How Often Should You Moisturize?
A skincare routine is an essential part of maintaining your skin's health and youthful glow. Moisturizing is just one of many steps of a well-rounded skincare regimen, but its importance is often downplayed or even forgotten. Since it's usually the final step, some people view it as optional. However, moisturizing does many important things for the skin and is arguably one of the most critical steps of any skincare routine.
This article goes further into detail about the benefits of moisturizing, how often you should moisturize, the four different moisturizer types, and how to choose the one that's right for you.
The Importance of Moisturizing
Sometimes we get busy and forget to take the time to care for our skin. However, our skin is our biggest organ, so it's vital you set aside a part of your routine to nurture it. While there are multiple steps to the optimal skincare routine, moisturizing may be the most necessary in maintaining your skin's health. There are numerous benefits to moisturizing every day, such as:
- Prevents and heals dryness: Cold weather and other elements can dry out the skin, and some people have a naturally dry skin type. Using a moisturizer traps moisture in the skin and prevents further loss. Moisturizing also helps heal any damage caused by dryness by replacing what was already lost.
- Reduces fine lines and wrinkles: Attempting to stop the signs of aging has been a skincare concern for ages. Keeping your skin hydrated is one of the best ways to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, which keeps the skin looking young and healthy. This isn't just true for the face, either. Moisturizing your body will keep your skin taut and youthful.
- Fights acne: While adding more moisture to the skin may seem counterintuitive to fighting acne, there is evidence to suggest that moisturizing can reduce the symptoms of acne. When your skin is dry, your body will automatically try to produce more oil from the sebaceous glands to fix the problem. This can clog the pores and cause more breakouts. By moisturizing often, you control the hydration your skin receives and stop the body from producing too much oil.
- Soothes skin: If you have sensitive skin or any skin conditions, such as eczema, you're probably familiar with how the skin can flare up and feel dry, itchy, or inflamed. Moisturizing can calm sensitive skin and reduce these symptoms. Picking the right moisturizer is critical in soothing inflamed skin, which we'll cover in more detail later.
- Provides a barrier: Moisturizing creates a barrier between the skin and the outside world. You protect your skin from harsh winds, pollen, and other elements. If you choose a moisturizer with sunscreen, you'll also protect your skin from UV rays, which are known to damage the skin and lead to early signs of aging.
Taking care of your skin is a significant part of the self-care process and keeps you in good health for longer. Whether you're trying to reduce acne flare-ups or soften the skin and eliminate dryness, moisturizing is the key to achieving these goals.
How Often You Should Be Moisturizing Your Face and Body
Now that we've established how important moisturizing is to your skin's health, how often should you do it? Should you moisturize every day? How often should you moisturize your face in comparison to your body? You might be one of many people who think that you should only moisturize your skin when you have dry skin, but dermatologists recommend having a routine so your skin gets a dose of regular moisture. This is especially true if you live in a dry environment where it's difficult for your body to retain its natural oils.
The general rule of thumb is to moisturize your face twice a day with a chosen product at the end of your skincare routine. This will lock in any moisture and provide a barrier between the sensitive skin on your face and external irritants.
When you moisturize, your body will require a slightly different routine from when you moisturize your face. You'll still want to set a routine and hydrate your body at least once a day, but there are other times when you should moisturize your body. Mainly you'll want to use a moisturizer after hot baths or showers because hot water pulls the body's natural oils from the skin, leaving it feeling dry and cracked. You'll prevent any damage to your skin by moisturizing immediately after.
After you shave or exfoliate your skin, you should take some time to hydrate your skin. Both of these processes involve removing dead skin cells from the surface of your epidermis, but they can also strip your skin of its natural oils. Moisturizing your skin replaces these and locks moisture in place. You'll also want to moisturize after swimming in a pool. Chlorine dries out the skin, so you'll want to replace your skin's moisture after you've had your fun.
How often you moisturize your skin will also depend on your skin type. You may want to moisturize more frequently to reduce flaking, redness, and irritation with dry skin. If you have an oily skin type, you'll want to choose a thinner moisturizer suited to your skin type, and you may not use it as frequently as someone with normal or dry skin.
How to Apply a Facial and Body Moisturizer
The best way to implement a moisturizer into your daily routine is to make it a part of your skincare regimen. In general, most skincare routines start with a cleanser to wash the face and body of any dirt, grime, or excess oils that have built up. Next, you'll use a toner for the face and an exfoliator for the body to replenish the skin with nutrients and clean the pores deeply. Finally, you'll finish with a moisturizer.
Applying a moisturizer is simple. For your face, you'll take your facial moisturizer in your clean hands and gently rub it into your face using circular motions. Don't forget to include the neck! Using a body moisturizer is just as simple.
You'll start with a small amount, though you may need more if your skin is particularly dry or rough. If you're sensitive to the cold, you can rub the product between your hands to warm it up. Finally, massage the moisturizer into your skin using circular motions. These movements help the product penetrate the skin and provide the hydrating boost your skin needs.
4 Different Types of Moisturizers
There's this idea that moisturizers are a one size fits all product, but the reality is that there are several types of moisturizers on the market, each serving a unique purpose. The moisturizer that's right for you will be different from someone else's because your skin types and needs will vary. What works for dry skin won't work for oily skin and vice versa. Below are the four different types of moisturizers, how they work, and what skin type is best suited to their use.
This type of moisturizer works to draw water back into the skin and bind it in place with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid or aloe vera. These ingredients also smooth out the skin, creating a thin barrier between your skin and the elements.
Humectant moisturizers are suitable for all skin types, particularly oily skin, because of how lightweight they are. These moisturizers work well in humid environments for the same reason. If you live in a dry climate, dermatologists recommend mixing products with hyaluronic acid with an occlusive ingredient to trap the moisture inside your skin.
This moisturizer uses oils and fatty acids, otherwise known as lipids, to fill in the gaps in your skin for ultimate hydration. The creamy consistency smooths the skin, and the active ingredients help repair damage and cracked skin. Emollients are suitable moisturizers for normal or combination skin types but work best with dry skin. You can use certain products to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, while others you can use to treat conditions such as eczema.
The ingredients in emollients are also excellent for sensitive skin, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, and other skin inflammations. Emollients are best used in cold, dry environments where the skin is more likely to lose moisture and crack.
There are some similarities between emollient and occlusive moisturizers in that they both can smooth the skin. The difference lies in occlusive moisturizers' ability to protect skin from harsh elements like wind, pollen, and other potential irritants. This barrier also prevents moisture from escaping, so your skin remains hydrated. Occlusive moisturizers are often made with thick ingredients like beeswax or petroleum jelly, making them better suited for the body than the face.
This heavy moisturizer has the potential to clog the pores in your face, especially if you have an oily skin type. Dry skin types benefit the most from occlusive moisturizers due to their ability to retain moisture and prevent further damage to the skin.
Ceramides are found naturally in the skin and help trap moisture. When you lack the proper amount of ceramides, your skin may appear dry, cracked, or damaged in some way. You can use a ceramide moisturizer to replace these missing ceramides and replenish your skin so it looks healthy and radiant again.
People with dry skin and conditions like eczema and psoriasis benefit the most from ceramide moisturizers since these products provide a protective barrier and retain moisture. However, if you have a more severe case of dry skin or a skin condition, an occlusive moisturizer may be the better option for you.
How to Find the Best Daily Moisturizer Based on Your Skin Type
The moisturizer you need will be different based on your skin type. While everyone's skin is unique and requires specific treatment, there are five major skin type categories that everyone falls under:
- Normal: If you have a normal skin type, your skin is well-balanced. You're not too dry or too oily, and overall, your skin is healthy.
- Dry: If your skin appears flaky, cracked, or rough, you likely have dry skin. Often, the skin dries out due to environmental factors, such as dry climates or harsh winds. For some people, dry skin is a symptom of conditions such as eczema.
- Oily: When your sebaceous glands produce too much oil, your skin becomes excessively hydrated, often resulting in breakouts and acne. Oily skin is common among teenagers as their hormones fluctuate.
- Combination: This skin type shows signs of being both dry and oily. Usually, the T-zone in the face will be oily while the rest of the skin may be dry, but this is not always the case.
- Sensitive: You have a sensitive skin type if your skin reacts more severely to stimuli than normal skin. For example, you may be prone to infections or irritations caused by external irritants. Sensitive skin types require more attentive care than other types since they can become damaged more easily.
Knowing your skin type is the first step towards finding the right moisturizer. For example, oily skin types should use humectant moisturizers due to their lightweight ingredients. These won't clog the pores and make the skin more oily than it already is. If your skin is dry, you might gravitate towards occlusives or ceramides due to their thick nature and ability to replenish lost moisture.
The best way to determine what moisturizer you should buy is to visit a dermatologist before purchasing. They can tell you what your skin needs and what ingredients to look for during your product search.
Additionally, dermatologist-recommended moisturizers are your best bet since skincare professionals consider and approve the ingredients. Shop from trusted brands and retailers to ensure you're getting the genuine product instead of an imitation, which might lack crucial ingredients from the original. Look for a morning moisturizer that includes an SPF of 15 or higher to protect your skin from UV rays.
A suitable moisturizer hydrates the skin, locks in moisture, and protects you from external irritants. If you don't moisturize or your current moisturizer isn't doing what it should, it may be time to switch.
Hydrating your skin is vital for maintaining your skin's health and youthful radiance. With so many products on the market, it can be challenging to decide which is the right fit for you. That's why at Exclusive Beauty Club, our experts can help you narrow down your options from our wide selection of moisturizers so you can pick something that is best suited to your individual needs.
We consider what products you already use, your skin type, and age to curate the best choices so you can rest assured that your skincare products are performing as promised. All our products are medical-grade or dermatologist recommended to give you even greater peace of mind. Get started on your skincare journey and contact us today!