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Dehydrated Skin: Causes, Symptoms, and Solutions

Dehydrated Skin: Causes, Symptoms, and Solutions

Dehydrated skin is a common skincare concern that occurs when the skin lacks sufficient water in the outermost layer, leading to a temporary state of imbalance.  

Dry skin and dehydrated skin are two distinct conditions that can often be confused due to some overlapping symptoms. Dry skin is a skin type characterized by a lack of oil (sebum) production, leading to a compromised skin barrier and inability to retain moisture effectively.

In a nutshell, dehydrated skin - lacks water. Dry skin - lacks oil.

Causes of Dehydrated Skin:

Dehydrated skin can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  1. Environmental Factors: Exposure to harsh weather conditions, such as cold temperatures, wind, and low humidity, can strip moisture from the skin and contribute to dehydration. Cold air has a lower humidity level, which means it holds less moisture. As a result, the moisture in our skin evaporates more quickly when exposed to cold air, leading to dryness and dehydration. Low humidity levels, commonly associated with indoor heating during the winter months, can significantly impact skin hydration. Dry air lacks moisture, which means it draws moisture away from the skin, leading to increased trans epidermal water loss (TEWL) and dehydration.
  2. Over exfoliation:  While exfoliation can be beneficial for promoting cell turnover and improving skin texture, overdoing it is bad for the skin. Excessive exfoliation can disrupt the skin's natural barrier function, leading to moisture loss and dehydration. The skin's outermost layer, known as the stratum corneum, acts as a protective barrier against environmental stressors, pollutants, and moisture loss. When the skin's natural barrier is compromised, moisture from the deeper layers of the skin can evaporate more easily, leading to dehydration. Additionally, without an intact lipid barrier, the skin struggles to retain moisture, leading to further skin woes.
  3. Inadequate Hydration: Water is essential for maintaining various bodily functions as well as for maintaining optimal skin hydration and function. The skin is the body's largest organ and requires adequate hydration to remain healthy and hydrated. When the body is dehydrated, water is diverted away from the skin to more vital organs, leading to decreased skin moisture levels and compromised skin barrier function. Adequate hydration from within can help support skin hydration, elasticity, overall appearance and maintain skin health. Not drinking enough water or consuming dehydrating beverages like alcohol and caffeine contributes to dehydration from within.
  4. Skincare Products: When skincare products containing alcohol, synthetic fragrances, or other drying ingredients like sulfates are used regularly, they can disrupt the skin's natural balance and lead to various symptoms of dehydration. These may include increased dryness, tightness, flakiness, redness, and sensitivity. In severe cases, prolonged use of drying skincare products may compromise the skin's barrier function, making it more susceptible to environmental damage, inflammation, and premature aging.

Symptoms of Dehydrated Skin:

    • Tightness or Discomfort: Skin feels tight post-cleansing or when exposed to environmental stressors.
    • Dullness: Skin lacks radiance and vitality due to moisture deficiency.
    • Fine Lines and Wrinkles: Dehydration accentuates fine lines, especially around the eyes and mouth.
    • Sensitivity: Dehydrated skin becomes more sensitive and prone to irritation, especially with harsh products.


Recommendations for Dehydrated Skin: 

    • Apply Humectants: Glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and aloe vera attract and bind water to the skin, restoring hydration.
    • Use Hydrating Serums: Serums with hyaluronic acid or humectants provide an extra moisture boost. If you’re not a fan of hyaluronic acid serums, try serums with natural extracts that help attract and retain moisture. Examples, tamarind extract, hibiscus extract, mushroom extracts, seaweed extracts, aloe vera extract, and honey. These ingredients can provide similar hydrating benefits.
    • Moisturizers: Moisturizers play a vital role in skincare by helping to hydrate and protect the skin, especially by preventing moisture loss. Emollient moisturizers, particularly those containing ceramides and butters and oils, are particularly effective in this regard.
    • Avoid Harsh Ingredients:  Be mindful of the ingredients in your skincare product. Certain ingredients can worsen your situation. If you use products with alcohol for example, ensure that your skincare routine is balanced, with adequate hydration, moisture and the appropriate product layering technique.
    • Hydrate Internally: Drink adequate amount of water daily to support skin hydration from within. Increasing water intake during hot weather, physical activity, or when consuming dehydrating beverages can help maintain hydration levels.

Product Recommendation for Dehydrated Skin: Kambiio Radiance & Vitality Set.

Stellar Brilliance Concentrate x Excel Radiance Oil Serum

This dynamic duo is meticulously crafted with premium ingredients and backed by science to deliver visible results you can see and feel.

Shop here

Key Benefits:

  • Intensely hydrates and replenishes the skin (aloe vera, glycerin, plant hydrosols, hibiscus extract)
  • Brightens and revitalizes skin complexion (licorice extract, turmeric extract, rose hydrosol, papaya, carrot seed oils)
  • Minimizes the appearance of dark spots and discoloration (licorice, papaya)
  • Refines skin texture and enhances radiance (rooibos and hibiscus extracts, marula oil, camellia seed oil)
  • Provides antioxidant protection against environmental stressors (green tea and rooibos extracts)
  • Improves skin elasticity and firmness (marula seed oil, rice bran seed oil, hibiscus extract)
  • Moisturizes, nourishes and softens the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles (lipid rich seed oils in Excel, hibiscus extract, sunflower seed oil)
  • Provides long-lasting hydration and protection (combo of Stellar x Excel)
  • Enhances skin's natural luminosity and radiance (combo of Stellar x Excel)
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