Turns out, you could have been treating your dry skin like dehydrated skin your whole life and not even known. Um, rewind—does that mean they’re different? Hate to break it to you, but yep. One is a skin type and one is a condition, and (plot twist) your skin could be both at the same time. We turned to board certified dermatologist, Dr. Joyce Imahiyerobo-Ip from Vibrant Dermatology in Wellesley, MA, to help set the record straight.
So, what's the difference between dry and dehydrated skin?
“While people often use the terms dry skin and dehydrated skin interchangeably, they are actually two distinctly different skin conditions. Dry skin is a skin type characterized by decreased oil production. Dehydrated skin refers to a skin state where the top layer of the skin has less water content than it should. Anyone can experience dehydrated skin—even those with an oily skin type.”
How do you know which one you have?
“In the case of dry skin, decreased oil production results in abnormal barrier function resulting in red, inflamed and very itchy skin. Dry skin often feels rough and can look flaky. Dehydrated skin on the other hand looks dull, feels tight and shows accelerated signs of aging such as an increased number of fine lines and wrinkles.”