Cleanse, tone, and moisturize.
That’s the mantra. But, we know it’s wrong. I mean, a toner may be nice-to-have but it’s by no means a must-have.
So, what about moisturizer? Could that be unnecessary too? Let’s take a look at what it is and what it does:
What’s A Moisturizer?
A moisturizer is simply a product designed to, well… moisturize skin. It does this by increasing its moisture levels and repairing its natural protective barrier, which, when damaged, lets water evaporate.
But, what you may not know is that skin already has its own natural moisturizer. It’s called sebum. Yep, that thing you hate because it can turn your face into a shiny and bubbly frying pan.
That happens when skin produces too much of it. Too little of it, on the other hand, dries out skin. But, when your skin makes just the amount it needs, it’s able to perfectly moisturize itself on its own.
Does that make a moisturizer useless?
For some people yes.
So, who doesn’t need it?
1. Normal skin
Your skin is already producing all the sebum it needs. Not a bit more. Not a bit less. You can still use a moisturizer, especially one that’s loaded with antioxidants if you want to, but you don’t have to.
2. Severe Oily skin
Your skin already produces too much oil. The last thing you need is more. That’s why traditional moisturizers don’t work for you. But, sometimes, your skin can be dehydrated. Yep, dehyadrated and oily. When that happens, an oil-free moisturizer can help. Just listen to what your skin, not marketing “wisdom”, is telling you.
Everyone else, pile on your moisturizer!
Oh, And Don’t Confuse Moisturizers With Anti-Aging Products!
If you want to use a moisturizer anyway because you think you can help with aging, think again. I mean, the best moisturizers out there do. There are plenty that contain antioxidants, retinol, glycolic acid, and everything else skin needs to keep wrinkles away.
But, plenty more don’t. They are just basic formulas that promise you to turn the clock back 20 years and then just provide a bit of additional moisture. That’s it.
So, if you don’t need a moisturizer but want to fight wrinkles, you have two choices:
- Opt for an antioxidants-rich moisturizer
- Ditch the moisturizer and opt for an antioxidants-rich serum instead
Personally, I prefer the second option. Serums contain higher concentrations of antioxidants and have lighter textures that can more easily penetrate skin, so they work better and faster. Makes more sense to invest in one of those, don’t you think?
Guide To Moisturizers
Need help picking the perfect moisturizer for your skin type? Download my short ebook "The Smart Girl's Guide To Moisturizers" for my best picks and recommendations.
The Bottom Line
As moisturizers are designed to improve skin’s moisture levels, you only need one when your skin isn’t able to naturally moisturize itself well. If it can, skip the moisturizer and opt for an antioxidants-rich serum instead.
Do you use a moisturizer?