When you look at the skincare products, we commonly see two words that are used interchangeably: ‘hydrating’ and ‘moisturizing.’ They may look like they mean the same thing, but actually, they are not. Both these words may seem similar, yet they mean two different skin concerns. Let’s break down the differences between ‘hydrating’ and ‘moisturizing’ ingredients so that we can get a clearer picture.
Essentially, dehydrated skin is a skin condition that lacks water, which is why someone with a dehydrated skin needs hydrating ingredients in their skincare products. When we talk of hydration, it refers to water. So, when you see hydrate on skincare products, it means to add water or to allow your skin to retain the water.
Anyone can experience a dehydrated skin, whether you have a dry or oily skin type. Your skin can get dehydrated due to various factors like stress, unhealthy diet, and poor lifestyle. If you notice your skin getting too tight and flaky, or even start to look dull, it may mean you have a dehydrated skin and so, you need to look for some hydrating products.
Sometimes, you can have both oily and dry areas on your skin that never feels hydrated enough, despite using some hydrating products. When the skin is losing water or becoming dehydrated, it tends to secrete more oil to cover up for the loss of hydration. This cycle eventually leads to more breakouts.
One of the best hydrating ingredients to combat dehydrated skin is hyaluronic acid. This effective humectant can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water and locks in moisture for a plump, and hydrated look.
On the contrary, dry skin is a skin type, not a skin condition that lacks oil. So, someone with dry skin requires skincare products with moisturizing ingredients to soften the skin. If you feel that you have a dry skin type, it means your skin is unable to yield a sufficient amount of oil to keep your skin soft and smooth.
This skin type is also subject to TEWL or what we call the transepidermal water loss, which refers to the amount of water lost or evaporated from the skin. So, when the skin loses both oil and water needed for nourishment, you are left with dry, dull, and flaky skin.
The best way to nourish dry skin types is to look for moisturizing ingredients like ceramides, jojoba oil, avocado oil, glycerin that not only moisturizers your dry skin but also work to strengthen the skin barrier.
Both hydrating and moisturizing ingredients work in different ways as they deal with either a dry skin or a skin condition. Before you pick any skincare product, first try to know your skin concern, whether your skin is dehydrated or dry. If you see the problem, you know what to look for now.