You got through dry January like a boss and while you’re enjoying your well deserved glass of wine, here’s the next thing to take on — your skin. You seem to constantly be slathering moisturiser but your skin still feels drier than the Sahara. Well, we tell you how to figure it out like a pro.

Dry vs Dehydrated Skin

Do you really have dry skin or is it dehydrated? There is a difference between the two: dryness refers to a skin type, and dehydration refers to a skin condition.

Dry skin doesn’t have enough oil because it produces less sebum than normal skin, and the lack of sebum means the skin doesn’t have the lipids it needs to retain moisture and to build a strong barrier to protect against external aggressors. Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, does not have enough water. Dehydrated skin is caused by a lot of factors, some of which include caffeine consumption, diet, and environment.

How can you know?

Pinch your cheek. If it’s wrinkling under gentle pressure, it means your skin is desperate for water and your skin is dehydrated. Plus, it will feel tight, look dull in the mirror, and you may notice more exaggerated wrinkles.

Dry skin on the other hand, is uncomfortable, flaky, and itchy, particularly near the eyebrows, around the mouth and the corners of the nose.

Here’s what you can do

There are three hall-of-famers you can turn to now to help amp up the hydration in your skin.

#1: Hyaluronic Acid

You’re not unfamiliar with this natural sugar found in skin which acts as a humectant to draw water in. There’s more than it — hydrolysed hyaluronic acid and sodium hyaluronic acid, for example, and when it comes to hyaluronic acid, more is more. Try The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 if you’re on the hunt for a serum.

#2: Ceramides

Think of them as your new besties. Like glue holding skin cells together and preventing the loss of moisture, you add fatty acids and cholesterol to the mix and you’ve got a recipe to help repair skin’s barrier. Product recommendations here.

#3: B-complex vitamins

B vitamins are basically badasses because they pretty much do it all. They have the ability to soothe irritated skin, help promote collagen production, and brighten uneven complexion and dark spots. Our favourite is Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel that soaks into your skin and gives you that glow you’re after.