Monday, 7 November 2011

Cheat Sheet - Dry or Dehydrated?

I change my skincare 'wardrobe' every time I change my actual clothing wardrobe over from winter to summer and vice versa. However, this weekend I realised I had probably left it a couple of weeks too late as my skin was dull as ditchwater, flat and dry to touch. That coupled with the blog posts and tweets I've seen recently about dry skin/skin feeling tight etc leads me to think this little guide might prove useful.

Are you DRY or DEHYDRATED? (or both!)

Dry and dehydrated skins have similar characteristics, but different underlying reasons.

Dry Skin - normally a skin type but can be a temporary skin condition
  • caused by lack of oil in the skin
  • small pores
  • 'tight' feeling
  • may be flaky
  • milia, blackheads and spots may still be present
  • skin looks dull
  • skin is not plump
  • doesn't absorb products easily
  • easily irritated - more likely to suffer reactions to products
  • aggravated by poor skincare

Dehydrated Skin - is a skin condition affecting any skin type - including DRY
  • caused by lack of water in the skin
  • pores can be large or small
  • skin feels tight and dry although it can confusingly sometimes look oily and have breakouts
  • absorbs moisturisers really quickly
  • blackheads and spots are still visible
  • makeup disappears (and goes patchy) throughout the day as the skin is absorbing any water in your foundation
  • skin looks 'ashen' 
  • aggravated by lifestyle circumstances - may suffer from a lot of headaches

Skin is made up of 70% water - around  20-30% of that is in the epidermis (top layer of the skin). In normal circumstances, your hydrolipidic film acts as a regulator and barrier - retaining moisture and protecting against germs. If - for whatever reason that is compromised, the moisture in the epidermis evaporates too quickly and the normal, healthy state of the skin is compromised.

The reality is that most of us at one time or another - but ESPECIALLY at this time of the year - are dehydrated.

Any and all of the following can cause dehydration - standby!:
  1. Environment - wind, cold air, dry air, too much sun, air conditioning, central heating
  2. Diet - the wrong foods, alcohol, caffeine, not eating enough water-heavy foods, not drinking enough
  3. Lifestyle - stress (hello?!), poor skincare routine, using the wrong products, medication - including birth control, smoking
  4. Genetics - monthly cycle, pregnancy
It is quite common to be both dry and dehydrated but if by looking at the above you have ascertained that you are one or the other - these do's and don't might help.

Do and Do Not:
  • Do upgrade your moisturiser to something suitable for dry skin if you recognise the signs - go for products using the words 'nourishing'
  • Do change your moisturiser to something labelled 'hydra' or 'hydrating' if you suspect you are dehydrated
  • Make sure you are not using products that are too harsh or too stripping for either
  • Do steer clear of foaming anything  - keep the bubbles for your dishes
  • Do use balms, oils and serums for dry
  • Do use milks, specified oils and treatments for dehydrated
  • Do stay away from mineral oils, silicones (in skincare - not makeup), lanolins and synthetic fragrance which will make a dehydrated skin worse and make a dry skin scream for help

A word on supplements - omega oils found in either flax or fish oil supplements will help both dry and dehydrated skins - however, you'll need a good 3 months to see the benefits on your skin so if you want to think ahead for the deep winter of end Jan/Feb you could do worse than to get cracking now.


    1. Thank you so much for this, these cheat sheets of yours are always so helpful! I've just started taking fish oil, do you think it may also help a little with eczema? I have an absolute nightmare on my hands at the moment...

      1. Omega 3 & Omega 6 do wonders for exzema but try to take the supplements twice a day. It will take a while for any results to show but if you generally keep up a good moisturising routine you should notice the difference. I've suffered from dry skin and especially exzema all my life... It's not fun.

      2. I know this is years later but I'm hoping someone will see this. BLEACH BATHS. Sounds scary, I know, but recently I have been getting the worst eczema outbreaks on the backs of my hands. Red, itchy, and embarrassing. I did a lot of research and when I heard about bleach baths I thought that can't be good for you but a lot of doctors have recommended it. Before bed I filled up my sink with water and put a tiny bit of bleach in there, let the back of my hands soak for ten minutes then rinsed off with water then followed by a thick lotion then went to sleep. I did this every other night, only three times total, and my eczema is gone and my hands are so smooth and normal I could cry. Bacteria plays a big part in eczema and the bleach is an anti microbial that kills the bacteria. Life changing. Best of luck to you.

      3. Kristie - You may have just given me a life saver, my eczema has currently come back out (with vengeance) all over my legs. I'll figure out a way to adapt it but definitely giving it a try because nothing else seems to be working!

      4. Kristie, how much bleach do you put in the sink? The eczema on my left hand and is terrible, but Im a big scared if bleach. What is the safe amount?

      5. Whoa. Isn't there something a bit less irritating and drying than bleach? Sounds pretty scary. For those of you who would like an alternative miracle worker - Elidel (or immune suppressing creams - prescription). It's like cortisol without the side effects, meaning you can use it on your face, and it has absolutely restored my face to normality where nothing else helped. There was controversy about it being a carcinogen in 2005, but as of 2015, that claim has been refuted (to my knowledge). Can only recommend!

    2. omg such a useful post - thank you for this. I am most definitely dehydrated!

      I'm loving the All About Eve/Alpha-H Anti-Ageing Oil when my skin feels extra parched, just a drop or two added to my moisturiser turns it into something heavenly. I'm guessing you know about this already! ;)

      Nic x

    3. Do you have any good mid-priced hydrating moisturisers to recommend for dehydrated oily skin? My skin is just uncontrollable at the moment - my foundation disappears and I can't seem to keep my skin feeling normal!

      1. My saviors and Holy grail are; Pure Hemp Oil and Rose Hip oil! Neal's yard Rose Cleansing balm(which Caroline loves) is mainly this 2 oils.. and they are inexpensive in the health shop, Just need to use refrigeration, I keep a very tiny in a dropper in the bathroom and the big bottle on the fridge and just top up as needed....

    4. Another gem of a post, I have always felt the need to change skincare at the change of the seasons, thankyou for rubber stamping this, and great recommendations. That is what I love about your posts - there is always the follow through. Thankyouthankyouthankyou x

    5. thankyou caroline
      makes good sense my skin is going crazy at the moment (hormonal) funny age clarins hydromask really good x

    6. I just drink litres and litres of water - I work in an office with air conditioning that is so dehydrating it's like I have a permanent hangover, so I'm constantly knocking back water.

    7. Amazing as always! Definitely more in the dehydrated camp. Thanks and for the giveaway goodies too. x

    8. Big fan of Waitrose Baby Bottom Butter - for £2.89 (£2.89!!) you wake up the next morning with buttery soft skin, and it's perfect to slather on before long winter walks too! If I could marry this product I would. A more luxurious option would be Aromatherapy Associates Overnight Repair Mask - smells divine and does what it says.


      1. I can't wait to try the Waitrose B B Butter!!!!! Hope the Aroma Assoc Overnight repair Mask is available in UK as I want to try that too ...Thank You.

    9. I love that Origins mask, it's excellent.

    10. Fantastic post! Never thought I suffered from dehydrated skin till reading this! Good job I just splashed the cash on Emma Hardies hydrating lighter lotion.

      @ Cami - I too have oily skin. I saw an earlier post here, recommending Kate Somerville's Goat Milk cream for oily/acne prone skin. Not exactly mid priced at 51quid, but the Emma Hardie is cheaper (£35) and also recommended for oilier skins. Hope that helps.

    11. love love love the cheat sheets... i always say i have oily skin but from reading the above i think it is dehydrated and i think by stripping it to get rid of the oilyness i am making it worse... :D

    12. I really hope you might be able to help me.

      My skin feels slightly dry in places, such as my fore head. I react at almost everything i use, my skin will go bright red, feel like it's burning, etc with trying many different products. I get spots, my foundation wears off quite easily but i can't decide whether my skin would be dry or dehydrated. I hope you can help as i have no idea what to buy for my skin. I stick to very basic products at the moment for fear of my face burning!
      Thank you so much xx

      1. unsure as to where you're from in the world Stacey, but have a look at Moogoo, i have awfully dry/dehydrated skin and it is very sensitive (eczema prone) and moogoo has helped wonders! they ship world wide (bonus lol) the full cream moisturiser they make may help you x

        i also use AUM Organics, and 100% pure organic Jojoba oil. and Happy Skin Care, Hope this helps, ( from Ellie :) )

    13. For my dehydrated skin I used Monu Extra Rich Night Cream (after makeup remover by Estee Lauder) followed by Monu Calming Cream, which stopped the itchy / flakiness. Very pleased with the results. From

    14. This helps a lot actually, I read this in the past and wasn't too sure what I was but now am sure this is extra helpful, thanks, talk soon x.

    15. My other half needs some help with his routine. He uses an AWFUL neutrogena 2 in 1 mask/cleanser and clinique gel moisturiser. He gets seriously flakey skin on his forehead, but will bizarrely always have one painful cyst looking spot somewhere on his face (sometimes on the forehead). He wouldn't use anything you would need to polish off or spend time on (probably a good thing...he's going nowhere near my emma hardie!!!). I don't know if the gel moisturiser just isnt doing enough because the cleanser is stripping the natural oils maybe?! Thanks, Lydia.

    16. Please please please reply when you have a minute? Im scared he will lose interest if i leave it any longer! haha. Lydia

    17. Please please please reply when you have a minute? Im scared he will lose interest if i leave it any longer! haha. Lydia

      1. Hi Lyd,

        Get him onto Anthony For Men - in SpaceNK and online. It looks 'blokeish' enough but is actually really lovely product. Step away from the Neutrogena. They do a nice algae cleanser - no faff - and a good basic moisturiser.

      2. Thank you so much! Sorry for being a pain! :)

      3. Hi Caroline, Just wanted to let you know he is really happy with the improvement in his skin and it shows in his confidence. Thank you so much for your help. :-)

    18. Hey Caroline,
      I'm 19 and really confused about my skin lately. I generally have really dry skin, and sometimes eczema, but quite a lot of sensitivity. As usual in the winter, my skin is looking really dull and I've got bad bad under-eye circles. I'm suspecting that my skin is dehydrated too because it drinks up everything i put on it and my makeup literally vanishes throughout the day. My concealer get's really patchy and the skin under my eyes looks dry, but every eye cream I've tried so far (I've been on the hunt for a while) has caused some kind of irritation, it's like a hopeless case. Even more confusingly I've been getting breakouts on my forehead, t-zone, infected whiteheads around my nose and today I woke up with a huge, really deep and painful cyst on my chin! My skincare routine is AM/PM: Vichy 3in1 cleansing milk, (caudalie beauty elixir) and the avene cold cream (only cream that keeps me from getting eczema). Oh and I just got the clarins camomile toner! Supplementing with iron every morning, vit D and vit C. So sorry for the über-long comment, it's all dragging me down a little! Thanks XXX

      1. Have you ever looked into Paula's Choice skincare? I have a whole lot of dry, flaky patches on my face as well as a bit of acne and a fair amount of blackheads/whiteheads & my skin is incredibly sensitive - almost anything irritates it! I've started using Paula's Choice after it was recommended by a dermatologist and I really love their stuff. You can buy $1 samples too. They are a great business too, extremely helpful and informative - their website has a whole lot of very easy to read information re skincare, all backed by science. I hope this helps :)

      2. have you tried Moogoo? (they are australian based company, but they do ship world wide :) ) i too suffer from everything you've described in yourself (such a pain eczema is :( ) and its helped so much. they do oil cleansers (dry,oily,normal) i use the one for dry skin. They also do a range of moisturises which are just amazing.

        Im unsure if my skin routine is "acceptable" but mine is:
        AM: Happy Skin Care cleansing balm, a swipe of witch hazel (may be too harsh for some), Sukin Hydrating Mist Toner, and Springfields Sensitive Moisturiser.

        PM: (if wearing makeup) Moogoo Oil Cleanser (dry skin), AUM Milk Cleanser, Witch Hazel, Sukins Hydrating Mist Toner, Sukin Eye Cream, andJojoba Oil mixed with Moogoos full Cream Moisturiser. Hope this Helps :)

    19. My aesthetician recently recommended an Obagi skin care regime...which I'm not sure if you have in the UK. If you do have it, can you please respond with your thoughts? This is a very popular brand among dermatologists and aestheticians and seems to have great results. I'm 32 and have dry skin, and very rarely have breakouts. I've definitely started to get fine lines though (deep in my forehead) so I was also recommended Retin A with a blender.
      Would love to know your recommendation as I am completely new to skin care.

    20. Is anyone able to tell me why lanolin isn't ideal for dry and dehydrated skin types? I have dry/dehydrated skin and am currently using a 'deep nourishing' moisturiser targeted at my skin type in which lanolin is one of the key ingredients. Should I be looking for something else?

    21. Hi Caroline, How bad are parabens in skincare? I've been looking for a new moisturiser and thought I'd look into Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre, but after having checked out the ingredients I'm a little bemused! It lists a ton of blahblahparabens and after noticing lots of "paraben free" products on the market, I wondered if Embryolisse was really as good for you as its cult following would have you believe?


      Would love to know your thoughts.

      1. No! It's mineral oil based.

      2. Lovely, thank you!! Won't be buying that then :)

      3. Hello, I used that and it seems to be the only thing able to relieve my skin (as I don't feel like smearing stuff again after 2 hours flat) ... I'm so euhm... not yet educated on the make-up / minerals part. What else might do the trick & why is this a not so good thing?Thanks a bunch, Anke

    22. dear Caroline is C13-14 Isoparaffin bad for our skin? what do you think about ingredients of StriVectin-SD™
      Intensive Concentrate? thank you!

    23. Elizabeth Maderias1 June 2013 at 07:58

      I've just recently discovered your blog...and wow its amazing!
      I love the cheat sheets especially :)
      Only issue is Its a bit hard to get my hands on a few products you've mentioned since i do live in California! :D
      but i've managed to research various similar products for my dehydrated skin! (i always thought i was just dry!)
      Thanks Caroline!! I look forward to reading all your blogs!

    24. Random question about a new brand! What do you think about Michael Todd products?

    25. Hi,

      Please can you give me some advice I am desperate. I always thought I had greasy skin I do on my t zone but over the last 5 years my cheeks have become bright red and very dry they are getting worse almost my whole cheeks are angry red with dry patches I have tried several products but nothing has helped. At the moment I wash my face with aqueous cream and just splash my cheeks with water and have cream off the doctor called Cetraben Emollient Cream he said I just have dry skin and to keep putting it on. My cheeks need to be greasy all the time to help it I only use it twice a day as I get huge spots and tiny white spots I do get a few spots but I think the cream is giving me more. I've been using for about a year but it hasn't helped. I had to beg of him to give me something. My skin is very tight and stings with flaky bits but it's the red I hate make up doesn't cover it very well and it's just getting worse. I'm eating healthily as I'm doing weight watchers but even if I am eating bad my skin never changes just gets worse. I don't drink or smoke. I'm 38 years old. It's so bad I don't go out unless I have to.

      Thank you very much. I'm not sure if this is in the right place. I would be so grateful for any help and advice you can give I know you are very busy.

      Wendy x.

    26. Hello Caroline,

      I have dehydrated skin, suggestions both high end and low end for a good hydrating moisturiser? I am currently using Kate Somerville's Goat Cream.

      Thank you!

    27. What moisturizer do you recommend for dry and dehydrated skin? please!

    28. Hello Caroline,

      I watched the video with the Pixiwoo girls and your advice was literally a revelation to me. I then realized, that until now I've done almost everything wrong.
      I think with my former routine I may have produced a dehydrated skin with blemishes under the surface of my skin that rarely come out around my mouth and on cheeks and forehead. Was using Effaclar foaming gel and Effaclar H moisturiser and from time to time a scrub to exfoliate until now.
      Now I know better.

      I was searching for a new cleansing milk or balm to change my routine and came across the La Roche Posay Toleriane Dermo Cleanser, which is the brand's only milk cleanser that doesn't contain Paraffinum Liquidum. Followed by the Clarins exfoliating toner and the La Roche Posay's Serozinc (if I can get hold of it here in Germany) and then by a moisturizer (until now not pretty sure which one to use); would that sound ok with you?

      Of course I will follow your advice regarding the flannell. ;)

      Thanks a million!

    29. Hey lovely Caroline,
      if you find time, could you please do a post and recommend products for dry and dehydrated skin?! That would be so helpful. My skin is both. I'm pregnant right now and my skin is acting up. I really would be so thankfull for some good advise. Thanks! Maja

    30. Hello Caroline,
      I just bought a rehydrating serum from 'La Roche-Posay' because I was told I had a dehydrated skin. The serum is ''Hydraphase Intense Serum'' and it says on the tube that it's ''rehydrating'' but when I first put it on I was surprised by the strong smell of alcohol that came from the product, and in the ingredient list it says 'alcohol denat'. But isn't alcohol ment to make dehydrated skin even worse ? Or is it tokay to use?
      Best regards,

    31. Hi Caroline,

      Is it possible to be both Dehydrated and Oily? I cant seem to get moisture to my skin and my foundation is just an oil slick by lunch.

      Love from Idaho,

    32. Hi Caroline I have dehydrated skin that can be slightly dry sometimes I get a lot of spots and breakouts that take a while to fade and I have a problem with blackheads on my face too, I have a love affair for your blog and have come to the conclusion that your opinion is the one opinion that matters and the voice I will listen when it comes to skin, so I am struggling to find products that work for me and was wondering if you could recommend some products that would work and what not to use on my skin, when it comes to cleansers, toners, exfoliants, serums , moisturiser etc. This would be such a amazing help to me and such a pro allege to communicate and get advice from someone that I see as such a idol. Thank you for the hard work you put in to all your content and just wanted say that the majority of us do appreciate all your hard work :)

    33. Good morning,
      I would like to ask one qustion please. It happenes to me all the time, that when I put my face cream on, it just doesn´t sink in and it makes this horrible pilling or shreds (forgive me my English-I´m trying to google the translation :). Even quality creams does that (Vichy, Isis, Cetaphil) and I just hate it.
      So if you could tell me, what I do wrong (I´ve tried to go along just with a tiny amount, it didn´t help)or if I just had bad luck with the cream choice? Thank you a lot, greetings from the Czech Republic! :)

    34. dear caroline,

      would you please recomend some face masks i can use, i am dehydrated.


      greetings from Greece!!!! and thanx for everything i ve learned fromyou

    35. Thank you for this! It was so helpful to me, as I've had dehydrated skin for quite some time. I'm pregnant and suffer from hypothyroidism, which I believe have contributed. As far as my skincare, I'm doing all I can. I'd love to hear any foundation/makeup recommendations for dehydrated skin. That's my area of struggle right now. I can't seem to find anything that helps with the dehydration, even the more moisturizing ones. Thanks!

    36. Just discovered your blog and this post thanks to the video on the Pixiwoo channel. Thank you so much for your advice!! I was told that my skin was dehydrated from a makeup artist at the Benefit counter in Brown Thomas here in Dublin and I thought she was just making up new jargon to confuse me *humbly bow my head to the superior knowledge*
      I'll make sure to use better products from now on!!

    37. I'm sure you've heard this plenty of times...but I'll just say it anyways: Having bad skin is on the fore front of my mind on a daily basis. There is hardly a moment that goes by during a bad skin day (week) that I'm not self conscious or worried that people are staring at blemishes or dry patches on my face. I've suffered from dry, sensitive skin for a while now, so I slowly added in a hydrating milk cleanser, balm cleansers for evening, oils (which is still a little bit odd for me), and serums with hyaluronic acid...My skin reacted so amazingly to this and was soft and plump and clear!

      After about a month I began to experience oily skin during the day.
      So I changed up my daytime moisturizer thinking that what I was using was too heavy...I switched from a First Aid Beauty Daily the Korres Pomegranate Balancing moisturizer. I've always had luck with Korres products!

      After using the moisturizer for only TWO face is burning, and red, and breaking out.
      I'm still using oils, and balms, and moisturizing serums...but I am just miserable. I just am not sure what to do to even out my skin. I would love your recommendation!

      Please help Caroline!

    38. I just learnt so many things about my skin in this one blog post. Thank you!

    39. This post might have just helped me turn a corner with my current skin care concern. I have always had pretty normal skin with no problems, I have used Aveda Hydrating range for some years. In January I exfoliated and used a new moisturiser rich in natural oils and essential oils and had a reaction, I don't know if it was an allergy or irritant. Since then my skin will not balance - immediately after it went extremely tight, dry, scaling as well as shiny looking and spots. I believe it is Dehydrated.

      I switched to a plain moisuriser with no fragrence, apricot kernal oil, shea butter, glycerin - it feels greasy and doesn't seem to be helping. The skin is highly sensitive now, it feels slightly inflammed and redness comes and goes. Am I using the wrong approach - emolient? I am wondering whether you can recommend a simple hydrating lotion or tell me what to look for. So confused about what my skin needs. Considering going back to the Aveda Hydrating lotion.

      Many thanks

    40. Hi Caroline,
      Please help me. I will keep it short and to the point. I'm 40. Got spots on cheeks. Messed with spots on cheeks. Left with scars. De-hydrated skin. Un-even skin tone. Spending a fortune. Getting worse not better. Any recommendations.

      Thank you

    41. Hi Caroline,first I wanted to say you are great I love your bluntness and honesty (rare nowadays) and would love to know your opinion on jan marini,I've heard a lot of great things about her products and I'm considering buying some I have very dry ( mayb dehydrated) skin and at the moment I'm prone to breakouts my makeup never lasts and goes patchy any advice would be great :)

    42. Caroline, I've just discovered your blog and now forsee many a happy hour reading and nodding my head like a car accessory. Also wishing it had been around when I was a teenager and in despair about my skin.

      Now I use a combination of oils, a bit of castor oil and avocado mixed together, massaged into skin and removed with a clean flannel soaked in warm water. My skin looks the best it ever has.

      Viola - I second your comment about Waitrose Baby Bottom Butter. It smells delicious too!

    43. Hi Caroline,

      This has been my favourite blog post! (I hope this is the way to enter your giveaway that ends 18th April!)

      I came across you via Pixiwoo, the video on youtube regarding skin care and the do's and dont's! I cannot praise you enough, seriously you have changed my whole perception on skin care because before I never really bothered. I just used make up wipes (Johnsons) and nivea cream. Over the past 4/5 years I was going through stress and I suffered from bad psoriasis and eczema on and around my eyes, my eyes would swell really badly and I was in a lot of pain, they would itch really badly and flake! It spread on my arms and legs too. Gradually over time it has healed however I have been too scared to try any skin care products now.

      I am almost 22 and I just don't know where to begin!?
      I was hoping you could give me some help...I came across Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm and Alpha H Liquid Gold...

      Would these 2 products be good for my skin and age? My skin is dry but I sort of oily nose? I mean I don't know! It may be combination.

      As mentioned previously, I had to use some steroid cream called hydrocortisone for the eczema etc and it's left lines and wrinkles under and around my eyes, I am really self conscious and I have lost confidence because of my age and these wrinkles I have. Any suggestions on what I could do?

      Would really appreciate some advice and sorry for the really long message!!

      Thank you

    44. Hi Caroline, i was wondering if you could help me? I have a really complex face when it comes to my skin. I suffer with Sebborheic dermatitis which is only on my forehead. Ive had this since i was 20 and im 30 now and its getting worse. Ive tried everything going prescribtion wise, been to spealisists and even a Chinese doctor. Also i have Rosea around my checks and nose and ache around my cheeks and chin. The last 6 months i have also developed a strange extrememly dry patch that make-up catches in. Just one random patch on my right cheek. So as you can see theres a lot going on. Any advice on any of these sections/conditions, would be very much appreciated. At the moment i use a Loreal cleaning oil at night to remove make up, a Olay "hydrating" night cream and a hyrdrating Garnier day mosituriser. I'm so overwhelmed with the options for all these problems. My doctor is a skin specialist GP and says im pretty unlucky as we've tried all the medicial options like antibiotics and steroid creams and has said shes never seen so many different conditions to tackle on one face. I have recently tried washing my forehead only (dermatitis) with dead sea salt and using Aveeno Eczema Therpay for a mosituriser afterwards (again only on my forehead) not the dry patch on my cheek.

      Thank you for taking the time to read this.



    45. i'm having suck a skin crisis D:
      My skin is normal, but gets a bit oily on the nose towards the end of the day, i have large pores and a BILLION blackheads that stay there no matter what (i am due for a facial in 20 days). I get the ocasional blemish and even after it's gone they leave red marks that stay on my skin forever!! I think i'm dehydrated because i get a bit flaky around my nose area too! I use the avene face wash for acne prone skin, and the tolerance cream (my face freaked out after i used some khiel's rare earth bla bla bla) i use the eradikate when i get zits and the glam glow white mask for unclogging pores! WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?


    46. i'm having suck a skin crisis D:
      My skin is normal, but gets a bit oily on the nose towards the end of the day, i have large pores and a BILLION blackheads that stay there no matter what (i am due for a facial in 20 days). I get the ocasional blemish and even after it's gone they leave red marks that stay on my skin forever!! I think i'm dehydrated because i get a bit flaky around my nose area too! I use the avene face wash for acne prone skin, and the tolerance cream (my face freaked out after i used some khiel's rare earth bla bla bla) i use the eradikate when i get zits and the glam glow white mask for unclogging pores! WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?

    47. Hi,
      I have sensitive skin and my skin is really dry and I cant find any products that suit my skin I also have eczema but that isn't much of a problem now. My skin is also very irritated and itchy.

      What products should I use?

      What products shouldn't I use?

      What should I stay away from?

      *also have a nut allergy*

    48. From your list i would say i have dehydrated skin - both tight and absorbs moisturisers quickly. I currently use Elemis Tri-enzyme resurface, followed by trilogy serum and age proof night cream. I was using the Trilogy age proof SPF15 day cream, however it always felt "sticky" and would stick/clag my makeup brush. So now i use the night cream in the a.m. & p.m. I use NUDE mineral powder as foundation. I have always been blessed with beautiful, clear, smooth skin (sorry not trying to bragg). I'm age 43yrs. What would be a better combination?

    49. Morning!
      I have very sensitive skin. I have been prescribed Epiduo for mild acne on the jaw line which I have been using for a month, however I have now stopped as its drying out my skin. My jaw line and lower cheeks are now very dry, tight and itchy but I have an oily t-zone. I also brought the clinique 3 step kit over the weekend, ouch!!!! This burnt my skin! I found the blog after this purchase. What's the best cleanser and moisturiser for super sensitive, dry, red acne skin.

    50. I have stress "wrinkles" on my forehead. I'm only about 25 years old, and they aren't that bad, but they still bugged me. Over the past few weeks, I have been using the Somaluxe Moisturizer (as recommended by my Derm), and I saw the lines on my forehead slowly start to fade away, and it also did wonders on my face. I use the Somaluxe Moisturizer once a day.

    51. After years battling with sore, red skin and I could probably get a degree in types of moisturisers I have used. Tetracycline was given by the doctor but that wasn't right either. Anyhow the answer.... I figured out I had a lactose/ milk intolerance. I ate a bowl of soup with milk in it (chicken and mushroom) the other day and today my face is red with eczema. It's hard to eliminate it all and recently I think hydrolysed soya proteins aren't working for me too but for those of you like me that have spent 30 years swapping skin products strip your food back. Remove processed foods. Eat veg, fruit, rice and plain meats for a week and you will see a difference. Obviously I have to say 'always seek medical advice before making changes to your diet' blah blah.....

    52. Hi Caroline, first of all, thank you for you blog! I've only recently become a reader and I ahve to say, your advice has been really useful! I have a few issues with my skin and would love your feedback!
      I am 32 years old and have always had combination / oily skin (since my teens)... Overall, my skin is generally clear, although I do get a few blackheads on my chin and have relatively large pores.
      Throughout the day my make-up becomes patchy, especially around the cheeks and even though my skin is oily, half-way through the day it looks quite dull and my make-up seems to have disappeared!
      I discovered P50 about a couple of months ago, which really helped to balance my skin tone. I have also recently started using REN's Young & Beautiful serum (the one that comes in a pump) before my moisturizer (both during my day and night time routines) to help combat those first signs of ageing and some expressional lines that seem to be getting more visible.
      The past couple of weeks (since I started reading your blog) I've also started double cleansing during my night-time routine (first with Eve Lom's cleanser, followed by Sunday Riley's ceramic slip cleanser, using a flannel both times). I then follow with P50, REN Y&B and then moisurizer (I’ve been using Lancome’s Genifique but just ordered Tata Harper’s Rebuilding Moiturizer which I’m waiting to try out!)
      This has all been working quite well, however the past couple of days, my skin has been feeling quite dry. I get that tight feeling all over my face and feel I need to re-apply moisturizer. Also, when I apply my moisturizer over the serum, it becomes ‘blotchy’ and gathers at the bottom of my chin and is really difficult to absorb... I guess I must be doing something wrong!! Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    53. Hello Caroline! I don't have Twitter so I though I'd try here. I am 18 years old with dry skin that can get flakey patches, dehydration and regular acne. Most of my acne are small spots with a white head/puss. No matter what I do I still continue to wake up with and go to bed with spots. I'd like to try a SR product but can only get one for now.... Good Genes or Artemis?

    54. Gosh, so interesting and extremely helpful!

    55. I'm so confused. I thought silicones such as Dimethicone are good for dehydrated skin ???

    56. I'm so confused. I thought silicones such as Dimethicone we're good for dehydrated skin ?

    57. Could you give some product recommendations for rehydrating dehydrated skin? It seems like a lot of people are asking about it and it would be really helpful! Any specific product recs?

    58. Dermanov cream really works!
      I had problems with dry skin on the face, of course, like any woman I have used many different creams, some funds were better some worse. But one day I saw this cream. It can be ordered sovreshnenno free, of course I ordered, but the result did not believe - I was wrong it really is a miracle cream. I encourage you, the company still offers a free trial bottle. You can order at this link

    59. I have a problem with my skin on my legs arms and back of neck. It started 4 months ago. At times the skin hurts. Feels tight and dry.
      The aveeno lotion does not work like it use to but it is the only thing that gives me some comfort. I have to apply it aprox 10 times a day.

      I have tried many other lotions and they go into the skin quickly and provide nothing to me. Tried many oils also.

      When I wash skin is very tight and dry.

      Feeling the skin is damaged and dehydrated.

      Not sure how to fix.


    60. So lanolin will not help my parched lips? Like in Elizabeth arden 8 hrs cream

    61. I'm on day one of strivectin sd. I have very dry skin and spotted a few wrinkles. So far I'm loving this creme!!! It exfoliated my skin and softened it up quite a bit. Although my face is a lil red today. I think the redness will go away as my skin gets used to the product. I'm feeling like strivectin sd is my miracle creme ... Time will tell ...

    62. Hi Caroline, I was wondering if you could help.
      I suffer badly from acne rosacea, with my skin being spotty with swollen red patches most of the time unless I live on doxycycline. My skin often cracks and is painful. I'm unsure if this means I have dry skin? I'm fairly sure its not oily, but i spend my life trying and searching fir the right cleansing products and something that is right fir my skin type and will help calm the Rosacea. I feel helpless and clueless, and its upsetting as it's difficult to hide. Any pointers if possible would be fabulous. Thanks so much in advance x

    63. I live for your skincare tips.

    64. I take various medications (high blood pressure X 2 and metformin for insulin resistance) and they cause such dry, itchy skin. Do you have any recommendations for supplements or topical that would help me to not feel like an itchy freak? X

    65. Hi dear,
      I have been encountering models with the driest, flakiest most irritated skin lately.
      Mostly it gets fixed with dr hauschka rose day cream or Dior Hydra mask for dry skin, Irritated skin I use cicaplast balm, redness I use Avene Anti-rouge fort...but here's the thing...
      What to do to irritated and flaky skin caused by allergy?
      I do not dare to use a scrub cause I do not want to make a worse situation, and even though Cicaplast helps to calm down the area, it is skin flaky and it shows on pictures (Im a makeup artist, forgot to say).
      I have been looking for everything and anything to help this problem, I basically look for a fast fix as they are being photographed for a magazine and stuff.
      Any tips?

      Best wishes from Sweden!

      1. I don't think there are 'fast fixes'. There are quick plastering over troubles (makeup etc). Fixing requires gettign to the root of the trouble. I'm thinking models on a starvation diet, probably not getting their good omega three oils? You're in Sweden so are meant to have gorgeous skinned ladies.. this is what I've been told. I'm 47 next week and my routine is less than 60 seconds a dryness, issues anymore, just natural goodies I make myself. It's been an eye opener reading some of the comments.. my skin used to be acneic and painful.. worst five years of my life... Can you find some good local Sweidhs skincare makers to talk to? Artisan makers are normally very helpful and educated on ways to improve skin.... best wishes from Wendy (the Glow lady) in Devon

    66. Hi, I'm 13, I have dry skin. My skin is having a lot of problems now. The first thing I've noticed, which was around March, was the amount of acne i had on my face. When I first started puberty I only had 5 or 6 max, since March I've been getting more and more as time went on. I tried using foundation but it looked blotchy and cakey, not throughout the day, but as soon as i apply it. As summer holidays came, my face became a total disaster. I was getting even more breakouts, and it was all over my face. Then around 2 weeks ago my face suddenly became very dry, it was rough and hurts when i made facial expressions, especially around my mouth area, which i have eczema. But at the same time, my face was super oily, and it's not only on my T-zone, but on my entire face. Now when i use foundation, it doesn't look blotchy anymore, but maybe a little bit around my mouth.

      Does skin overproduce oil when skin is too dry, or does it mean i have dehydrated skin? Where is the oil coming from? How can I treat it without aggravating my acne? I'm super depressed and i avoid looking at mirrors, i'm going on vacations in 3 days and i really want my skin to become better before school starts..

    67. I am ashamed to be guilty of making soo many skincare mistakes!! And there's me thinking I've got my skincare routine down

    68. I had hyperpigmentation AND blotchy skin - and really feel the Somaluxe Moisturizer is starting to make a difference. I am a 37 year old woman and have been very unhappy with my skin for quite awhile now. I have continued with daily use of the Somaluxe Moisturizer and my skin is looking so much brighter and fresher, I've even had afew compliments telling me I look healthier and fresh. My hyperpigmentation has started to break up a little bit, giving me little dotted about patches of normal skin tone, so I'm hoping afew more weeks down the line that it will of more or less cleared up. Fingers crossed.

    69. i already use this product .its a very effective and fresh

      products for sensitive skin

    70. I absolutely love you. For 36 years I have thought & used DRY skin products. I only recently got an educated skin consult & was told I have Normal Dehydrated skin. I am dead set on buying & trying Emma Hardie Cleansing balm but simply dont know what cleanser is right for me. Can you please recommend a fabulous day & night cleanser for my normal dehydrated skin?


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