Is Your Skin Dry or Dehydrated? What's the Difference?



This is actually a very common question. Dry skin and dehydrated skin are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. Here's what you need to know:

Dry Skin 

Dry skin is a skin type and is caused by a lack of oils. It occurs when your skin doesn't produce enough oil (sebum) to keep it moisturized. Dry skin is often genetic, meaning that you may have inherited it from your parents. It can also be exacerbated by environmental factors such as the cold, dry weather, or exposure to harsh chemicals in products.

Dehydrated Skin 

Dehydrated skin is a skin condition and is caused by a lack of water. It occurs when your skin doesn't have enough water. Dehydrated skin can affect any skin type, even oily skin. Dehydrated skin is often caused by external factors such as air conditioning, heating, or exposure to the sun. It is also caused by internal factors such as a poor diet or not drinking enough water.


How to Tell if You Have Dry Skin or Dehydrated Skin

Now that you know the difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin, you may be wondering how to tell which one you have. Here are some signs to look for:

Dry Skin

◻️  Your skin feels tight, rough, and itchy, especially after washing your face or taking a shower.
◻️  You have flaky or scaly patches of skin, especially around your nose, mouth, and eyebrows.
◻️  You may develop deep cracks in the skin that may bleed and can become painful.
◻️  Your skin is prone to redness, itching, irritation, and can be sensitive.


Dehydrated Skin

◻️  Your skin feels tight and looks dull, especially in the morning.
◻️  You have fine lines and wrinkles, especially around your eyes and mouth.
◻️  Your skin is prone to acne, breakouts, redness and inflammation even if it is normally clear.
◻️  You have dark under-eye circles.
◻️  Your eyes look sunken.
◻️  You pinch one of your cheeks and it wrinkles with gentle pressure instead of bouncing back.  
How to Treat Dry Skin and Dehydrated Skin

The good news is that both dry skin and dehydrated skin can be treated with the right skincare routine and a few lifestyle changes. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Dry Skin

◻️  Use a very gentle cleanser and wash with lukewarm water. Choose a cleanser that won't strip your skin of its natural oils.
◻️  Moisturize your skin daily with a rich, nourishing moisturizer and balm one that will reach the deep layers of the skin and lock in moisture.
◻️  Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air in your home.
◻️  Avoid hot showers and baths, which can further dry out your skin.


Dehydrated Skin

◻️  Use a rich serum and oil to boost your skin's moisture levels and reduce redness and inflammation.
◻️  Use a rich moisturizer, one that is designed to reach the skin's deep layers and to help your skin lock in moisture.
◻️  Avoid overexposure to the sun, air conditioning, or heating all of which can dehydrate your skin.
◻️  Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your skin hydrated from the inside out.


    While dry skin and dehydrated skin share some similarities, they are different conditions that require different approaches to treatment. Understanding the difference between the two can help you identify which skincare products and habits are best for your skin type and condition. 


    Remember, healthy skin starts with a healthy lifestyle and a healthy, consistent skincare routine!

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