Skin hydration

Skin hydration

How to keep your skin well-hydrated

One of the most important things you can do for your skin is to keep it well hydrated.  This will rejuvenate your skin so it looks and feels smooth and soft.

Does drinking water hydrate my skin?

Drinking enough water is important to your overall health and to your skin; however, it's not clear whether drinking extra water affects skin hydration in healthy people. Your skin is also affected by your diet, lifestyle, environment and skin care routine.

How much water should I drink?

One commonly used method to calculate how much water you should drink is to divide your weight in pounds by 2.  That gives you the number of ounces of water you should drink every day.  For example, if you weigh 140 pounds, you should drink 70 ounces of water per day (8-10 glasses)

What is the difference between dehydrated and dry skin?

Dry skin has fewer oil-producing glands whereas dehydrated skin lacks water, not oil. Dehydrated skin might not be dull, flaky or rough, but could show a loss of resiliency, e.g., if you pinch the skin, it won't quickly return to its original position. Of course, your skin can be both dehydrated and dry. The lack of oil in dry skin affects the skin barrier; this can lead to loss of water resulting in skin that is also dehydrated.

What is the difference between skin hydration and moisture?

Hydration and moisture are 2 distinct needs of the skin. Hydrating ingredients in skin care products attract water to the epidermis (outer layer of the skin), while moisturizing ingredients lubricate the skin to prevent water from escaping. Note that many products marketed as moisturizers have both moisturizing and hydrating properties.

To maintain well-hydrated skin:

  •  Avoid prolonged contact with hot water.  You might try limiting showers to 5 or 10 minutes in warm rather than hot water.
  •  Use a gentle cleanser. 
  •  Moisturize immediately after taking a bath or shower or washing your hands.
  • Use a humidifier when the air is dry.
  • Wear gloves when going out in cold weather.
  • Avoid excessive caffeine and alcohol consumption; they are dehydrating.
  •  Eat foods that are rich in water and antioxidants.
  •  Eat more healthy fats, omega-3 in particular.  Fatty fish (e.g. salmon, sardines), nuts, seeds and olive oil are good sources of omega-3.
  • Do not smoke.  Smoking can accelerate the aging process.

Sources

  1.     Gibson LD. Does drinking water cause hydrated skin? https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/expert-answers/hydrated-skin/faq-20058067 Accessed September 26, 2022.
  2.     Metrus L, Allen M. According to Derms. https://www.byrdie.com/drinking-water-stay-hydrated#toc-does-drinking-water-actually-hydrate-your-skin Accessed September 26, 2022.
  3. Brady K. 16 ways to hydrate your skin from the inside out, according to dermatologists. https://www.prevention.com/beauty/skin-care/a36292880/how-to-hydrate-skin/ July 6, 2021, accessed November 21, 2022.
  4. What is the difference between skin hydration and moisture? https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/hydration-vs-moisture#summary Accessed November 21, 2022.

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