Moisturizers are the cornerstone of any good skincare routine, but there are so many products out there. How do you know if you’re using the best moisturizer for your skin and its many unique features?
Moisturizers have been around in some form or another since humanity has existed. Ancient Egyptians and Greeks used natural resources like milk and olive oil, using whatever they had to give their skin what it needed. We’ve come a long way from bathing in dairy, but the natural urge to help our skin stay smooth and safe from dryness has not faded. While there are a variety of different moisturizers out there, they all work in a similar way. There are two main goals of a moisturizer:: provide moisture and keep that moisture locked into the skin. Many moisturizers offer further benefits, but that’s part of why finding the best moisturizer is tricky.
Everyone is different, so it stands to reason that no one’s skin is made alike. Some skin is well-balanced, and doesn’t require much intervention, though a light moisturizer can only make things better. Other skin types may suffer from extreme dryness or oiliness, or a combination of the two. Regardless of how your skin works, there is a moisturizer out there that can make things better.
There are other factors in determining your skin’s level of moisture. Seasons and other environmental factors can make things better or worse for your skin. Winter is responsible for a great deal of drying in skin. Summer can also dry out your skin, but it’s just as likely to contribute to sweating. Excessive sweating can cause oils to build up on your skin. It’s possible that you may need to change things up as the seasons change, and depending on where you live that might be a necessity. New England summers are humid, so dryness may be less of a concern, for instance. But skin that’s unprotected from sunlight, even in humidity, will be at a high risk of drying up under the oppressive summer sun.
Odds are, you’re going to know pretty quickly whether a moisturizer is right for your skin. If you have sensitive skin, you may have encountered rashes from certain moisturizers before. A rash is an allergic reaction to an irritant on the skin. While many moisturizers are made with sensitive skin in mind, there is always a risk in trying a new product, or developing an allergy to something you’ve used before. With sensitive skin, you’re going to want to opt for hypoallergenic, fragrance-free moisturizers. These products will be labeled as such in the store, and if you need more help, you can always ask your dermatologist for help finding the right one for your unique skin. The maxim of finding a good moisturizer for sensitive skin is: the fewer ingredients the better. Fragrances often require more ingredients, and are the cause of many allergic reactions.
If sensitive skin isn’t your issue, but you’re experiencing a great deal of dryness, you’ll want to look for heavier moisturizers. Moisturizers go by many names, and they usually describe what they’re best for. In the case of dry skin, an ointment is your best bet for restoring your skin’s moisture. There are many different dry skin moisturizer ingredients that work to optimize your skin’s moisture, so look for things like: hyaluronic acid, glycerine or propylene glycol.
Your skin may also be excessively oily, or prone to acne. If either of these issues is the case, you’ll probably want to select a lighter moisturizer that’s also non-comedogenic. Non-comedogenic facial moisturizers and other products are designed to not clog pores. Some people’s skin is less reactive to comedogenic products, but if you already have acne-prone skin, avoid anything not explicitly labeled this way. A good ingredient in acne/oil friendly moisturizer is alpha-hydroxy acids, which don’t cause oil to develop in excess. This ingredient is also found in a lot of anti-aging moisturizers.
Anti-aging moisturizers are products that offer hydration for your skin and seek to slow the development of wrinkles and fine lines. Any moisturizer will help with this, but ingredients like the aforementioned alpha-hydroxy acid and hyaluronic acid along with collagen or vitamin A, can all help keep signs of aging at bay. Many facial moisturizers will also contain sunscreen, which prevents a score of health issues, including wrinkles and premature aging. It’s a great idea to use products that contain sunscreen, but keep in mind that you’ll still need to use sunscreen when out in the sun for more than a few minutes. This is a daily sunscreen designed for protection from slight sun exposure, not a day out.
There are other considerations that you may need to make when exploring moisturizers, and even if your current product works, there may be something out there that works better. If you have further questions about a good moisturizer for your unique skin, call the people who care at Northeast Dermatology Associates.
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