As someone who has tried only a gazillion beauty products, I can safely declare that the moisturiser is one of the more important ones, if not the most important. We face unforgiving weather elements every day, and coupled with our very hectic lifestyle and dietary choices, our skin loses more moisture than we realise.
When our skin gets dehydrated, it isn’t at its optimal condition to repair itself properly. This can lead to dry and flaky skin that is red and itches, overproduction of sebum that means clogged pores and acne, and the “scariest” of all, premature ageing. Hence, the very crucial need to have at least one moisturiser on our vanity.
Here are seven things you need to know about moisturisers:
1. How do moisturisers work?
Moisturisers usually contain a combination of this power trio: humectants, emollients and occlusives. Humectants supply moisture to our skin’s topmost layer (known as the epidermis) by attracting moisture from our surroundings and pulling some up from beneath (known as the dermis.). Emollients softens our skin by penetrating into it. Occlusives help retain moisture by forming a protective barrier.
2. Yes, oily skin still needs a moisturiser!
Contrary to how we feel, oily skin actually still needs a moisturiser. Very often, oily skin is a result of our skin producing more oil to compensate for the lack of moisture. When we take the initiative to replenish this loss with a moisturiser, the oil-producing glands stop working overtime and our face starts looking less like a disco ball at the end of the day.
3. Pick a moisturiser for your skin type
Unfortunately for us, there isn’t a one-formula-fits-all moisturiser. A creamy one will probably backfire on oily skin, but will be a complete dream for a dry one. Here are some tips:
- Normal skin: Ah, you lucky ones! You can pretty much use most moisturizers, but do go along with how your skin feels. If you are burning the midnight oil and your skin starts feeling oily during this period, go with a lightweight lotion. And if your skin is drying out because of the Arctic cold in your office, pick a heavier one.
- Oily skin: Opt for lightweight, water-based lotions that are non-comedogenic and contain lactic glycolic acids or salicylic acids. These will help speed up skin cell renewal while keeping your skin adequately hydrated.
- Dry skin: Parched skin will find relief in creamier formulae. Look out for ones that contain shea butter, lanolin, and ceramides. These ingredients provide moisture and ensure that it stays put.
4. How to make the best out of your moisturiser.
Maximize your moisturiser by applying it when your skin is still damp. This locks in the water that is already present in your skin. If your skin is already dry, swipe on some toner! Also, apply your moisturiser starting from your cheeks and then, going upwards and outwards in gentle circular motions. Don’t forget to pat in what’s left over onto your neck and décolletage because that’s where the first signs of ageing happens!
5. Use moisturiser with SPF for the day
SPF is another item that we cannot do without when the sun’s getting harsher. But it’s a tad troublesome to wait for your moisturiser to completely sink in first. Well, fret not, because nowadays more moisturisers come equipped with SPF. These will definitely shave a few minutes off your morning routine.
6. Multi-tasking moisturisers help to save time!
Modern-day moisturisers have also become more multi-tasking (Very much like us!). There are moisturisers that double up as a primer, come tinted to provide light coverage, or even target skin woes like dullness and acne. You are completely spoilt for choice but do make sure to do a patch test on the inside of your wrist first to see if the product is suitable for you!
7. Try an oil!
If you aren’t a fan of chemicals and prefer more natural options, why not give oils a go? Though they seem a little daunting, oils can actually benefit our skin. They prevent skin dehydration by strengthening our skin’s lipid barrier and retaining moisture. Tried, tested and approved oils include coconut oil, avocado oil, sweet almond oil and seabuckthorn seed oil. Here‘s a face massage you can do with your oils!