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Moisturizing is an integral part of many women’s daily routine. The morning and evening ritual has become almost as automatic as brushing our teeth! We’ve been told time and time again that we should be moisturizing morning and eve in order to combat the signs of wrinkles and dry skin. The skin care bible even tells us so; cleanse, tone, moisturize. A routine followed by many of us worldwide, but what if this expensive ritual is actually worsening our skin?
Moisturizing in particular is noted by many as the most important component of a woman’s beauty routine - Our faith so strong that 8 out of 10 American women use it daily!
According to La Roche-Posay (Skincare Company), 70% of women claim that they have dry and sensitive skin, which begs the question why? Dr Rachael Eckel cosmetic dermatologist, explains that “Moisturizers are a widespread, silent traitor and an important contributor to skin disease”. Moisturizing daily will lead to “the accumulation of dead surface skin cells, dryness, large pores, acne and sensitivity”. She also claims that it is only roughly 15% of the population who actually need to use a moisturizer. Those with genetically dry skin, and tend to have skin conditions such as eczema, are the only ones who should be using it regularly. The rest of us with ‘normal’ skin do not actually need it.
Moisturizers are designed to hydrate dry, tight and itchy skin. The mixture of water and emollients (minerals and plant oils), stop water from evaporating easily from the skin’s surface, helping to retain its moisture. The main issue with moisturizers according to Dr Eckel, is that moisturizers make the skin LAZY becoming less and less able to rehydrate itself. This means that we then need even more moisturizer to relieve dryness, creating a very expensive cycle.
The skin is self-correcting however; the process of skin renewal slows down as we age leaving dead skin cells to gather on the surface of the skin giving a rough and dull appearance. When we women notice this, the first thing we usually do is reach straight for the moisturizer. By doing this, the skin will learn that it no longer needs to produce much of its own moisture, making the skin even drier and reliant on the moisturizer. The skin will become thinner, making fine lines and wrinkles more and more visible.
What was really needed in the first place (rather than reaching for the moisturizer) according to Dr Eckel was actually an exfoliator!
Furthermore, using thick and especially oily moisturizers can result in the sticking of dead skin cells to the skin’s surface - clogging pores and contributing to rosacea and acne! It’s no wonder we’ve seen such an increase in adult acne, with up to 44% of women suffering from spots in adult life!The miss-marketing of moisturizers needs to stop!
If your skin is truly dry, then of course your skin is craving a good moisturizing cream but, if it is normal, then rather than slapping on thick moisturizers daily, why not try a really good exfoliator and see how that helps? (Just make sure the exfoliator is the right one for your skin type!)
Better yet, try using a professional exfoliating skin care device such as the Glo-me to remove all those dead skin cells that build up on the face and follow that with a high SPF Sunscreen. With the science of skincare becoming ever more developed, we now know that exfoliation and sunscreen are the most important components of one’s skin-care routine, helping you keep a youthful and healthy appearance.
To sum it up: Ditch the moisturizer unless you have truly dry skin!