Have you noticed dry patches on your skin that cause itchiness? Or maybe there's a recent dull texture to your complexion. These signs and other similar symptoms might indicate a loss of water in your skin cells. In other words, you have dehydrated skin.
People wrongly mix up dry and dehydrated skin, treating them as the same condition. However, dry skin indicates a lack of natural oils, while dehydration means your skin lacks an adequate supply of water. The body needs plenty of water to protect sensitive cells from damage. It also uses water to flush waste in the form of sweat and urine.
As the weather becomes colder and the air gets drier, dehydration becomes more common. Sometimes, the dehydrated skin symptoms may affect other body parts, causing dizziness, weakness, and faintness. Besides drinking water to replenish your skin cells, there are other steps to reverse the effects of dehydration. A diligent skincare regimen, including microneedling treatments and a relaxing facial, will keep your skin hydrated.
Let's learn more about the five warning signs of dehydrated skin:
Sign #1: Itchy Skin
Does your skin feel itchy after taking a warm shower in the winter? Maybe a day at the beach caused discomfort that had you scratching your body. If these symptoms sound familiar, there's a chance your skin lacks water from the weather. Temperature changes can cause dehydration, which manifests through itchy skin. However, resist the temptation to scratch your dehydrated skin because it will lead to flaking.
To manage this condition, adjust your shower temperature to a moderately warm level. You'll want to avoid hot baths because they strip moisture from your skin. Also, keep your body hydrated and drink up to three litres of water daily. While you have no control over the weather outside, you can use a humidifier indoors during cold months.
Sign #2: Dull Skin
Glowing skin looks radiant, but it doesn't maintain forever. If your complexion looks dull and tired, that could be one of the dehydrated skin symptoms. To combat the dullness, adopt a skincare routine to rejuvenate your body's hydration levels. The body requires adequate water to produce new cells after old ones die off. Without sufficient water intake, the dead cells will accumulate on your skin, preventing new ones from flourishing on the surface.
The dead skin cells also clog the pores, leading to breakouts and skin irritation. A gentle cleanser can unclog the pores, but there's a need to resolve the source of dehydration. For instance, alcohol is notorious for causing dehydration because it triggers the body to generate excess urine. Lower your alcohol intake and adopt a healthy diet to include salmon, eggs, or flax seeds.
Sign #3: Increased Skin Sensitivity
Like your body, your skin becomes prone to irritation when dehydrated. Hydrated cells create a moisture barrier between your skin and harmful molecules. If the layer gets stripped, the skin comes in direct contact with bacteria. These pollutants will affect your skin health, making your body feel less comfortable. Symptoms of increased skin sensitivity include rashes, dry patches, and redness.
Factors like air conditioning in the summer and heating systems in the winter could cause skin sensitivity. Use external cooling and heating sources moderately during extreme weather. Avoid using harsh antiseptic soaps to treat rashes and skin redness. Instead, use hydrating sheet masks and night creams to reverse skin sensitivity.
Sign #4: Fine Lines & Wrinkles
Another sign of dehydrated skin is that it wrinkles during a pinch test. Think of healthy skin as fresh fruit with ripe insides. Ripe fruits are firm to hold with juices making up the insides. As the fruit becomes stale, the skin sags and starts to wrinkle. The same also happens to the skin when dehydration worsens.
A quick pinch test can answer the burning questions about your skin's hydration levels. To perform it, gently squeeze a small portion of skin on your cheek or the back of your hand. Let go after a few seconds. If the skin doesn't return to normal, your skin may be dehydrated. If it takes time for your skin to bounce back, consider increasing your water intake.
While drinking water helps, your diet and lifestyle habits can prevent your body from retaining moisture. Protect your skin by sealing the moisture with hydrating oils, creams, and other skin care products. Avoid caffeine products, replacing them with fruits and vegetables instead.
Sign #5: Health Problems
Beyond your skin, dehydration also affects other parts of your body. Sometimes, subtle symptoms can give you clues about your skin condition. Look out for signs like dark circles around your eyes, extreme thirst, and darker urine. These are common dehydrated skin symptoms that emerge when compounded with other health problems.