Get rid of your dry skin blues with our short guide on how to identify the best facial moisturizer for dry skin, including skin of colour.
Plant baby, it’s time to switch up your dry skin care routine by adding that extra boost of hydration. We’ll tell you why moisturizing is important for dry skin (normal skin plant babies also need to moisturize, read on to find out why!) as we take you through the benefits of moisturizing and important ingredients to look out for in your moisturizer.
Dry skin may not be in your control as it may be caused by the climate you are living in, exposure to certain air particles, or even unbalanced skin pH levels. Not only does the texture of your skin become rough but there are other implications of dry skin such as soreness, itchiness, and its red appearance. However, what is in your control is to get rid of this flaky rough skin by kicking in a moisturizing ritual into your schedule.
Why do we need moisturizers?
Moisturizers are crucial for dry skin because they lock moisture into the skin by forming a protective layer that prevents the loss of essential oils. Dry skin occurs when the skin is not able to produce lipid skin cells that help retain moisture. Hence, moisturizers preserve moisture in the skin’s protective layer by reducing the evaporation of water and essential nutrients in order to lock as much moisture as possible to keep the skin soft.
How do moisturizers do what they do for dry skin? They are composed of oil-based ingredients such as occlusives, emollients, plant oils, and others (we’ll dive deep into these ingredients soon!). Hence, these oils trap the water on the surface of the skin to prevent the skin from drying and flaking. So, when we have enough water and oil in our skin, we are able to give it moisture and thus prevent dry skin. The best facial moisturizer for dry skin would ensure one or two more of these ingredients are present to nourish your skin.
Whether you have dry skin or not, moisturizers are skin care essentials for everyone. Though there are diverse formulations for moisturizers suitable for specific skin types, all moisturizers have one thing in common. They combat our skin issues to keep the skin’s pores healthy. Moisturizers enable our skin to be refreshed and replenished with essential nutrients, hydration, and moisture that it may lose through the climate, our lifestyle, or our body’s way of functioning. So, find that moisturizer that suits your skin type and embrace it into your skin care routine.
Benefits of moisturizing for dry skin
You may wonder, why is moisturizing necessary for those with dry skin? Well, there are other complementary benefits of moisturizing, in addition to hydration.
Some dermatologists believe that moisturizing the skin daily can enhance it to appear refreshed and youthful over time. This comes as the moisturizer locks water in the skin which not only smoothens the dry skin but also reduces skin lines that are caused by a lack of moisture and oil, which is exactly what a moisturizer provides to rejuvenate the skin. Skin reboost, check! Wrinkle-free skin, check! Skin rejuvenation, check!
Key ingredients to look out for in a good moisturizer for dry skin
Emollients are fatty substances, scientifically known as lipids, that transform flaky dry skin into smooth soft skin. They soften the skin by reducing the gaps between skin cells to avoid moisture from being easily lost. Think of this ingredient as a lubricating glue that binds the cracks between your skin cells to prevent moisture and nutrients from seeping through.
How does it heal dry skin? Well, emollients provide a soothing relief for dry skin as they heal skin irritation and eczema. It is recommended that emollients should be used regularly, perhaps 2 to 4 times a day, to heal dry skin. Quantity wise, a generous layer of emollients can provide maximum smoothness. The best way to apply an emollient is to gently massage it into the skin.
Some examples of emollients are plant oils such as canola oil, soybean oil, jojoba oil, and rosehip oil. In fact, rosehip oil is one of the recommended plant oils to use for melanin-rich skin. Other examples of emollients include shea butter and dimethicone.
P.S. our UpCircle Organic Face Serum with Coffee Oil contains both jojoba oil and rosehip oil. Best applied after moisturizing, this face serum locks essential nutrients and moisture in your skin.
Jojoba Oil: Compared to other heavier emollients, this lightweight emollient naturally moisturizes the skin’s surface without leaving any sticky residues on your hands. Jojoba oil along with other plant oils are safe and beneficial for melanin-infused skin tones due to their skin-restoring properties.
Shea Butter: A luxurious and moisturizing emollient that calms dry skin. When fully absorbed into skin cells, it helps maintain moisture for the skin to be healthy and smooth. What’s more, shea butter is one of the best active ingredients for melanin-rich skin.
Humectants are moisturizing agents beneficial for dry skin. They draw water and moisture from the air and deeper skin layers into each skin cell. This helps the skin gain maximum moisturization from its surroundings.
It is recommended that humectants should be used with other moisturizing agents like occlusives and emollients to achieve effective results. This is because when humectants take water and moisture from surrounding areas of the skin, it could result in those parts of the skin getting drier. Thus, a combination of humectants and occlusives, for example, can complement each other as occlusives help lock the moisture that humectants draw. Pro tip: if you have two separate moisturizers, then remember to apply your humectant-containing moisturizer before your occlusive moisturizer.
Common examples of humectants include vitamin B-5, hyaluronic acid, urea, sorbitol, propylene glycol, and aloe vera. Most of these ingredients are colourless and naturally-occuring in plants, vegetables, and fruits. Mother Nature, thank you for your magic!
Hyaluronic Acid: Hydrates and softens the skin by drawing water into skin cells in the most natural way. Recommended for dry skin, it draws moisture into dry pores to prevent the skin from flaking and peeling. While keeping the skin moist and smooth, hyaluronic acid can even out dark spots caused by hyperpigmentation.
Aloe Vera: A humectant that calms the redness and irritation caused from dry skin. Its cooling and medicinal properties relieve dry skin while it is packed with nutrients, water, and vitamins.
What are occlusives? Think of this ingredient as your super oily shield that prevents any moisture from escaping or water from evaporating. It does this by creating a robust barrier on the topmost layer of the skin. If you have a waxy or velvety rich moisturizer then it most likely contains occlusives.
Examples of occlusives in skin care include vitamin E, petrolatum, and mineral oil.
Vitamin E: This ingredient is empowered by plants as it can be naturally derived from nut oils or sunflower seeds. It is an occlusive that reverses the drying effects of unstable molecules in the skin to boost moisture.
Mineral Oil: Increases the skin’s water content with its occlusive properties to heal dry skin. It can be found in leave-on and rinse-off products. Mineral oil is suitable for melanin-infused skin tones as it is a transparent and fragrant-free ingredient. These qualities can reduce the susceptibility of melanin-rich skin to potential irritation or inflammation.
Buying the best facial moisturizer for dry skin
We recommend a thick oil-based moisturizer for our plant babies with dry skin. This is because a thicker formulation of emollients and moisturizing oils enables maximum moisture to be locked into the skin layer to form a smooth protective shield. For our plant babies living in dry or humid climates, it is especially important to gain the necessary moisture and nutrients for the skin to remain healthy and smooth. So make sure you use that moisturizer daily and massage it into your skin!
Here’s a quick guide on applying moisturizers the right way before we reveal our best facial moisturizer for dry skin.
- Squeeze a pea-sized quantity of the moisturizer into your palm
- Rub both the palms of your hand to ensure the moisturizer is evenly spread
- Apply the moisturizer. Pro tip: the best time to apply a moisturizer is after a shower or face wash. This is because damp skin better absorbs the moisturizer
- Moisturize in circular motions while gently massaging your skin
Now that you know more about what moisturizers and their key ingredients do for dry skin, let’s find out what our best facial moisturizer for dry skin does.
This fast-absorbing best facial moisturizer for dry skin nourishes and brightens the face. Powered by natural essential oils and organically-grown ingredients such as vitamin E (an occlusive), cocoa butter (an emollient), and aloe vera (a humectant), this moisturizer is a winner in the Beauty Shortlist Awards 2021.
To achieve effective results from this natural moisturizer, apply a small amount of it onto clean, dry patches on face. Massage until absorbed. This moisturizer is suitable for daily use so feel free to Rub, Clean, Ahh, Repeat!
Read our upcoming article on tips to buy the best moisturizer for acne-prone skin.
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