Hydration is the first rule of healthy skin. Supple and soft skin is only possible if you keep drinking enough water which in turn flushes all the toxins from your body, leaving behind clear and translucent skin. Dry skin can often become itchy and flaky and can also lead to innumerable skin issues. In fact, if your skin or body gets severely dehydrated, you may need medical attention and urgent treatment.
Keeping your body hydrated will ensure that no such problems arise. So we are here to tell you how exactly to deal with dehydrated skin.
Don’t worry, a few lifestyle changes and a few tips and tricks later, your dehydrated skin will become a thing of the past.
- Dry skin vs. Dehydrated skin
- How to figure out if you have dehydrated skin?
- What are the ways of treating dehydrated skin?
- When do you need a doctor?
- What is the cosmetic course of action?
Dry skin vs. Dehydrated skin
First things first, know the difference between dehydrated skin and dry skin. Yes, both are different and we are here to tell you exactly how you can differentiate between the two and take measures accordingly.
The first and the most major difference is that dry skin arises due to a lack of natural oils of the skin, whereas dehydrated skin lacks water. Now, you may either have oily, combination or dry skin. The skincare or makeup products that you use depends on your skin type. Your skin type may either remain constant or change as per the season. Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, is a condition that may arise any time your fluid levels go drastically down.
The symptoms of the two differ as well. Dehydration is marked by symptoms such as itchiness, dullness, dark under-eye circles, shadows around the eyes and nose, along with dry skin. On the other hand, dry skin is marked by dry mouth, faint-headedness, overall weakness and darker urination.
The severity of the two differs as well. Dehydration, if severe and not looked out for, can be a medical emergency. The most that dry skin can cause is a trip to the dermatologist, but even then, there is nothing to worry about.
How to figure out if you have dehydrated skin?
Lack of hydration never really bothers in small doses. You may go on about your usual day and experience nothing. However, even if you feel the slightest of symptoms, it’s better you do a simple test at home to determine whether or not you are dehydrated. After all, falling down in the middle of your chores isn’t exactly the best way of figuring out that you need fluids.
Here’s how you do it:
- Take a small part of your cheek skin
- Squeeze lightly and let go
Does your skin naturally bounce back to its original state? Then you are not dehydrated. On the other hand, if your skin wrinkles, you are dehydrated.
The next steps can be figured out with the help of a dermatologist. They can also help you figure whether your skin is dehydrated or just dry and recommend a relevant course of action.
What are the ways of treating dehydrated skin?
Dry skin, in most cases, requires the intervention of a dermatologist. On the other hand, dehydrated skin, if it has not reached the medical emergency stage, can be fixed by way of certain lifestyle changes.
But first things first, drink a lot of water. Nothing beats that. Apart from that, here are a few lifestyle changes that can treat dehydrated skin while it is still in treatable.
- Moderate your alcohol consumption (if any)
- Start exercising regularly if you don’t (take an expert’s help if you are a beginner)
- Totally cut down on smoking Compensate for the loss of fluids after every workout
- Eat as many vegetables and fruits as you can
- Cut down on your caffeine consumption, coffee and tea can dehydrate you
- Avoid hot showers and take lukewarm ones
- Try using hydrators instead of moisturisers. They are specifically curated for dehydrated and dry skin, infusing the right amounts of hydration
Vegetables, whether raw or in the form of broths and soups, are a great source of replenishing lost hydration in the body. Apart from drinking lots of water, ensuring that you have the right kind of vegetables is also a way of tackling and reversing the effects of dehydrated skin.
However, if all of this still does not have the right effects on your skin, consult a doctor. You do not want dehydration to become worse for you to take action. In that case, you will be mostly treated with IV fluids till your body gets its usual levels of hydration back. Dry skin, which is a result of dehydration, on the other hand, can be treated by using the right products, along with eating the right diet.
When do you need a doctor?
We have discussed the symptoms of dehydrated skin. But how to know that it has reached its worst stage and you need medical attention? There are signs that warn you. Here are the signs to note:
- Less saliva formation
- Bad breath Severe constipation (lack of hydration and water leads to this)
- Mood swings and mental health issues such as anxiety and depression
- Frequent fainting spells
In case you notice any of the above-mentioned happenings, do not wait for your condition to get worse. Consult with your doctor immediately.
What is the cosmetic course of action?
While ingesting the right food and drinking plenty of fluids and water is the best way to take care of dehydrated skin, you have to use the right kind of products too. It will escalate the repair mechanism and ensure that your skin gets the boost of hydration from inside out. Here are the products that you should include in your routine, apart from the usual CTM products:
Include a face scrub or an exfoliator in your regimen. Accumulated dead cells have a negative effect on the way your skin absorbs moisture. To avoid that accumulation, exfoliate regularly. You can even go for facials such as a microdermabrasion or even hydra facials, for that extra bit of help.
This is perhaps the most ignored aspect of skincare, yet the most important one. We all indulge in moisturisers and sunscreens, but the fact remains that they affect, repair and protect only the external layer. Serums penetrate the deepest layers to treat better and have a long-lasting effect. Get a serum which is rich in hyaluronic acid. This is an acid that your skin produces naturally and constant replenishment of the same will help your skin preserve hydration.
This is yet another ignored skincare aspect. Most people think that going barefaced at night is the best they can do. Nope, not true. Using a night cream or a heavier night mask is the best that you can do. Night creams do not have SPF and are instead loaded with specific ingredients that target concerns and escalate the repair and rejuvenation process. Get one that is non-comedogenic and is oil-free.
Apart from this, here are a few more tips to keep in mind while choosing cosmetic products for your dehydrated skin.
- Skin aggravating ingredients such as alcohol, peppermint, menthol, etc., are a big no-no
- Check the ingredient combination and pick good ones with vitamin C, AHA and BHA exfoliants
- Try to pick and use mild and soap-free cleansers for daily use
- Use serums and moisturisers that are rich in antioxidants
- Do not use scrubs daily, as it may damage your skin and strip off its hydration
Dehydrated skin can be a bad thing, but not the end of the world. With the right care, diet and products, you can treat it quite effectively.