It seems that almost every single week, beauty bloggers and skincare brands alike are promoting the latest craze in the industry; each one promising to be the gateway to flawless skin. But one complexion hack that is getting a lot of attention lately is both far from new and as pure and simple as it gets: good old H2O! It has long been said that drinking copious amounts of water can quell even the most worrisome of skin related woes. But interestingly enough, the reason why the skin benefits of water have seemed so buzzworthy is that despite celebs like Kim K and Jen Aniston swearing by the stuff, there are a growing group of credentialed peeps who are actually skeptical. So, which is it: does drinking water really help your skin? Or is that age old adage all washed up?
IN A NUTSHELL
Main Takeaways: The jury may be out regarding how best to do so, but there’s no doubt that keeping skin properly hydrated is key in maintaining a healthy, glowing complexion.
Good to Know: Drinking enough water is great, but you can hydrate by consuming other liquids as well. Just make sure that they are alcohol-free, low on sugar and caffeine, and full of natural, clean ingredients for a healthy and hydrated you!
Drinking Water for Skin
For ages, people have been told drinking lots of water can help assuage things like acne, dry skin, and even signs of aging like wrinkles and dark spots. And though we think we speak for everyone when we say that we’d love nothing more than to pour all our stock into what seems like an amazingly simple fix to some pretty wicked skin conditions, we may just want to sweat out our veg for just a tad longer…
If you were to look beyond the veil of celebrity rhetoric and even dare to substantiate the sagely teachings of your elders, you would find that (at least regarding this particular issue) the clinical data is just not there to support the theory that drinking tons of water helps the skin. WOMP WOMP! Sorry G’ma.
What researchers and dermatologists do maintain, however, is that sufficient hydration is critical for the health and function of the physical body and all its organs; this naturally includes the skin. But the key word here is “sufficient”. If you consistently achieve healthy hydration levels and consume the recommended amount of fluids (approximately 12-16 cups daily), drinking water in excess is not likely to advance the skin’s appearance. Further, and specifically with regard to rumors about water’s effects on aging skin, taking in fluids is not likely to affect the appearance of one’s fine lines or wrinkles at all, unless the skin is actually dehydrated.
The last thing to note is that science is science, so hydration is hydration. While it may take drinking more tea to equal the amount of hydration afforded by drinking pure water, as long as you are well hydrated, researchers posit that your skin won’t really be able to tell whether you got there by drinking purified tap or say coffee or even soup! Just be sure to moderate your caffeine intake to avoid its potentially diuretic effects and make sure whatever fluids you frequent will deliver natural, botanically-based hydration.
Benefits of Proper Hydration for Skin
While drinking water in excess won’t really do much for your complexion, staying hydrated is important for whole body health - your largest organ included. Here are some of the ways that proper hydration can benefit the skin:
- It can help protect a youthful appearance - As we said earlier, consider the myth that drinking tons of water will rid your skin of wrinkles totally busted! But hydration does help your skin look plumper than it would if it was dehydrated. So, drink enough to maintain skin resiliency and avoid a potentially aged appearance.
- Proper hydration can support skin healing - When the skin suffers an injury, blood rushes to the wound site carrying oxygen along with it. If the skin is dehydrated during this process, the blood will not be able to deliver the requisite amount of oxygen, thus prolonging the healing process. This lag time also can result in greater scarring while increasing the risk of infection. If you consider the scenario of a blemish gone wrong; it is easy to understand the relevance and so too, the importance of keeping your complexion hydrated.
- Staying hydrated will help support skin barrier function - Consider the outermost layer of the skin as your largest organ’s closer. Your epidermis is responsible for executing a slew of important tasks like enriching skin cells with nutrients and flushing out nasty toxins. It also helps protect against germs, allergens, and irritants. Unfortunately, it can’t slay the day away unless it’s well hydrated. So, make sure it has the moisture it needs to keep your skin - and your body - happy and healthy.
5 Ways to Stay Hydrated for Healthy Skin
Now that we’ve weeded out fact from fiction, here are five ways to make sure you stay hydrated for optimum skin health.
1. Limit Alcohol Consumption
Alcohol does many things to the body, the most visible of which being skin dehydration. Consuming even just a couple of cocktails basically sucks all the water from your skin. So, proceed mindfully when a glow is the goal.
2. Avoid Sugary and Processed Foods
When sugar and chemicals from processed foods flood the blood, our bodies attempt to restore balance by drawing water from places like the skin. So stick to a diet of whole foods to help maintain proper hydration levels and when you have a hankering for sugar, opt for something naturally sweet like some sumptuous strawberries! Which leads us to our next tip…
3. Eat Your Water!
We know that drinking the recommended amount of healthy fluids is critical to maintaining good hydration levels, but did you know you can also eat your water! Consuming colorful fruits and vegetables with high water content is a great way to support hydration, especially when these foods often contain natural vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes that can amplify the way your water works for you! Things like spinach, kale, strawberries, cherries, blueberries, cauliflower, cucumber, celery, and watermelon are amazing additions to your hydration repertoire, and more importantly a healthy diet.
4. Use a Humidifier.
Don’t just quit at hydrating from within! Adding a humidifier to your space can dramatically affect the moisture content in the skin and improve barrier function. On the go? Combat atmospheric dryness and give your skin a hydro-boost with a moisture rich toner like our Rose and Shine !
5. Invest in a Solid Moisturizer
The last, but maybe most important, way to protect your skin’s hydration level is by investing in a solid moisturizer. Drinking enough fluids is critical, but if you don’t seal in all that hydration, you stand the risk of losing it to the air around you - crazy but true. Our Crème de la Cream is rich with 20 nourishing actives that brighten while locking in skin-smoothing moisture. Want a more intensive dose of hydration? Look no further than our newly launched H2 Oh Yeah! This rich, emollient cream will provide all-day hydration and (unlike water) will actually help diminish the look of fine lines and wrinkles for a youthful glow that will have you saying “OH YEAH!”