Saturday, March 7, 2009

Hydration Issues

Today's question is from Nagi -

After I get a facial, my skin is hydrated and my wrinkles are not too noticeable, but a few days later they come back. My aesthetician said there are 2 levels of hydration and I am only treating the top layer--I need to also treat the lower layer. (There is a bit of a language barrier too, so when she explains it I think I am only getting half of the info....). I think she means that the skin can still feel soft to the touch but be dry under it. 
Can you explain this for me?
thank you!!

Your Aesthetician is absolutely right, there are two layers of hydration.  The top layer is the epidermis which is treated with the standard moisturizers and gets a nice deep treatment when you get a facial.  The lower layer is not treated during a facial because skin care products are not meant to penetrate that deeply. 

In order to hydrate the lower level you need to take a very simple and low tech approach to skin care.  Drink water.  The average person running around now suffers from chronic dehydration.  In fact many people actually mistake their body's signal that they are thirsty for the signal that they are hungry.  Due to this mistake people are not getting the water they need.  The human body is more than 75% water and water is the fluid that helps the body transport nutrients and flush away toxins.  Therefore, if you are not getting enough water your body will start taking water from areas where it is less vital, such as the skin.

To rectify this situation I suggest following a very simple formula.  Take your weight and divide it by 2.  That is the number of ounces of water you should drink a day.  If you take that number and divide it by 8 that is the number of 8oz glasses of water you should drink in a day.  For every caffeinated or alcoholic beverage you consume you should drink an extra glass of water because caffeine and alcohol can both cause dehydration.

Try drinking water according to the above formula for three weeks.  Then, look in a mirror, and with your fingers  in the center of your cheek, gently push up on your cheek towards your eye.  Ignore the lines that form around the eye and check for very fine lines on the cheek itself.  If you see any, your skin is still dehydrated and you need to increase your water intake further.  

If you do see these lines, don't despair.  If you are drinking water according the the formula I gave you and are consistently using your moisturizer your problem may be caused by some other factor.  High levels of physical activity, some medications, and environment may all be partially to blame for your dehydration.  All you need to do is increase your water intake until you are no longer seeing those lines form.  Yes, you may be running to the bathroom every hour but proper hydration now will improve your skins appearance when you are older, so isn't that worth it?


Patrice @ The Soap Seduction said...

I'm a healthy-sized gal, and when I did the calculations, I'm going to be drinking a river! I'm going to give it a shot though. I so need to drink more water. Thanks Heather!

Dlsarmywife said...

Great tip about hydration. And such a simple remedy as well. Gotta finish my coffee and then start drinking my water. :-)