Are you over-moisturising?

Article Nov 13, 2012

We reveal just how much product you really need...

When your skin is dry and dehydrated, it’s tempting to slather on a thick layer of cream. But you could be harming your skin and wasting your money. ‘On average, your skin can only absorb up to 60 per cent of what you use on it,’ says Hilery Dorrian, co-founder of Barefoot Botanicals. The excess is likely to sit on your skin, clog up your pores, affect your skin’s functions and cause breakouts.

Face

Dehydrated skin will obviously absorb more moisture,’ says Dorrian. ‘Oily skin will still absorb product, but slightly less as the skin is not as thirsty.’ A heavy moisturiser can lead to blockages and cause your skin to over-produce oil. Rub a pea-sized amount of cream into your palms to warm it up before applying. This helps it spread and absorb easily into your skin. Exfoliation rids your skin of excess oils and dead skin cell buildup so that more moisture can be absorbed. Applying moisturiser to damp skin will make it go further and maximise absorption. The herbfarmacy Divine Light Organic Face Cream (£13.80, 50g; herbfarmacy.co.uk) is a light moisturiser that’s perfect for oily skin.

Eyes

The skin around your eyes is thinner than the rest of your face, and has fewer oil glands, so will absorb more moisture that’s applied to it. ‘Use a grain of rice size amount of eye cream, and apply gently, using your ring finger in a dabbing motion,’ says Dorrian. It’s important not to rub or tug the delicate skin around your eyes as this can contribute to premature ageing. Try the Yes To Blueberries Intensive Firming Eye Repair Cream (£19.99, 15ml; Victoriahealth.com) to improve skin elasticity.

Body

Hop out of the bath and apply your body moisturiser within three minutes of towel drying to ensure maximum hydration. ‘Aim to leave no residue behind – rub in every last bit,’ says Dorrian. ‘Start with a 50p-size amount per limb and apply more as you need to.’ For a smooth finish, apply rich body butter to your legs after shaving and exfoliating. We love the Origins Ginger Souffle Whipped Body Cream (£22, 200ml; origins.co.uk).

Lips

Are you addicted to lip balm? Over-application prevents the skin on your lips from producing its own oils. ‘Too much greasy product can also lead to small spots appearing around the lip area,’ warns Dorrian. ‘If you’re using a good quality, natural balm, a smaller than pea size amount is enough,’ she says. Opt for an organic salve such as the EOS Lip Balm (£4.75; naturallyfabulous.co.uk) with shea butter and vitamin E and free from nasties.

Hair

‘It depends on how much hair you have, but a blob of shampoo the size of a 10p piece should be sufficient,’ says Dorrian. ‘Too much conditioner, on your roots can lead to greasy and limp hair so only apply to your dry ends.’
If your roots are heavy with product, you’ll struggle to style your hair and your blow dry won’t last. Try Liz Earle’s lightweight Botanical Shine Conditioner (£8, 200ml; uk.lizearle.com).

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