Updated: Jan 19, 2022
What is Dry Skin?
Dry skin occurs when our skin lacks moisture and can be caused by several issues. So it is essential to understand the skin and the skin's barrier. Our skin barrier protects the skin and its moisture content with linoleic acid-rich lipids. The loss of lipids causes the skin barrier's function to break down, and the skin loses large amounts of water and becomes dry. Dryness occurs naturally over time in aging skin as the skin's proteoglycan production starts to slow down. Proteoglycans such as hyaluronic acid help the skin absorb and hold moisture. Skin dryness actually increases when you practice improper cleansing, moisturizing, and are exposed to a harsh climate, removing the skin's natural moisturizing factor or NMF. This is also known as TEWL, or transepidermal water loss. In short, TEWL is increased when the epidermis is compromised, and the natural moisturizing factor is decreased. A lack of EFA's can also contribute to transepidermal water loss. When our body lacks the EFA's, using a supplement like Omega-3 Spectrum helps retain moisture. We see it physically on our skin.
The good news is we can fix this issue. Using a good quality cleanser like Ultra Gentle Cleanser, taking EFAs, adding a hydrating serum such as our Fractionated Hyaluronic Acid Serum to help retain the moisture, and using a lipid-rich moisturizer such as our Lipid Replenishing Soft Cream to replenish the skin. We also want to make sure we hydrate our body by drinking plenty of water and fluids high in electrolytes. Electrolytes help retain moisture and conduct electricity within the body when combined with water. This process enables cells to regulate pH balance and maintain homeostasis, promoting a healthy epidermal barrier.
Aging and Dry skin
Hyaluronic acid, collagen, and elastin all decrease as we age. As we mentioned previously, hyaluronic acid is one of the proteoglycans that helps our skin absorb and hold moisture in the skin. Collagen is what keeps our skin looking youthful, plump and prevents wrinkles. Elastin, sounding much like the word, maintains our skin's elasticity and resilience to help the sagging of the skin. After age 25, the collagen and elastin in our skin decrease about 1-2% per year.
I know! That is not great news!!! How do we stop this? How can we regain that lost collagen and elastin and maintain what we have left?
We hit the problem head-on and treat it from all 3 sides: topically, internally, and mechanically.
What treatments can we do?
One of the best mechanical treatments for collagen production is medical microneedling. Microneedling or Collagen Induction Therapy can help restore up to a year's worth of collagen while also improving the appearance of the skin. Microneedling causes tiny micro-injuries to the skin, forcing the skin into a state of repair. What does the skin do when it is in this state of repair? The microneedling device creates tiny microchannels and stimulates the immune system and blood flow, which help remove debris and clean up the deep skin layers. Secondly, as the wound is repaired, cells contribute to the growth of the intracellular matrix creating the structure for new tissue growth. Finally, new tissue is made for facial rejuvenation resulting in more supple, healthy, plump skin.
When we speak about topical treatments, dry skin and aging skin go hand in hand. Post microneedling, our skin can feel tight and dry, so we must treat it correctly. Using an Omega 3spectrum and Buffered Vitamin C supplements and hydrating internally and externally are critical. By replenishing these vital nutrients topically using Fractionated Hyaluronic Acid Serum and our Lipid Replenishing Soft Cream to protect our skin's barrier, we will only add to our skin's overall health. Vitamin D3 (aka the sunlight vitamin) is the main vitamin present in the epidermis. Vitamin D also helps to prevent dry skin and aid in moisture retention. Vitamin C can enhance skin barrier function and reduce transepidermal water loss or TEWL.
As we see dry and aging skin are treated very similarly. We can yield beautiful results when we protect, care for, and treat the largest organ in our body internally and externally.