As with any product, choosing the right moisturisers depends on the type of skin you have, as well as understanding your skin’s current needs, which are always changing. That is why it’s a good idea to see a skin care professional regularly so that you can be prescribed the right products for your individual skin. There are so many products on the market, it can be confusing as to which ones are essential and which ones aren’t.
A moisturiser is one of the fundamentals of skin care. The purpose of a moisturiser is to increase or maintain hydration levels within the Stratum Corneum – the outermost layer of the skin. A moisturiser isn’t necessarily about actively promoting change in the skin. Rather, maintaining the skin’s natural moisturising factor (NMF) and, in turn, slowing the rate of premature ageing and free radical damage. There are three main types of moisturisers – humectants, occlusives and emollients – and they each work in different ways to maintain/increase hydration levels in the skin.
The 3 Types of Moisturisers
Humectants are ingredients that are able to attract and draw water to themselves. Either from the atmosphere or from the lower layers of the epidermis and dermis. As well as increasing hydration levels in the outer layers of the skin, this increased hydration “plumps” the skin. Leading to a temporary reduction in fine lines and wrinkles. Popular humectants found in products are Hyaluronic acid and Lactic acid (in small percentages).
Occlusive ingredients work by trapping moisture on the surface of the skin, therefore reducing trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL). It also works to smooth the skin by filling in the gaps between the corneocytes in the Stratum Corneum. Therefore, acting as an emollient. The effects of occlusive ingredients are only temporary. They stop as soon as they are removed from the skin. Look for ingredients such as Shea Butter, Macadamia Seed Oil, Jojoba Oil, Beeswax and Silicones.
Emollients are ingredients within products that are used to smooth and soften the skin. They fill cracks and gaps in between corneocytes in the Stratum Corneum. Similar to occlusives, they prevent water loss on the outer layer of the skin by providing a barrier. Common emollients are Shea Butter, Tocopheryl acetate, Lecithin, Vitamin E and Seabuckthorn fruit oil.
Which Moisturisers are Best for you?
An oily/congested/breakout-prone skin
Your skin will more than likely want to go for a moisturiser that isn’t too heavy or thick because of the higher amount of oil in the skin. Steering clear of emollients and occlusives is best for these skin types. Remembering that an oily/combination skin can still be dehydrated, Humectants work best for these skin types.
- Perfect for normal, oily or ageing skin with added Vitamin C – Aspect Dr Oil Free Moisturiser
- Helps mattify skin to reduce shine – Aspect Sheer Hydration
- Anti-inflammatory and anti-ungal properties – CosMedix Shineless
- Antimicrobial properties to reduce acne – Societe Skin Hydration Complex
You can use either an emollient or occlusive moisturiser. It can also be about finding the right texture that feels good on your skin.
- Our most popular product moituriser – Aspect Dr Resveratrol Moisturising Cream
- Epidermal repair to rejuvenate skin – Osmosis MD Quench
- Skin plumping moisturiser – Osmosis MD Hydrate
- 4-in-1 moisturiser; day, night, neck and eye cream – Aspect Phytostat 9
- For ultra-hydrating ingredients – CosMedix Humidify
- Alleviate inflamation, wrinkles and texture of skin – CosMedix Elite X-Age
Sensitive or Reactive Skin
It’s best using something that acts as an occlusive. Usually these skin types are barrier impaired and need something to trap that moisture on the epidermis.
- Intensely hydrating balm, can be mixed with other moisturisers – CosMedix Rescue
- Anti-inflammatory support, can be mixed with other moisturisers – Osmosis MD Immerse
- Improve barrier function support and ageing skin – Aspect SMC
- Alleviates and helps prevent irritation post treatments or for senstive skin- CosMedix Emulsion
- Great for dry or sensitive skin – Aspect Dr Hyaluronic Serum
- Encouraging healthy collagen production and great for post treatment, sensitive skin – Societe Skin Hydration Complex
- Does exactly what it’s name states, calms sensitive skin – Societe Claming Relief Balm
New technology in cosmeceuticals means that moisturisers now contain specialised ingredients that can influence cells in the deeper layers of the skin via cell to cell communication. Ingredients such as peptides, growth factors and antioxidants provide that extra support to the skin, however if you are really serious about effecting change in your skin, applying them topically as serums under your moisturiser is the smart way to go.
Moisturisers with UV Protection
Still not sure?
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