Despite variety of choices available, choosing a good skin moisturizer could be quite frustrating. Lofty promises to improve your skin texture, enhance firmness of your skin and reduce facial lines don’t really help. In fact, after you’ve already tried half a dozen of skin moisturizers without any significant effect on your skin, these claims could be more confusing than helpful. Nevertheless, you have to remember this: a good skin moisturizer is your most important weapon that will help you combat your skin escalating dryness as you get elder.
Here is the truth about skin moisturizers – regardless how well formulated your moisturizer is it won’t change the structure of your skin and won’t prevent formation of wrinkles. A standard moisturizer won’t remove your wrinkles and firmness will be only temporal, but it will make your skin smoother, more flexible and will definitely increase its glow. Also when the skin is moist wrinkles tend to look not as deep as when the skin is dry.
How do skin moisturizers work?
Moisturizers are all about creating artificial moisturizing mechanisms similar to the ones in your skin. This can be achieved in two ways: either by preventing water loss or by attracting additional water from inner layers of your skin to the surface. The first is achieved by using occlusive agents, while the second can be done by using humectant agents.
Occlusive agents create an oily barrier on the surface of your skin. This barrier slows natural evaporation of water. You might know some of occlusive agents – for example olive oil, almond oil, cocoa butter, beeswax and lanolin. Some of occlusive agents may feel heavy on skin and cause acne breakouts in acne prone women. To avoid this problem some moisturizers are based on silicone. Silicone has an oily feel but doesn’t clog pores.
Another group of agents – humectant agents – works by attracting water from deeper layers of skin to the surface. These do not feel greasy on skin. Some examples of humectants are hyaluronic acid, pyrrolidone carboxylic acid, lactates and urea.
Skin moisturizers typically contain 65-85 percent of water. Water hydrates your skin and facilitates absorption of your moisturizer’s ingredients. Water to oil content ratio is the point of difference between day creams and night creams. While day creams contain more water and have a lighter feel, night creams are heavier in oil which also has its own benefits.
How to choose a moisturizer?
While there is no doubt that there are good products that produce results, always take the claims done by cosmetic manufacturers with a grain of salt. Independent studies actually showed more than once that $30-40 moisturizers do not necessarily perform better than the ones you get for $2. Expensive moisturizers could have a nicer feel on skin, but when it comes to their effectiveness they often performed worse than the cheap ones (This study was done by Consumer Reports. Also see another reference here: Anti-Aging Cream, Wikipedia ).
- who needs a moisturizer?
- moisturizing tips for dry, sensitive, oily and combination skin
- best moisturizers – moisturizers that really work.
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