Hydrating vs. Moisturizing: Understanding the Difference

What do you need to know about moisturizing your skin? It's all about balance. Know what your skin needs and use the right moisturizer for it.

Moisturizing Your Skin: What to Know

Although moisturizing and hydration are used interchangeably, they are not the same thing. You have to understand whether the best moisturizer for you has a “moisturizing” effect or a “hydrating“ effect. Sounds so confusing, right?

Read on as we discuss the difference between hydrating and moisturizing to help you understand the needs of your skin to achieve the dewy, glamorous skin that you have always dreamt of.

What Does the Term Hydrating Mean?

The amount of water you drink plays a very important role to determine the hydration you are giving your skin. The more you hydrate your skin, the higher will be the water content of your skin cells. Hence, by opting for hydrating products, you are increasing the water level within your skin.

You have to ensure that your skin remains well hydrated to make it look beautiful and lamp. The lack of hydration on low levels of water will give your skin a shriveled up appearance making it look very dull.

To put this into context, imagine a water-filled balloon. When the balloon has more water, it looks firm, plump and shiny. But, when the water starts leaking from the balloon, the firmness, shine, and the plump must start reducing with every last drop. In the end, you are left with a shriveled up balloon.

But, you can still restore the previous state of the balloon by refilling it with more water. In the same way, you can restore the youthful glow to your skin by using hydrating ingredients or moisturizer formula.

Using a moisturizer formula that is rich in humectants can definitely do the trick. Humectants refer to substances that draw water molecules to the outer surface of the skin after absorbing moisture from the air as well as from the deeper layers of the skin. This, in turn, allows the skin cells to retain moisture giving it a plump appearance. Honey, hyaluronic acid, and aloe are a few examples of natural humectants.

What Does the Term Moisturizing Mean?

Usually, moisturizing your skin comes after you have hydrated it. If you are somebody who drinks water and applies hydrating product formulas but still faces dry and flaky skin, you need to further nourish your skin. In such cases, you need to opt for moisturizing elements for that extra nourishment.

Acting as a seal on the lipid barrier of the skin, moisturizers can help to prevent any further loss of water from your skin cells. It helps to properly regulate the moisture level in your skin making it look soft and supple.

Before you choose a moisturizer according to your skin type, you need to figure out the kind of moisturizer that you would want for your skin. If you have dry and dull skin, it will be better for you to opt for a thicker face ointment. Normal skin owners should opt for creams with a thinner consistency that helps moisturize and hydrate the skin. As for oily skin, lotions would be more suitable due to their water-based and lightweight formula. This rule can be applied for buying body moisturizers as well.

In addition to this, it will be better for you to opt for a more lightweight moisturizer to be used for the daytime and a thicker formula for the night.

Should You Go for A Hydrator is or A Moisturizer?

After reading the above points, you can see how both hydrators and moisturizers have more or less the same fundamental role to help us care for our skin. But, since they have different methods, we need to introduce a balance of both.

Still, if your skin is more on the drier-side, you would need to use a moisturizer to restore the plumpness and youthful glow of your skin. Here, you also have to understand whether your skin is dry or dehydrated. In the case of the latter, you need to opt for a hydrator instead.

You must be wondering as to how can you figure out the difference between dry and dehydrated. This can be achieved by observing the condition of your skin. If your skin has a flaky and dry appearance, this means that your lipid barrier is lacking in moisture. In such cases, you need to moisturize your skin to restore the protective layer of your skin.

On the other hand, if you have a dull complexion with signs of aging becoming prominent, there are higher chances for your skin to be dehydrated. To help you get that bounce and firmness back, you can start using a hydrator.

Resources— ShapeAnnMarie

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