Find out how many times a day you should moisturise dry skin and which products are most effective at hydrating.
'How Often Should I Moisturise Dry Skin?'
Firstly, you should include two moisturisers in your skincare regimen:
- For daytime use
- For nightly use
Your evening moisturiser should contain emollients. There's that word again! All moisturising ingredients fit into one of three categories:
- Humectants act like a magnet, attracting water and trapping it in the skin.
- Occlusives sit on top of the skin and prevent hydration from escaping.
- Emollients soften and condition the skin.
Emollients help to improve the skin's natural barrier function, which promotes a healthy and hydrated state. Emollient ingredients are the most important for dry skin, as they help fix the cause of dryness: an impaired barrier function.
Examples of emollient skincare ingredients:
- Shea butter
- Jojoba oil
- Coconut oil
Emollients are even more effective when combined with occlusive ingredients. These latter ingredients provide a temporary second skin that allows skin to replenish itself more quickly.
Examples of occlusive skincare ingredients:
- Liquid paraffin
- Mineral oil
A combination of emollients and occlusives supplies dry skin with the intense moisture it needs. Such products take a little while to sink in, which is why they're best suited to night-time use.
Emollient-rich night-time moisturisers we recommend for dry skin:
- Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream
- First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
- Elizabeth Arden Original Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant
Now, for your morning moisturiser: this product should include several humectants. Humectants are lightweight, non-greasy ingredients that lock water into the skin. You daytime moisturiser of choice should also be packed with vitamins to replenish and repair dry skin.
Vitamin B3 (niacinamide) is a very useful ingredient for dry skin. Recent dermatological research has shown that vitamin B3 helps to repair skin's barrier function, in part through increasing the skin's own production of ceramides, or waxy lipids.
Humectant moisturisers with B vitamins we recommend for dry skin:
Is It Enough to Moisturise Dry Skin Twice a Day?
Sometimes yes, but not always.
Certain behaviours and environments can cause further stress to skin. While normal-to-oily skin types are better able to adapt to stressful situations, dry skin types need help.
If you suffer from dry skin, you should always apply moisturiser after you:
- Bathe or shower
- Fly a long distance
- Sit by a fire
- Expose skin to water (hand washing, rain, swimming)
- Expose skin to wind (skiing, cycling, even a walk on a windy day)
If you moisturise consistently after these occasions, your dry skin should stay hydrated. If not, you may want to try a different moisturiser, either from our recommendations above or from our dry skincare store.