Sunday, October 16, 2011

Skin Moisturizers


An Overview Of Skin Moisturizers


The water content of the skin varies but for the epidermis it is approximately 80%, this is the same water content as in other cells. The very surface of the skin, the stratum corneum, is made up of dead skin cells and this layer is much drier, with the water content varying between 10-30%. The stratum corneum, when it is dry, will tend to lose its luster and produce what we know as dry skin. In normal circumstances there will be movement of water from the dermis up through the more superficial layers of the skin, the water then in turn will evaporate. Skin that has low water content will dry and fissure, this makes it more prone to both bacterial and fungal infection. Moisturizers are designed to reduce water loss from the epidermis. These do not reverse sun damage but they do prevent further dryness. They also can protect the barrier to soot and dirt and there is a temporary feeling of smoothness when these are used. The skin may swell slightly and cause some loss of fine wrinkles. The pores may appear to be smaller because of this swelling. Moisturizing is not required for those with oily skin. Not every skin will be dry, there is the occlusive layer that waterproofs the skin. This is called the stratum corneum. This is essentially a fat protein sandwich, sebum that is secreted from the oil glands will also have a moisturizing effect on the skin. Moisturizers are essentially a combination of occlusive and humectants. There are a number of different skin types that require different skin care.

Dry Skin:

Dry skin is more commonly seen in lighter coloured individuals. Moisturizing should be applied to the skin after washing. It should be used when the weather is cold, small amounts of moisturizer should be applied, and it is best to have multiple applications rather than using an excessive amount at one time.

Moisturizing Of The Hands:

Moisturizers that are best used for the hands will have an oil-based silicone. This is a water repellent. It also will not allow the normal fats of the surface of the skin to be washed away. These products protect the skin even after washing the hands.

Skin Moisturizers For Different Skin Types

Oily Skin:

The moisturizers for patients with oily skin should be non-comedogenic or oil-free. See also

Dry Skin:
There are a small percentage of people who actually have dry skin on their face, these people will be dry on the cheeks and jawline. Many of these patients work outside in rough elements, and many of these people are over 50 years of age. For these patients a creamy moisturizer in a lotion or cream is very effective. If they do not have sensitive skin, they can wear whatever products feels good. The reason for the paucity of dry skin on the face, is that there is an abundance of sebaceous glands on the face to prevent dryness. These are particularly active in young people, in men, and in many normal women. If a person is scaly in the center of the face central forehead, around the nose, and on the central chin, this may be seborrheic dermatitis. The use of a heavy moisturizer in people who have central facial dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis) could lead to acne.

Normal - Combination Skin:
Most people have oily skin on the forehead, nose, and chin (called th T-zone), and dryer skin on the cheeks and neck. When the humidity is low, it may be necessary to moisturize the face. The most prudent of patients ,male or female, will select a non-comedogenic moisturizer which contains a minimum SPF of 15 in it for daily use. There are legions of such products reasonably priced, which will prevent cancer and photoaging.

Moisturizers - Body Skin:
Because there are very few sebaceous (oil) glands on the arms and legs, moisturizers are very important. Winter, dry climates, and windy climates are very hard on the skin of the body. Many body lotions incorporate sunblocks for a daily routine. This is very important for sun exposed skin. Often heavy moisturizers such as petrolatum Aquaphor, Cetaphil cream, Neutrogena Norwegian Formula, and other Jar or tube moisturizers are needed for dry climates. What may be appropriate for facial skin may be too thin for the arms, legs, hands, and feet.