Everything You Need to Know to Combat Dry & Dehydrated Skin

During Winter it’s not only our immune system that suffers thanks to cold temperatures. Blasting air-conditioning, hot showers and cold wind that come hand in hand with the chilly season all wreak havoc on our complexions too. Couple the aforementioned with a drop in air humidity and you’ve got a recipe for unhappy, dehydrated skin. Fortunately, there’s plenty you can do to make dehydrated skin a thing of the past. To find out exactly how to do that and to clear up the confusion about dehydrated and dry skin, we spoke with Sothys National Technical Trainer and skincare expert, Vanessa Feehan-Meldrum.

We often hear people saying they have dry skin but what is the difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin?

In very simple terms, dry skin is lacking lipids, or our skin’s natural oils, whereas dehydrated skin is lacking water.

How can you tell the difference?

Dry skin has certain characteristics – small pores, no visible oil flow on the skin, skin can feel rough and uneven. These skins may feel they need more moisturiser added after their first application. Dehydrated skin has a crepe-like look to it – when you smile you may see fine lines around your eyes that look like crepe paper – this type of skin often feels tight.

Many of us suffer from dehydrated skin over the winter months. Why is this?

In winter we tend to increase all the heating in our homes, workplace and the car. We have hotter showers and tend to drink less water. Our skin is the last organ to receive water and with all these components contribute to the dehydration of our skin. That dehydrated feeling starts to creep in very quickly.

What steps can we take to treat dehydrated skin in winter?

You may want to look at changing your cleanser – maybe move to cleansing milk rather than a wash – try Sothys Comfort Cleansing Milk. Add in a hydrating serum, such as Sothys Intensive Hydrating Serum,  before your moisturiser and look to use a night cream that will give the skin an extra boost overnight. My favourite thing to do to beat dehydration is to implement a hydrating mask over the winter months.

How does lifestyle play a role in whether our skin is dehydrated or not?

Lifestyle plays a huge role in our skin; your environment can impact on skin in ways we wouldn’t have thought of. We need to remember that exercise, those extra coffees to keep you warm, windy days and extra heating are depleting our skins natural hydration levels.

What role does exfoliation play in helping dehydrated skin? And dry skin?

Exfoliation is important to the hydration of the skin – we need to remove dead skin cells to help with the penetration of products. As for dry skin, cell turnover can be slow and generally needs a helping hand but be careful not to exfoliate every day – this can contribute to dehydration in the skin by stripping the all-important layer of oil that helps retain and lock in the skin’s natural moisture. If we over exfoliate, we remove this oil barrier and increase the skin’s dehydration as water can escape freely from our skin.

I think I have a dry skin type. What should my beauty routine look like?

Having dry skin is a process of getting it to be healthy dry skin. You want your skin to feel comfortable, nourished and hydrated. I would recommend that your routine be a cleanser (not a wash or gel as this can dry the skin out), a moisturising toner, a hydrating serum and a skincare oil at night – try Sothys Essential Lipid Elixir.  Look to use a moisturiser that supports dry skin specifically and look to introduce a night cream and weekly mask. These small actions do really help your dry skin to be a skin that has more balance and health.

How important is the right moisturiser when it comes to caring for naturally dry skin?

The right moisturizers are critical – dry skin does need more help as it can suffer badly through winter months. We want to be using a moisturiser that helps to contribute to the skins own natural oils such as Avocado, Macadamia and Omegas 3,6,9.

These oils do not block the skin but help to support a specific layer in the skin. They provide nourishment but also protection. Dry skin can become sensitised if it has lost its protective layers.

Are there any skincare ingredients that you tend to recommend for dry skin?

Try skincare that has been formulated with the following: Omegas 3,6,9; Shea Oil; Jojoba Oil; Hyaluronic Acid; Macadamia Oil; Avocado Oil.

To find out more and shop the Sothys skincare collection click here.  

10 things you didn’t know about La Mer

We all know La Mer’s skincare is iconic, but do you know what actually makes La Mer moisturisers so special and desirable?

Name a beauty product that’s as well-known, revered and unique as Crème de la Mer​.

It’s virtually impossible! The weighty glass tub of luxuriously thick, velvety cream is a household name – not because every household has one, but because it has established a reputation as the ultimate care for skin. 

But the iconic cream and the four other equally-impressive moisturisers in La Mer’s stable, including glow-boosting new-gen The Moisturising Soft Cream, have a lesser-known backstory and a number of surprising details about the careful and considered way each is formulated, that fills the blanks about why it is considered the pinnacle of skincare.

1. It was purpose designed for skin repair 

To deliver such beautiful results (the moisturisers are known for delivering a soft, plump and glowing complexion) each product contains La Mer’s transformative hero ingredient. 

Now known as ‘Miracle Broth’, it’s a unique fermented sea kelp extract that was originally developed by aerospace physicist Dr. Max Huber in the 1950s, after he sustained a burn in a lab experiment. 

Huber subsequently experimented over a number of years combining extracts of the nutrient-rich and abundant kelp found in the ocean near his Californian home, with other natural and botanical ingredients, fermenting them into a concentrated formula. Reportedly trying around 6000 experiments over 12 years, he finally landed on a version that significantly improved the look of his skin. 

2. Each batch is serenaded

Part of that experimentation involved looking into more unique ways to make the resulting skin cream more effective. Dr Huber used his science and physics background to deduce that exposing the Miracle Broth formula to light and sound energy – now known as sonochemistry – improved its results. He famously played the formulas sound recordings while the fermentation process was taking place, over three to four months. The process is said to be more active when exposed to the sound waves. 

3. Each batch maintains a seamless link to the original

La Mer remains faithful to that extensive and detailed formula and process today as the fermentation transforms ingredients into micronutrients that the skin can more readily recognise and receive. Each time a batch is created, it is also infused with drops from the one that came before it, creating a timeless link to that original batch.

4. It contains hand-harvested algae

In 2021 Miracle Broth is still a sea-inspired powerhouse now created using kelp sourced off the coast of Vancouver. Macrocystis pyrifera, or Giant Sea Kelp, is one of the fastest growing plants in the world that has peak growth rates of 2ft a day, hence Dr Huber’s interest in its regeneration abilities. The kelp is now carefully hand harvested to protect its sustainability, ensuring the health and regeneration of the kelp is protected for generations to come. 

5. It’s also powered with skin-boosting ‘Lime Tea’ antioxidants

It’s not only Miracle Broth that makes La Mer skincare so effective. Dr Huber was also responsible for the genesis of another key ingredient in the moisturisers. Now called Lime Tea, Dr Huber created an extraction from the peel of the citrus fruit after realising the protective potential of the powerful antioxidants found within, ahead of his time. 

Antioxidants are now well known to help skin defend itself against daily stressors and encourage healthy renewal. Legend says Dr Huber’s original recipe was a solution of lime rinds and 100-proof vodka, although alcohol is no longer used. It now involves a one-month slow-extraction process.

6. Each jar is hand-filled

Each of the brand’s weighty signature opal glass jars is hand-filled in a temperature-controlled room within eight hours of each formula’s completion to ensure a fresh, potent and effective product. 

7. There’s a formula for every occasion, season or destination

Each La Mer moisturiser contains the precious ingredients mentioned above, along with other advanced hydration-boosting elements that encourage skin’s natural renewal, soothe irritation, protect from environmental pollution and maintain a balance that minimises the effects of ageing.

Given the way we care for skin each day can be dependent on its evolving condition thanks to variables like lifestyle, location, hormones and habits, La Mer now has five moisturiser options to suit those needs and texture preferences. 

Not to be missed, the newest, The Moisturizing Soft Cream, has a lightweight and modern texture that quickly delivers on glow! It works using Miracle Broth-infused moisturising spheres that help renew skin’s barrier – essential in the colder months – for a naturally vibrant radiance.

The original, Crème de la Mer is a decadently rich cream that’s perfect for complexion-taxing environments like travel or indoor heating and brings very dry skin back to life.

The Moisturizing Cool Gel Cream has a fresh cooling gel feel that quickly freshens and soothes skin that’s oilier or feeling the heat and is great for hot, humid environments or after working out or exercise.

When you want to control shine or keep your makeup in place The Moisturizing Matte Lotion gives skin a smooth, healthy-looking matte finish and it is great for guys too.

Sheer and light, The Moisturizing Soft Lotion absorbs quickly so it is perfect under makeup and keeps skin nourished and hydrated all day. Plus, the pump format is easy to carry with you.

8. It’s a celebrity favourite

Being constantly in the public eye can be a challenge for many A-list celebrities and as such they seek out the top skincare and aesthetic treatments available. Often on their ‘must-have’ lists? La Mer moisturisers. Beyonce, Blake Lively, Kim Kardashian, Kate Hudson and plenty more are said to be fans.

9. La Mer continues to honour its connection to the sea

Referring to the sea as its muse, La Mer as a brand holds deep respect for our oceans and the part they play in sustaining our existence, as well as nurturing the kelp extract in its formulas. As such, it has retained a long-held commitment to marine conservation efforts, having donated US$5.7 million over 15 years and helped support the protection of 16 million miles of unique marine habitats across the globe.

In 2017 it formalised this commitment with the establishment of the La Mer Blue Heart Oceans Fund and has since backed conservation efforts in The Azores, Grenada, the East China sea and the planting of 30,000 mangroves in the Caribbean.

The fund also works with ambassadors including environmentalist, explorer, and filmmaker, Philippe Cousteau, marine biologist and policy expert Dr Ayana Johnson and wildlife photojournalist Thomas Peschak to help spread information around the current challenges and investigate ideas that will have a positive impact.

Each year La Mer also releases a special ‘Blue Heart’ edition of Crème de la Mer​ to raise awareness for the significant conservation initiative.

10. An ongoing commitment to sustainability

As part of a wider commitment to environmental sustainability La Mer has committed to ensuring over 75% of its packaging will be recycled, recyclable, reusable, refillable or recoverable by 2025.

To learn more about La Mer’s iconic skincare visit

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