Cracked skin is a nightmare, isn’t it?
Although skin dryness and itchiness doesn’t quite lead to fatal, life and death situations, it sure does make surviving peacefully one tough task.
Naturally, we tend to resort to the use of lotions and creams to keep our skin soft, smooth, and of course, bearable. But not all moisturizers suit our skin, and not all of them are effective.
And that, in turn, brings us to a very fundamental and crucial question; how do moisturizers work to keep our skin soft and smooth? What’s in them that gives the ability to retain the hydration within our skin layers?
Understanding this root process can help us figure out which moisturizers will suit our skin. And it may even help us identify true moisturizers from the fake ones, i.e., tubes of creamy formulas kept on the shelves with the tag of lotions and moisturizers.
So, let’s get to it. Let’s uncover the true essence of a moisturizer; what makes it up? What happens when we apply it? And which ones are the best in the market currently?
What Makes Up a Moisturizer?
The chemistry of a moisturizer is rather simple. Generally, dermatologists explain that there are four major types of ingredients in a moisturizer, including:
- Occlusives (like white petrolatum)
- Humectants (like hyaluronic acid)
- Emollients (like Glycerin)
- Ceramides (like Hexadecanamide)
Of course, there’s no generic formula for a moisturizer. Each cosmetic moisturizer manufacturing company comes up with its own unique formula, wherein it uses a different combination of the four fundamental ingredients. Before coming to the market, the formula gets tested and tried in laboratories. After which, it gets approved for public use.
How Do Moisturizers Keep the Skin Smooth & Soft?
As mentioned earlier, the four key ingredients work together to bring a soft, smooth, and hydrating formula. The work begins deep in the skin, where ceramides from the moisturizers replace the fats, which may be missing from amongst the skin layers of skin cells. Ceramides basically serve as barrier-repair ingredients. They fix the deepest issue to help the outer skin function appropriately.
The emollients aim to cure the roughness. These chemicals fill in the cracks in the skin, so the skin feels smooth and soft. Once applied to a surface, it makes it possible for the other surface to glide over it smoothly. Moreover, the humectants pull in water from the deep layer of the skins while the occlusives form a seal to the skin. Occlusive ingredients serve as a protective barrier, keeping the newly acquired hydration of the skin intact and safe.
At times, some companies may use only one, two, or three of the categories of ingredients. But that affects the impact of moisture accordingly. With that said, here it’s become clear. There are 2 ways in which moisturizers work, i.e., trapping the moisture and restoring the moisture of skin that’s lost, particularly in the dermis, which is the outermost layer.
Characteristics of a Moisturizers
We talked about fake formulas being marketed as authentic moisturizers. How can you possibly identify if the moisture is authentic? Well, it’s super simple. Check out its ingredients. If they conform to the four key ingredients mentioned above, it’s likely that the moisturizer is authentic. Alternately, you can look out for the following characteristics:
- It feels silky and glides on the skin.
- It doesn’t possess any specific smell.
- It shouldn’t feel oily.
- It’s lightweight and doesn’t form a separate layer on the skin.
- It should contain a natural moisturizing factor that makes it absorb quickly.
Best Moisturizers to Try
Some of our best recommendations for moisturizers 2021 are as follows:
- Natura Bissé
Another great addition to our existing lot of phenomenal moisturizers is this cbd body lotion that uses CBD and hemp seed oil. Like other top-tier lotions and fragrances mentioned above, it is non-greasy, lightweight, and brings healthy hydration with organic herb goodness.
All in all, the chemistry of moisturizers is exactly where we can decode how they are making our skin soft and smooth. The more dedicated ingredients they use, the better results they yield.