Dry skin and dehydrated skin may seem synonymous, but they’re actually two different things. Dry skin is a skin type characterised by a lack of oil or lipids. Dehydrated skin, which is really more of a skin condition, is caused by a lack of water.
Today, we're looking into the best ways to deal with dry skin and dehydrated skin. Should you moisturise? Should you tone? Which natural skincare products work? And what kind of makeup should you use? We've got the answers.
But first, let’s get to the core of the problem.
What's the difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin?
Dry skin and dehydrated skin may have different underlying causes, but most of the signs are similar. Dry skin and dehydrated skin are prone to dullness, flaking, and visible fine lines. Both are characterised by a matte appearance and fine pores.
Dry skin often feels itchy and looks red, splotchy, and leathery. Dehydrated skin feels tight and is usually accompanied by dry, cracked lips. Note that dehydration can happen with any skin type, which means you can have oily and acne prone skin and also be dehydrated.
There are a bunch of factors that can result in dry skin, including genetics, ageing, your diet, the weather, overusing certain skincare products, contact with allergens, and overscrubbing. As for dehydrated skin, this temporary condition is usually brought about by insufficient water intake or excessive sweating.
If you suspect that your skin is either dry or dehydrated, try to figure out which external factors or lifestyle choices may be causing your skin problems. You can also improve the condition of dry or dehydrated skin by incorporating natural skincare products into your everyday skincare routine. For dry skin, choose products with rich oils and lipids. For dehydrated skin, look for moisture-binding ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin.
How to cleanse dry and dehydrated skin
For everyday cleansing, use the Weleda Almond Soothing Cleansing Lotion. This is a great choice for dry skin: it's extra mild and extra gentle, is water based, and has powerful moisturising ingredients. You only need a moistened cotton wool pad to remove this, which is perfect if you find that regular washing only makes your skin drier.
For moisturising ingredients to get through the rough upper layers of dry skin, you’re gonna need to do some exfoliating. A good facial cleanser will gently break down the dead skin cells and other impurities that adhere to your skin and cause dry patches. This allows the hydrating ingredients of your moisturiser to really sink into your skin and do their job.
For dry skin, you have to use an extra gentle exfoliating cleanser. Go with non grainy formulas such as this one from Acure. Instead of physical exfoliators, it uses active fruit enzymes to gently remove dead skin cells and reduce fine lines.
Acure also has a non abrasive Brightening Vegetable Peel, which uses sugar cane extract and apple cider vinegar to gently exfoliate. Use either of these 1-2 times a week.
Get dehydrated skin back on track with a mild cleanser that deep cleans as it hydrates. The Weleda Gentle Cleansing Milk lifts off impurities without sucking moisture out of your skin. It’s water based and packed with jojoba and sesame seed oils.
Andalou Naturals has a lovely Cleansing Foam that's extra mild and soap free. It has vegetable glycerin, a powerful ingredient that pulls in water molecules from your surroundings and binds them to your skin, leaving it as smooth and plump as a baby’s bottom.
What toner should you use?
Both dry and dehydrated skin will benefit from a hydrating toner that locks in moisture after you wash your face. Use one with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid. Like glycerin, hyaluronic acid is a powerful humectant that attracts water and deposits it into your skin.
Andalou Naturals has an amazing Floral Toner that has hyaluronic acid and another natural humectant: aloe vera. Use it morning and night after your gentle cleanser and tuck it in your purse before you head out. It’s great as a facial mist and because the smell is heavenly, it’s the perfect mood booster as well.
How to moisturise dry and dehydrated skin
Look for ingredients such as lactic acid, which will rehydrate your face and reduce the appearance of fine lines. The Weleda Almond Soothing Face Cream is extra mild and formulated for very dry skin. This beautifully rich facial moisturiser's packed with lactic acid and nourishing sweet almond and plum kernel oils. It’s water based and light enough to wear under makeup.
If you’re using the Andalou Naturals 1000 Roses cleanser and toner, follow them up with the Day Cream from the same line. This satin soft cream contains a wealth of powerful ingredients (Alpine rose stem cells, rosehip and pomegranate oils, hyaluronic acid) that will completely transform your skin's texture.
Apply your moisturiser immediately after cleansing and toning, before your skin begins to feel tight. Follow it up with a good sunscreen.
Eyes and lips
People with dry skin are prone to fine lines, especially around the eyes and mouth. A good eye cream, such as the one from Acure, will stimulate collagen production and reduce wrinkles and crow’s feet.
Chapped lips is one of the most obvious signs of internal dehydration. Use a petrochemical free lip balm such as the Melrose Little Bird Organic Paw Paw Balm or the Miessence Jaffa Lip Balm to keep your lips kissably smooth.
Makeup for dry and dehydrated skin
The makeup you use should be an extension of your skincare. For both dry and dehydrated skin, choose mineral makeup that corrects flaws as it nourishes your skin.
People with dry or dehydrated skin tend to have visible fine lines and rough, flaky patches. A good primer will smoothen everything out and create an even canvas for your foundation.
While it’s best known for its ability to soften hands, knees, and elbows, celebrity favourite Weleda Skin Food actually also works as a primer. And because it has a rich but non greasy formulation, it’s perfect for those with dry or dehydrated skin. Just warm a drop or two between your fingers and apply all over your face. You can even mix it with your favourite foundation to make a hydrating tinted moisturiser.
Using waterproof concealer on dry skin is a no-no. If you need extra coverage, go with a moisturising concealer such as this one from Miessence, which hides imperfections without looking cakey or dry. Another good option is the Lavera Natural Concealer. With ingredients such as organic shea butter, coconut oil, and jojoba oil, it conceals spots and dark circles without settling into every wrinkle and fine line.
With dry skin, you don't want to use anything that’s mattifying or formulated to control oil. Instead, keep dry skin at bay with a moisture packed foundation like the Lavera Tinted Moisturising Cream 3 in 1, which has shea butter and argan oil, or the Benecos Natural Creamy Makeup, which has organic plant extracts for extra hydration.
Cream blushes are your best option. The Ere Perez Carrot Colour Pots, for example, have a creamy formula that delivers a nice flush of colour and a good dose of hydrating olive and avocado oils.
Mineral powders let you build up colour but won’t settle in your pores. Try the Lavera Mineral Rouge Powder, which has a nice silky texture, or the Benecos Natural Compact Blush, which has a noncaking formula and is packed with moisturising plant oils.
If your lips are dry or dehydrated, look for lipsticks with ingredients that nourish and protect. The W3LL PEOPLE Nudist Colourbalm, a lip balm and lipstick in one, is enriched with omega oils. Neek’s Vegan Lipstick has a base of shea butter, jojoba oil, and avocado oil — perfect for parched lips.
Powder tends to sit on wrinkles and rough patches, so those with dry or dehydrated skin should steer clear. But if you really must use a little powder to set your makeup, go for light mineral powders and avoid anything oil absorbing or mattifying.
Lavera’s Fine Loose Mineral Powder is a good choice if you're looking for a transparent setting powder. This one softens imperfections and fine lines. It's also finely milled and gentle enough to use on sensitive and acne prone skin.
If you need something that offers more coverage, go for the tinted one from Benecos. Like the Lavera powder, this is infused with organic plant extracts. It’s lightweight, leaves a demi matte finish, and comes in four shades.
Even if you’ve prepped your face well and used the right makeup for your skin type, certain environmental conditions can still leave your skin dry and tight. Keep a bottle of facial mist on your desk so you can top up your moisture levels when the air conditioning at the office is wreaking havoc on your skin. Try the Mt. Retour Organic Rose Hydrosol. You can use this before makeup (as a primer) or after (as a hydrating refresher).
Hello Charlie stocks a wide array of products for dry and dehydrated skin. Shop them here.
Do you have dry or dehydrated skin? How do you deal with it and what natural skincare products do you use? We’d love to hear your tips and recommendations.Main image credit: Deposit photos Image credits: Weleda, Andalou Naturals, and Benecos.
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