While it’s important to stay hydrated in order to maintain overall good health, we look for evidence to suggest that drinking more water is especially good for your skin. It's a scientific fact that the outermost layer of our skin, the epidermis, will feel rough and lose its stretchiness if it doesn’t contain enough water.
So if you’re dehydrated, drinking enough water to bring your body back to healthy levels of hydration should improve the look and condition of your skin. But if you’re not dehydrated in the first place, can drinking more water improve your skin further? Will it prevent wrinkles?
We should be drinking around 1.5 litres of water, or six to eight glasses a day. This helps to ensure we maintain our body’s natural water balance and that we replace all the fluid we normally lose throughout the day. If we sweat more, in hot weather or during exercise, then we will need to replace more lost water. Becoming dehydrated will have many negative effects on our bodies, and a lack of elasticity in our skin is just one of them. So, as long as we’re otherwise healthy, drinking the recommended amount of water every day will help keep our skin healthy.
There’s little scientific evidence to prove that drinking more water than already recommended will have an anti-aging effect on our skin and prevent wrinkles. So, is water good for our skin? Yes. It’s important to keep our bodies, and therefore our skin, healthily hydrated in order for us to stay in tip-top condition.
Here are seven ways to stop your skin getting dehydrated and keep it looking and feeling good:
1) Drink six to eight glasses of water a day - our recommended fluid intake to replace normal water loss. Drink more in hot weather or when exercising.
2) Avoid alcohol and caffeine - they are diuretics. They can make you pee more often, hence you lose more water than normal and therefore need to drink more water to stay hydrated.
3) Cut down on sugar - it can dehydrate you if it gets to high levels in your blood
4) Reduce the heat while washing - hot, hot, hot water absorbs the moisture from your skin
5) Exfoliate while washing - this removes dead skin, allows it to regenerate better and lets moisturising cream penetrate more easily. But don’t overdo it, exfoliating too much will leave your skin feeling dry and irritated.
6) Moisturise after washing - this helps to stop your skin drying out.
7) Hydrate your air - dry air sucks the moisture out of your skin. A decent digital room thermometer will also have a hygrometer which will tell you the humidity of your home - 30% to 50% is ideal. If needed, a room humidifier will add water back into the air and help to keep your skin hydrated.
Remember, if you’re feeling thirsty - this is a sign that you are already mildly dehydrated. The best way to tell if your body’s natural water balance is on form is to check the colour of your urine. Pale yellow or clear urine tells you that you’re doing fine, anything darker means your body, and therefore your skin, needs more fluid. Simple!
How much water do you drink daily to feel good and hydrated? Do you need that extra push? What tips do you have? What type of water do you drink?