The Difference Between Dry And Dehydrated Skin

The Difference Between Dry And Dehydrated Skin

..Hang on. There’s a difference?!

Yes, you sweet goose. There’s a difference! Dry and dehydrated are two skincare terms that are often used interchangeably, but that’s where lots of people are going wrong. While they may sound similar, as it turns out, the needs of dry skin and dehydrated skin are very different.

This is how you can spot the difference between the two:

Dry Skin

What Is It:
Dry skin is a skin type (as opposed to dehydrated skin which is a skin condition, more on that in a bit) like oily, combination, or sensitive. It’s caused by hormones, genetics, or sometimes, ageing! Basically it just means that your skin doesn’t produce enough oil. The upside of this is that dry skinned rascals tend to not get (as many) breakouts, and won't struggle with shiny, sheeny, oily spots.

How To Look After It:
You can look after dry skin by incorporating oil-rich skincare into your routine, and avoiding anything too harsh or stripping. Your dry skin may struggle to produce oil, but no matter, you can help top it up with a few clever additions.

- A rich, replenishing face oil will make up for what your skin’s not naturally producing.

- A lush face cream will ensure moisture is firmly locked into your skin.

Dehydrated Skin

What Is It:
Like we said before, dehydrated skin is a skin condition. This means it's caused by external factors (think: heaters, air con, over exfoliation, chilly weather or wind; it’s also super popular when the seasons change) and is more likely to be temporary.

If your skin is dehydrated you will probably notice your skin feeling tight and flaky. On top of that, you may also notice some of your fine lines starting to look more prominent. And unlike dry skin, you’re not immune to shine or oiliness (it's a myth that oily/acne-prone skin types don't need hydration), which means you could also be dealing with congestion and breakouts at the same time. (Lucky!)

How To Look After It:
While dry skin wants oil, dehydrated skin wants water. Inside and out! So, up your water intake, and look to incorporate humectants in your routine. One clever way to do this is by adding a hydrating serum to your routine. You’ll want to look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin, and you’ll definitely want to apply it to damp skin, not dry to get the best results. (Bonus points if you’re also willing to cut back on air-con or heater use; wish we could relate.)

One More Thing

Since dehydration is a skin condition, every skin type can be dehydrated. Even oily! Even acne-prone! Which is to say that it’s actually very possible for skin to be both dry AND dehydrated.

What fun! If you fall into this camp, you'll require a combo of water and oil-based boosters to keep your skin all healthy, happy, and plump.