Here's The Actual Difference Between Dehydrated And Dry Skin

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Dry and dehydrated skin are easier to differentiate than you may think. They affect your skin differently and need contrasting products to alleviate their effects. Before you can figure out which type of dryness you're suffering from, you need to know what your skin type is. There are four different types: normal, oily, dry, and combination skin. 


It's important to know what type of skin you have so you can care for it properly with products that have ingredients to help you. Skin Medical explains that some topical products have ingredients that are too harsh for certain skin types. If you don't know what to use, you could accidentally apply products that do more harm than good. Then you may end up with a skin condition that you have to treat. To determine if you have dry or dehydrated skin, you need to assess how your complexion looks and feels.

Dry skin

Dry skin is a type of skin that people are born with. It's not exclusive to your face, meaning that even your hands, legs, and scalp can feel dry. This type of skin means you are missing oil in your epidermis, explains American Spa. It will feel dry all year round, but especially in the winter. You may also suffer from conditions like eczema. 


Luckily, there are symptoms to look for in your skin to know if it is dry. One sign is if your lotion quickly disappears into your skin after applying it. The easiest thing to notice is if your skin feels tight. It can also have visible fine lines and look flaky, according to Re'equil. Your pores are another thing to look for. You likely have dry skin if you can barely see them. To relieve your dry skin, try using products with lipids in them. These are ingredients like shea butter and ceramides. 

Dehydrated skin

Dehydrated skin is different from having a dry skin type because it means your epidermis is missing water. Since this is a condition, you can cure it by removing the root of the problem. Then your complexion will return to your true skin type.


It may be tricky to find the problem because your lifestyle and environment affect your skin. Some things to consider changing are your makeup, skincare products, or diet, according to Dermalogica. Even the weather affects how hydrated your skin is. Keep in mind that you can suffer from both dry skin and dehydrated skin simultaneously.

Your skin tries to repair a dehydrated complexion by creating more oil, making you more susceptible to developing breakouts. It can look oily and have irritated, dry patches at the same time. These factors are similar to combination skin. The trick is knowing if your skin has changed recently or always felt like this.

Unfortunately, drinking more water alone won't cure dehydrated skin. To truly help this condition, apply topical products that are rich in water.