Are you forgetting this important step in your skin care routine?Aug 14, 2023
Yes, it's really hot outside, and my plants are clearly telling me they're thirsty. But let me ask you this: are you giving your skin the hydration it needs? We usually focus on moisturizing only when it's cold or dry, but our skin actually craves moisture all year long. Our skin is alive – it's the largest organ in our body – so it's super important to keep it hydrated and healthy. We're more than a pretty face, ya know!
Our skin has a protective barrier that consists of several layers. The outermost layer is called the stratum corneum, followed by the epidermis, and then the dermis. This skin barrier isn't fixed though; it's a living system made up of skin cells called keratinocytes, which are held together by lipids, cholesterol, and ceramides.
When this skin barrier becomes dehydrated or damaged, it can lead to issues like redness, itchiness, and flakiness. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure your skin stays moisturized and healthy:
1) Opt for a mild cleanser that doesn't strip your skin of its natural oils. Harsh cleansers can disrupt your skin's balance, leaving it dry and vulnerable.
2) Don't underestimate the power of sunscreen. Even if your sunscreen isn't labeled as a moisturizer, it can still provide hydration. For people with oilier skin, this may be all you need!
3) If your skin feels tight or shows signs of cracking, be sure to apply a moisturizer within a few minutes of washing when the skin is slightly damp. This helps lock in moisture.
4) If you're prone to acne, skip oil-based moisturizers. Choose non-comedogenic options with dimethicone for a smooth, non-greasy texture. During acne treatment, your usually oily skin might get dry, so don't skip this step!
5) Applying a thick layer of petrolatum (like Vaseline or Aquaphor) can be especially beneficial for rough or thicker skin. Focus on areas like heels, hands, legs, and elbows, applying it overnight. For extra hydration, consider wearing cotton gloves or wrapping the skin with saran wrap to enhance absorption.
6) Remember, excessive exfoliation can harm your skin barrier, leaving it damaged or irritated. So, don't overly exfoliate your skin!
Moisturizing isn't just about looking good; it's about keeping your skin strong and happy. Remember the basics: pick the right moisturizer, use it gently and consistently, and don't forget to treat your skin to some nighttime love. With these simple steps, you're on your way to having skin that's healthy, hydrated, and absolutely radiant!
Find out why moisturizers matter in this week’s podcast episode featuring Dr. Suarez!
A new podcast episode drops every Monday!