Many famous people, like Jennifer Aniston, Gabrielle Union, and Beyoncé, respond that drinking enough water is the key to having perfect skin. And even while hydration has been proven to be an essential component of sustaining general health, you might be wondering if you can actually water your way to good skin.
The Potential Relationship Between Water Intake and Better Skin
Although you’ve definitely heard that drinking water may make your skin shine and seem clear, there isn’t much solid scientific data to support this claim. However, single, limited research did point to a connection between hydration and skin health. Researchers discovered that increasing water intake had a good impact on skin appearance and helped maintain skin hydration levels in people with low daily water consumption, or people who were already dehydrated.
The research did point out that drinking above a healthy level of hydration could not have any additional effects if you’re already well-hydrated. “Excessive hydration is unlikely to benefit the skin,” asserts Kathleen C. Suozzi, MD, Yale Medicine’s head of aesthetic dermatology and an associate professor at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut. She says that the capillary blood flow in the skin serves as the mechanism by which the skin is “hydrated” from the inside out; but, if there isn’t enough water available, as may occur if you’re dehydrated, your skin may effectively dry out.
However, doctors agree that including water in your regimen for healthy skin makes sense, including Dr. Suozzi.
According to Suozzi, “Skin hydration is a reflection of total-body hydration.” “If a person is dehydrated, less water is being transferred from the circulation to the skin.”
A dermatologist in New York City named Debra Jaliman, MD, says that drinking adequate water helps enhance blood flow in the body and skin. She points out that water makes up the majority of the body’s cells and tissues. The author of the book Skin Rules: Trade Secrets from a Top New York Dermatologist and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Dr. Jaliman, adds, “It’s important to stay hydrated.” “When you experience thirst, your body is requesting water. Make sure you obtain enough water throughout the day to prevent dehydration in your body.
For healthy skin, how much water should you consume?
A gallon of water each day, according to Beyoncé and Union, prevents skin dryness. Additionally, Suozzi notes that you may have seen those enormous water bottles on social media that appear to encourage “super hydration.” But it probably isn’t essential to drink this much water.
Suozzi cites the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s recommendations for appropriate fluid consumption, which state that 9 cups of water for women and 13 cups of water for men respectively. However, “if a person has a lot of transepidermal water loss from sweat or heat, then this requirement increases,” she notes. (Water lost via the skin is referred to as transepidermal water loss.)
The body’s level of hydration can also be impacted by other dietary components, such as coffee or meals high in water. However, generally speaking, you should aim for the aforementioned net intake, plus or minus a few of glasses.
One case report describes the uncommon impact of water intoxication, which can happen when you drink too much water. According to Medline Plus, hyponatremia results from the body’s salts and electrolytes becoming excessively diluted when there is too much water present. The kidneys, the body’s primary organ of filtration, may get overworked by an excessive fluid intake, according to Suozzi.
Tips from the Diet and Lifestyle for Hydrating Skin
Follow these tactics recommended by experts to increase your body’s levels of moisture, which will benefit your skin.
Including items high in water on your plate can aid in achieving your hydration objectives. (Unsure about where to begin? According to the Cleveland Clinic, try cucumbers, celery, zucchini, watermelon, strawberries, and cauliflower.)
Cut back on alcohol and sweets
“Alcohol dehydrates your body and skin,” claims Jaliman. The skin may appear more wrinkly and dry as a result. She says that many alcoholic mixed drinks also include a lot of sugar, which will “wreak havoc” on your complexion. She warns that excessive consumption of sugary treats can age the skin by stiffening collagen through a process known as glycation. If you are prone to inflammatory skin problems like psoriasis, eating too much sugar might cause inflammation. Rosacea, eczema, and other skin disorders may get worse as a result.
Suozzi says that when topical substances known as humectants are put to the skin, they can be absorbed and drawn in water. A frequent element in skin care products, hyaluronic acid, is a kind of humectant. According to Suozzi, emollients like lotions and ointments aid in moisture retention by preventing fluid loss from the skin’s protective outer layer.
The procedure “gets rid of dead skin and allows skin-care products to penetrate more efficiently,” according to Jaliman, which may seem paradoxical. Many people assume it can make their skin overly dry, but that only happens when someone exfoliates their skin excessively, which might irritate it. Red, itchy skin following exfoliation may be an indication of over-exfoliation, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Determine the best exfoliation method and schedule for your skin in consultation with your dermatologist.
Insert a serum
Utilizing a quality serum after exfoliation will aid in the hydration process. Jaliman advises trying Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair, a “great serum” with retinol, hyaluronic acid, and glycerin as its three main components. “The hyaluronic acid plumps the skin,” she says. It has anti-aging qualities and is incredibly moisturizing. It is an organic humectant. Skin is well moisturized by glycerin. A fantastic serum for mature skin is this one.
Drink Water and Air
According to Jaliman, a humidifier successfully increases air moisture, therefore “adding a humidifier to your home is also a great idea to add more hydration to the skin.” Because the dry air draws moisture from your skin, she continues, “As the air gets drier and cooler, your skin will need more moisture.” Your skin will benefit whenever dry air is added to it, and for some people, it may also aid with other problems like allergies.
Improve Your Showering Process
Dermatology Associates of Plymouth Meeting in Pennsylvania’s Nazanin Saedi, MD, a laser and cosmetic surgery expert, advises against taking hot showers or washing your face with hot water since the heat “absorbs the moisture from your skin.” Water that is lukewarm is best for the skin.
The timing of product application can also affect how hydrated your skin is. Dr. Saedi advises moisturizing immediately after getting out of the shower. Apply a thick coating to improve absorption after getting out of the shower and gently pat skin dry with your towel, she suggests.
One last thought on hydration and skin
More water may be good for your skin if you aren’t keeping up with the recommended hydration levels. The health or look of your skin won’t likely be improved by drinking more water if you are currently hydrated and consuming the required quantity of water each day.
However, adding moisture to your skin-care routine by exfoliating first and using a serum with potent chemicals right away might benefit your skin. By avoiding contact with hot water, increasing your consumption of foods high in water, and even utilizing a humidifier in your home, you can also help your skin stay hydrated.
And last, if you have any further queries, think about consulting a dermatologist to receive tailored advice depending on the requirements of your skin.