Skin hydration & moisture

Hello and welcome to the Winter skincare series. It’s a double whammy today; it’s the first blog of 2021 and the first blog on the newly rebranded The Shan R.N.. Click this link for all the details on what sparked the change in the About Me section on the home page; after reading this of course! 

 It’s that time of the year where the level of hydration and moisture in and on the skin can be rather elusive. Hydration and moisture is important all year round but these dry, cold months make it an uphill battle. Have no fear, I am hopeful this piece will arm you with some solid tips for the winter months ahead. DISCLAIMER: Hydrated and moisturized skin is for everyone, irrelevant of your skin type. Let’s discuss;

Hydrated and moisturized skin is for everyone, irrelevant of your skin type.

  • The Benefits of Hydrated Skin
  • Hydrated vs Moisturized Skin
  • Achieving Hydrated Skin

The Benefits of Hydrated Skin

Hand in clear water showing hydration
Photo by Andre Moura on Pexels.com

Hydrated skin has; 

  • Great elasticity
  • Reduced appearance of wrinkles
  • Balanced oil production
  • Improved skin defences 
  • Improved detox function

Our skin has 3 layers, hydration works on the second layer of our skin; the dermis. Hydration is infusing the cells with water effectively plumping up the skin. Hydration  is the key to keeping our skin looking youthful and radiant. This is achieved by applying concentrated serums like Hyaluronic acid to the skin after washing and before applying moisturizer. The order in which to apply skincare products for optimal absorption is discussed in another blog piece here.

Hydration is infusing the cells with water effectively plumping up the skin.

Hydrated vs Moisturized Skin

Moisturized and hydrated skin is the ultimate goal of the skincare industry and as such, they’ve lumped the two concepts together. In my quest for hydrated and moisturized skin, I’ve learned there is a difference between the two. 

As mentioned above, hydration is getting water into the skin cells; moisturization is literally “trapping” the water in those cells. Moisturization is focused on the top layer of the skin also know as the epidermis. Moisturizing the skin;

  • Locks in hydration
  • Supports your skin’s defences against the elements
  • Minimizes the occurrence of skin problems
  • Diminish blemishes 
  • Wrinkle prevention

So which one should you strive for? Hydration OR moisture? The simple answer is BOTH! I don’t see how you can separate the two. Hydrated skin will dry out if it is not effectively moisturized to seal in the hydration and moisturized skin needs to be hydrated. 

Hydrated skin will dry out if it is not effectively moisturized to seal in the hydration and moisturized skin needs to be hydrated. 

Achieving Hydrated Skin

Achieving hydrated skin is not as simple as slapping on some products and calling it a day. Products are a big part of skin hydration, but don’t neglect drinking water, getting some physical activity in and eating a balanced diet. Hydrated skin is achieved on a whole with a fairly balanced lifestyle.  The key ingredients in heavy rotation to keep my skin hydrated and moisturized are;

Black lady with natural hair standing behind an aloe Vera plant
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com
  • Hyaluronic Acid (HA)
  • Honey
  • Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s)

Hyaluronic Acid (HA)

One of the best serums for hydrating the skin is hyaluronic acid. It’s true, HA would do a much better job if injected into the dermis of the skin but this will have to do for now. HA is a naturally occurring clear gooey substance in our bodies that holds more than 1000x its weight in water. It does the job of skin hydration like ah boss! Applying HA to clean preferably damp skin is recommended. 

HA is a naturally occurring clear gooey substance in our bodies that holds more than 1000x its weight in water.

Do keep in mind that HA is a humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the surrounding environment. In winter and other dry seasons, there is very little moisture floating around in the air. For some, HA may cause dehydration. Combat this dehydration by completing your skincare routine quickly after washing your face and applying that moisturizer at the end. The AM and PM application of HA is not to be missed in my routine.

Honey 

The skincare product Farmacy Honeymoon glow AHA Night serum on a marble counter.
HONEYMOON GLOW AHA Resurfacing Night
Serum with Hydrating Honey + Gentle Flower Acids

The many beautiful properties of honey are amazing and endless; it’s antibacterial so it’s healing, it’s antimicrobial so it can get rid of bacteria.  Incorporating honey into your skincare routine will amp up the moisture quotient for sure because like Hyaluronic Acid, it is a humectant. Be mindful of the quality and type of honey to reap its skin care benefits; raw honey seems to be the best for the skin. Honey is also incorporated very well in numerous skincare products, like The Farmacy’s Honeymoon Glow AHA Resurfacing Night Serum with Hydrating Honey + Gentle Flower Acids. It’s a mouthful to say and it works!

Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA)

Alpha Hydroxy Acids are a whole vibe by themselves. I delve in on face acids in another blog piece entitled Face Acids; AHA, BHA & PHA here. Last year was very eye opening for me in terms of incorporating face acids into my skin regimen. Now that they have been incorporated, there is no turning back. The benefits of using face acids are almost immediate. These gems aid in keeping your skin hydrated by encouraging skin cell turnover and enhancing the absorption of serums and other skincare products. They give the best glow and create a beautiful smooth canvas by balancing out the texture of your skin. Do not be put off by the word ‘acid’. AHA’s are made from fermented fruits and milk in the case of lactic acid. Sunscreen is recommended all year round but especially when using AHA’s as they accelerate the rate of skin turn over. New fresh skin will burn at a faster rate if left unprotected.

AHA’s aid in keeping your skin hydrated by encouraging skin cell turnover and enhancing the absorption of serums and other skincare products.

Conclusion

That’s all she wrote for now folks. I hope I was able to provide some useful tips and information on keeping your skin looking and feeling amazing this winter. Head over to Healthline.com for more information on skin hydration and moisture.  Leave your comments and questions on this blog piece in the comment section below. Keeping in the same vein of winter or dry weather skincare, a product review is up next! These products have saved my skin!!

Don’t forget to subscribe to The Shan R.N. if you haven’t already and head over to the About Me page for an update on the blog name and direction change!

Peace & Love!  

Posted by

Hello and welcome to The Shan R.N. I’m a Registered Nurse and married mom of 2 currently working on COVID-19 case management in Ontario, Canada. This blog has evolved into a skincare blog and I'm here for that. I am obsessed with all things skincare! Click the About Me link to learn more.

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