Tuesday, February 18, 2014

That Was Brrr, Y'all!

Finally, some tropical weather around here!  Because lord knows we had enough of this:

Thanks, doge

But now let's deconstruct that dry, itchy, prickly, tight skin that we are so happy to be done with.

Dryness is a skin type of which the characteristics include lower than average skin oil production, small pores, the tendency towards fine lines and wrinkles, and occasional to frequent instances of tight, irritated, flaking, and peeling skin.

Dehydration is a skin condition characterized by a lack of moisture in the skin and the resulting textural and observable characteristics similar to dryness, however dehydrated skin can occur in any skin type.  Because the presence of adequate moisture within skin cells varies based on internal and external factors that may change, for example, diet, stress, medications, sleep, and water consumption, where as dry skin is a genetic disposition, the two have different indications for successful treatment to maintain the health, comfort, and beauty of the skin.

In both cases, the Stratum corneum can look rough and flaky, like this:

Since dry type and dehydrated conditions happen so frequently together and share symptoms, they are often lumped together and treated mainly through occlusion, the ancient technology of placing a barrier ointment on the skin. Historically, these ointments included greasy fats like whale blubber, butter, and tree nut and seed butters. For the past approximately 150 years, petrolatum has been the standard for dermatological occlusion, allowing a complete seal to be formed around compromised skin, with no risk of breakdown or rancidification as with natural butters and oils.

While petrolatum occlusion is still an important technique (see post-peel care) skincare science has come so far beyond this basic standard that it is now possible to address these concerns at a cellular level without the need to leave a greasy film on the skin day in and day out.

Better yet, certain ingredients which were once used as single ingredient occlusive ointments are now being incorporated in much smaller doses into finished emulsions so that their transepidermal water loss-preventing characteristics can be utilized while still taking advantage of newer humectant technology and in conjunction with ingredients that address the integrity of the phospholipid cell bilayers.

Dry skin questions?  Call me at the studio!  504-717-4466, and HAPPY CARNIVAL!

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