Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Hydration and Your Skin

Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Hydration and Your Skin

Article excerpt

In an article titled "Skin Hydration," published by Aesthetics, nurse practitioner Lorna Bowes details the role of hydration In healthy skin. According to Ms. Bowes, "Hydrobalance--the water balance in our skin--is a balance between adequate supply and generation of water and prevention or reduction of transepidermal water loss (TEWL) in the stratum corneum (SC), or the outer layer of the skin, moderated by lipids and natural moisturizing factor (NMF)." She quotes experts who say that drinking eight glasses of water isn't enough to keep your skin looking youthful and hydrated, but targeting the SC, epidermis, and dermal components with certain ingredients can help your skin look and feel fresh. Bowes lists agents that cause water loss in our skin, such as hot water, detergents, pollution, air travel, air conditioning, and even friction from clothing. In addition, she points out that the autumn and winter months provide even more opportunities for water loss, due to the lowered humidity of these seasons and the increased propensity for people to take hot baths, further drying the skin. Fortunately, you don't have to accept the role of passive victim when dry skin strikes; Bowes shares several ingredients to look for in your skin care products that protect against moisture loss from the skin.

Topical treatments. Moisturizers. Moisturizers can increase moisture levels In the skin through reduction in evaporation and sweating, increased non-negative matrix factorization (NMF), or increased gylcosaminoglycans and improved skin barrier function. Moisturizers come in different carrier or vehicle formulations, such as ointments, creams, lotions, serums, and gels. Humectants. Humectants are the sponges of the skin--drawing water from the environment and atmosphere or from the dermis and underlying tissues. They are fundamentally short-lasting hydrators, but many humectants also boast additional benefits, such as anti-aging effects. …

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