducing your risk of dehydration in your body and skin.

3 +Care Solutions for Dryness:

  1. Shower in cooler water to prevent the heat from stripping your skin of its natural oils.
  2. Incorporate Omega-3 fatty acids into your diet by eating fatty fish like salmon and trout, or through a supplement like fish oil or vegan algal oil (look for at least 1.5 grams of combined EPA and DHA).
  3. Track your habits to note how changes in lifestyle can impact the oil production in your skin (the sebaceous glands in the face are responsive to hormonal changes brought on my stress, new foods and more).
Well balanced skin is naturally healthier, functional and beautifully radiant. Stay connecting with all things Skin+Care by becoming a Consonant Friends with Benefits Member.
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