Decoding the Mystery Between Dry and Dehydrated Skin

Decoding the Mystery Between Dry and Dehydrated Skin


Hey there fellow skincare enthusiast! As this summer is winding quickly to an end, I thought it would be a good time to journey into the fascinating realm of skin moisturization and hydration! You might have heard the terms “dry” and “dehydrated” being used to describe skin, often interchangeably, but they are actually two different and distinct skin issues that originate from different sources.  Your skin can be dry or dehydrated (or both, which is definitely not good), and understanding the distinction is crucial for combatting the issues surrounding both and achieving that enviable glow of our youth. So, let’s start with a general definition of what dry and dehydrated skin IS.

What is Dry Skin?: Dry skin is a skin type that is often a genetic predisposition where your skin doesn’t produce enough natural oils (sebum) to keep it sufficiently moisturized. Envision dry skin similar to a desert which is dry all over, lacking moisture because that is its environment, or in skin’s case, it’s genetic composition. If you have a parent that has dry skin, you have a considerable higher chance of dry skin yourself. Also, your skin may become increasing dry as you age resulting from changes in your hormone levels. Thanks menopause.  Dry skin often feels rough, flaky, and can get irritated easily. If you notice your skin has been this way for a long time, you most likely have dry skin.

Dehydrated Skin: Similar to dry skin, dehydrated skin lacks moisture, but not because of genetics, but rather because it is starved for it. Instead of a desert, it’s your beautiful floral garden without rain or any watering. It’s a skin condition rather than a skin type, and dehydrated skin can happen to any skin type, including oily skin. Where oily skin has too much sebum or an overproduction of natural oils, and dry skin is caused most often by genetics, dehydrated skin can result due to environmental aggressors (think of winds, winter, summer heat, hard water, etc.), lifestyle choices, such as excessive caffeine or alcohol intake, and/or even wrong skincare products.


Distinguishing between dry and dehydrated skin isn’t just about skincare; it’s about understanding your skin’s unique needs, or what I like to say, it’s love language. Here’s what to look out for:

• Dry Skin: Often feels rough, flaky, or even scaly due to the lack of natural oils.
• Dehydrated Skin: Might appear dull and lackluster, with fine lines becoming more noticeable.
• Dry Skin: Can look ashy or grayish, especially in cooler temperatures.
• Dehydrated Skin: Tends to look tired, with more prominent dark circles.
• Dry Skin: Feels tight and uncomfortable, especially after cleansing.
• Dehydrated Skin: Often feels thirsty and can be a bit itchy.
Signs of Aging:
• Dry Skin: Prone to premature aging due to the lack of natural hydration.
• Dehydrated Skin: Fine lines and wrinkles will likely look deeper and more pronounced.

*Picture is from LA Skincare


Now that you’ve learned the difference between dry and dehydrated skin and have a better understanding of what your skin is, you can begin speaking its love language!

Love Language for Dry Skin – Moisture!

Here is how to best show some moisture love to dry skin.
• Opt for rich, creamy moisturizers that contain ingredients like shea butter, hyaluronic acid, and/or ceramides.
• Avoid harsh cleansers that strip your skin of its natural oils.
• Incorporate a gentle exfoliation routine to remove dead skin cells, such as Elina Organic’s Sapphire Mask.

Love Language for Dehydrated Skin – Hydration!

Here is how to best show some hydration love for dehydrated skin!
• Hydration, hydration, hydration! Load up on water-rich foods and invest in hydrating skincare products, such as Elina Organic’s Sahara Souffle.
• Choose lightweight moisturizers, such as Elina Organic’s Mermaid Elixir, to lock in hydration without clogging pores.
• Use a gentle cleanser and avoid hot water, as it can further strip your skin.

There you have it, a comprehensive guide to demystifying the world of dry and dehydrated skin. Remember, knowing your skin type and condition is the first step toward a radiant complexion. Whether you’re battling dryness or dealing with dehydration, a consistent skincare routine tailored to your skin’s needs will undoubtedly lead you to the path of glowing, healthy skin. So, go ahead, embrace your skin, and let its natural beauty shine through!


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