When our skin feels tight and dehydrated, many would head straight for a rich moisturiser to help hydrate the skin, but is this the answer to combat dehydration?
A moisturiser can help improve the barrier of the skin which in turn prevents water loss, but it is unlikely that it will hydrate the deeper layers of the skin due to the large size of the molecules.
By applying a hydrating serum it has the ability to penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin. A hydrating serum should contain Hyaluronic Acid. Do not be alarmed by the name as this powerful ingredient is essential for our skin health, as it improves and maintains vital levels of hydration in the skin cells. Hyaluronic Acid has the capacity to attract and hold up to 1000x its weight in moisture.
We produce our own Hyaluronic Acid
As a naturally-occurring polysaccharide found in the human body, hyaluronic acid acts as a cushioning and lubrication agent for our joints, nerves, hair, skin and eyes. It's particularly important to skin appearance because about 50 percent of the body's supply of the acid is located in the skin tissues, where the viscous, jelly-like substance helps keep it plump, soft and supple... for a while, at least.
So, you may be asking yourself why do we need to add it topically to our skin if we produce it naturally?
Why use a Hydrating Serum?
Our ability to produce hyaluronic acid declines with age due to the enzyme hyaluronidase which can lead to increased dryness, fine lines, wrinkles and sagging. In fact, by the time we reach 50, we lose approximately 50% of hyaluronic acid. Also, when the skin is hydrated and the barrier is strong, our skin generally becomes more resilient to environmental change and has less chance of becoming reactive and sensitive.
One of the best ways to topically deliver hydration into the skin is to use a water-based serum that contains hyaluronic acid. Think of it as giving your skin a big glass of water.
It can be applied before or after other water-based serums such as antioxidants, retinol, pigment inhibitors etc, and underneath oil-based serums or your moisturiser. The idea of a Hyaluronic based serum is to constantly attract moisture to the skin without increasing the oil content.
How to test if your skin is Dehydrated.
Before we go on and talk about skin types let’s do a simple skin test to see how dehydrated your skin is. This will determine which hydrating serum is right for you.
Look in the mirror. Place your fingertips just below your cheekbones and press your fingers slightly into the skin and push up approx. 1 cm. If you see fine lines, this is an indication that your skin is dehydrated. If the skin looks really crepey then your skin is experiencing an extreme amount of water loss.
Which Hydrating Serum is right for you?
Oily and problematic skin: As oily and problematic skin can get dehydrated, a simple hydrating serum will prevent inflammation in the skin and keep the skin plump and healthy, especially if you are using products that contain salicylic or other exfoliating acids or having regular professional peels.
The perfect hydrating serum would be one of the following:
Teen skin would also benefit from this type of serum especially in the winter months.
Ages 30-40: In this age group, it is important to focus on always keeping your skin hydrated at an optimum level. Just remember a well-hydrated skin means fewer wrinkles in the long run. Adding a Hyaluronic acid product is highly recommended.
Age 40+: As mentioned above, our ability to produce our own Hyaluronic acid depletes as we age. We should, therefore, focus on using products that help reproduce our own Hyaluronic acid as well as topically infusing it. Think of it as a dual action effect. Therefore we recommend the following products:
Hyaluronic acid is about maintaining good hydration (water) levels in the skin. This helps to prevent inflammation and premature ageing as well as giving the skin a youthful appearance. So, when your skin looks a bit like a prune, implement a hydrating serum so you look more like a peach.
Time Out Beauty is a specialist cosmeceutical and botanical skincare online store. We stock a wide range of products with free delivery available. We have a Reward Money loyalty program for return buyers. Our brands include Medik8, Synergie Minerals, Waterlily, Societe, Skin Medica, LashesMD, Aspect, Teen Aspect, Colorescience and Cosmedix.