Our humid climate in sunny Singapore means that there is a lot of moisture in the air around us. The retained moisture in our skin results in open and enlarged pores which are more susceptible to environmental pollutants, allergens, dirt, and oil. All these can manifest in acne breakouts, eczema, allergic reactions and resulting unsightly blemishes. However even though it is tempting to skip the moisturiser, it is important that you should moisturise, no matter what your skin type is.
Should all skin types use moisturiser?
A common skin issue, that many of my patients have is 内油外干. They describe their skin as being oily on the inside, and dry on the outside. What frustrates them is that they’re getting breakouts, and aren’t exactly sure how to treat this combination. This is a sign that the skin is dehydrated. Other than making sure that we drink sufficient water daily, and that our skincare products aren’t too harsh or drying, we should ensure that we choose a moisturiser that is suitable for our skin type.
Why do I need to moisturise?
Without proper and adequate hydration, our skin will dry out and in turn produce more sebum to compensate for the dryness. This can lead to increased skin irritation and acne breakouts which increases the potential of acne scarring.
There are a few different types of moisturisers- humectants, emollients, and occlusives.
Humectants draw water into the top layer of the skin, such as hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and aloe vera, while emollients help to seal in water into fine lines within the skin to provide a smooth, and soft complexion. Examples would be plant-based oils such as rosehip, grape seed, coconut oils, ceramides, squalene, and dimethicone. Occlusives provide a thicker, protective barrier to prevent water loss, such as mineral oils, lanolin, beeswax, and cocoa butter.
Choosing a moisturiser for acne- prone skin
For oily or acne prone skin, one should look for non-comedogenic moisturizers, meaning that they won’t clog pores. One should avoid occlusives, in areas that are prone to acne.
Lightweight gels, and serums are more beneficial, and emphasis should be placed on moisturisers that contain glycerin, hyaluronic acid, aloe vera and squalane, as these will not clog the pores.
By applying a few drops of a lightweight, water-based serum such as a hyaluronic acid serum underneath a moisturizer, you’ll get the hydration that you need, to alleviate that feeling of tightness.
Acne-prone skin will benefit greatly from Radium’s Serenity Skin Revival Serum. It is a relatively lightweight serum, that gets absorbed easily, and quickly into the skin, without leaving behind an oily or greasy residue. It has a good blend of humectants, such as glycerin, and emollients like rosehip oil, and cranberry seed oil for moisturisation. Because it is infused with sea kelp, and Centella Asiatica, it helps to soften and hydrate dry skin, as well as to retain and lock in moisture to strengthen the skin barrier. It also contains deep sea minerals, that purges toxins from deep within the skin, so as to reduce acne breakouts.
In studies, most patients see reduced acne between 1 to 2 months after beginning to use an acne friendly moisturizer. Choosing the right moisturiser for your skin type can prevent your skin from becoming dry and irritated, hence reducing the chance of acne breakouts.