What is damp skin?

Have you been making this common hyaluronic acid mistake?

It’s always a good idea to get advice when you are buying a hyaluronic acid product so that you don’t end up making this common mistake.

Hyaluronic acid is one of the big buzz words in skincare at the moment. If you’ve got Vitamins A and C and some hyaluronic acid thrown in, you will basically never age. Ha! We wish. But seriously, these are some of the most important ingredients to look out for in skincare if you are over the age of 25.

Hyaluronic acid is naturally occurring in our bodies. Our body produces it to keep us hydrated. The bad news is that once you hit the age of 30 the body’s hyaluronic levels are depleted and it’s downhill from there. Hyaluronic products are ideal to pump moisture into the skin. In turn, it gives skin a plumped out, smoother and most importantly younger appearance.

I have heard so much about it, so of course, I’ve added it into my skincare routine and used it on several occasions. I have dehydrated and dry skin so this should be my dream product. But for some reason, I just didn’t like it. If anything it seemed to be making my skin even drier. So, in essence, it was having the opposite effect of what was intended.


I was chatting with Jennifer Rock, The Skin Nerd, the other day and told her about this baffling situation and she kindly put me straight. So, here’s the secret. Hyaluronic is a humectant. That means that it draws moisture towards it and holds onto it so that the skin can absorb it. This all seems very straightforward – but there is a catch. You must lock in hyaluronic acid with a heavier cream. Applying something over it will seal the product in. If you don’t apply something on top of it, it can draw the moisture out of your dehydrated skin instead of pulling moisture from the air and into your skin. If your skin is particularly dry you can apply it to damp skin and apply your usual moisturiser after.

Janssen Cosmetics Moisture Booster €20

For some people, it simply won’t suit their skin. If that’s the case you should discontinue use. My skin often breaks the rules. There is always an alternative and there isn’t just one skincare solution to suit everybody. So don’t be afraid to try something different until you find the best solution for your the skin you’re in.

Quora .

This question originally appeared on Quora. Answer by Tatiana Aynbinder.

Why is damp skin best for applying products?

When perfecting your skincare routine, it’s essential to consider the best methods for applying products to your skin. Proper application helps to ensure that your products are working optimally to deliver their active ingredients into your skin.

Apply your products onto your skin when it’s damp (not wet) for better absorption of the active ingredients. When your skin is moist, it is significantly more permeable than when dry. This permeability allows for better absorption of alcohol-free toners, serums, lotions and creams, enabling them to work deeper, faster, and with a higher concentration of active ingredients.

For an extra boost, optimize the effectiveness of your facial products by using a hydrating (non-alcohol based) toner that contains high concentrations of active ingredients (appropriate for your skin type) as a mist to dampen your skin. Instead of making applications after showering by using the humidity of the shower, you can add another layer to your skincare routine by using a concentrated toner. A facial toner or mist adds powerful active properties that can improve, correct and protect your skin, while allowing subsequent products to penetrate deeply.

Moist skin can improve the efficacy of your skincare products. However, you should still be cautious and follow directions precisely. For example, some medications or topical treatments are prescribed for use on dry skin, such as certain prescription retinoids, or acne meds that have high levels of active ingredients (or include alcohol). Some of these can cause irritation if not used according to directions.

Sunscreen is designed to be applied to dry skin. The purpose of mineral sunscreens (like titanium dioxide) is to sit on the top layer of skin and not be absorbed. These act as a shield, protecting your skin by reflecting away harmful UV rays. Make sure you apply sunscreen to dry skin so it isn’t diluted by moisture.

Getting to know proper methods of application, and being consistent with your use of topicals, will aid the penetration of active ingredients into your skin. Proper methods of use will ensure that you’re getting maximal results from your skincare regimen.

I hope this helps!

More from Quora:

  • What are some simple things you do every day to slow down/prevent aging?
  • What are some of the best skincare tips?
  • How did you get rid of acne scars on face?

BEAUTICATE | You should think twice about using a towel to dry your face

We bet that as soon as you finish washing your face your first inclination is to grab your towel and pat it dry. It’s a natural instinct really. However, did you know that keeping your skin damp could increase the efficacy of any products you use following your cleanse? Damp skin acts like a sponge, and is quicker at absorbing ingredients that come into contact. Even worse, consider all the potential acne causing bacteria your towel could be harbouring. We’re here to help you kick your towel to the curb.

Drying your face after each cleanse has always seemed like the right thing to do. The natural thing to do. However, topical products will better penetrate the skin when it’s damp, which, if you’ve been investing a lot of money in your skincare, you want them to work.

Before you go jumping out of the shower and straightaway layering on oils, we should mention that your skin needs to be damp, not wet. There are little to no benefits found in layering skincare over saturated, wet skin.

Dr Jart+ Water Fuse Hydro Toner

Jocelyn Petroni, one of Australia’s leading beauty experts (renowned for her facials) and owner of salon Jocelyn Petroni, informs us that following a cleanse, the skin remains damp for a certain amount of time until the water in the skin’s surface evaporates. So it’s best to continue with your skincare routine quickly. If your skin dries out too much, “you can spritz with a toner to re-moisten the skin’s surface. I like Shemana’s Heart Activation Mist which is infused with Vanilla and Rose.”

Shemana Heart Activation Spray

Toners have come a long way these days, Jocelyn says. The function of toners have become more like serums that put much needed moisture and vitamins back into the skin, while working to balance our skin’s pH levels. Throughout the years, their names have evolved into ‘essence’ or ‘spritz’, so look for any of the aforementioned products to add moisture back into the dermis.

“All the benefits of essences are specific to your skin type and whilst they may not be a necessary step in your skincare routine, they certainly can visibly improve your skin, on a case by case circumstance.”

Jurlique Activating Water Essence

Don’t fret! Having damp skin is better for the activation and absorption of your skincare ingredients, but they haven’t been rendered useless if you’ve been applying on dry skin. “Skin care ingredients will soak into the skin and do their job regardless if your skin is damp or not upon application. However, the benefit of applying products to damp skin means you can apply products more quickly and you can also see better skin results”, Jocelyn says.

Son and Park Beauty Water

For example I apply a serum each morning to my skin (Ultraceuticals Brightening Serum) and then I apply an oil (Shemana’s Ritual Face Serum) which I apply just before the serum has been completely absorbed, to help the oil’s penetration. The oil in turn helps my moisturiser soak in and my moisturiser helps my sunscreen soak in etc…”

Additionally, “applying product to dry skin also requires the product itself to moisten and soften the skin cells as it is being absorbed. Applying product directly to damp skin means less irritation for extremely dry and sensitive skin types that could otherwise become irritated by the speed of delivery of ingredients to dry skin.”

Ultraceuticals Ultra Brightening Serum

So next time you step out of the shower, avoid towering off your face first, and waste no time applying your favourite serum. We know it seems like this is just another step to add to your beauty routine, but at least it’s an easy one to remember!

Image: Instagram @emrata
Words by Yadira Galarza Cauchi for BEAUTICATE

Askanesthetician’s Blog

If you want your skincare products to penetrate and work up to their promised potential try one small trick: apply them to damp skin. There is a difference, of course, between damp skin and wet skin. If you apply skincare products to wet skin they will simply slide off, but damp skin, according to Allure, “acts like a sponge, quickly absorbing whatever comes its way.”

According to David Bank, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Columbia University/New York-Presbyterian Hospital, “when the skin is hydrated and plumped up – after cleansing or a warm shower – ingredients penetrate more easily into and between cells, which is especially important when you’re using products that need to work their way down into the slightly deeper layers of skin to do things like stimulate collagen. Any water molecules lurking about will act like lubricants.”

So the next time after you shower or wash your face be sure to gently pat your face dry and then apply your skincare products. If you the idea of applying skincare products to damp skin still sounds a bit strange to you experiment with your body moisturizer after the shower for a few days and see if you feel a difference.

There is one exception to this skincare rule: mineral sunscreen. If applied to damp skin mineral sunscreen can run, give uneven coverage, and look white and chalky on the skin.

Source and Further Reading: Tip 3 from 8 Ways to Make Your Skin-Care Products More Effective in Allure

Korean skincare has a reputation for being at the forefront of effective and savvy skincare.

So when we heard about a new skincare trend, we had to sit up and listen.

Dubbed the Three-Second Moisturising Rule, aesthetician Charlotte Cho told Allure about her recent trip to South Korea, where she learned that women apply their skincare three seconds after washing their face.

Why? Charlotte explained to Allure that reaching for your lotions and potions straight away is better as ‘damp skin is more receptive to topical actives when wet’.

We approached Dr Anjali Mahto, consultant dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic, to see if there was any truth behind the trend.


‘Applying products while the skin is damp can have its benefits, however the most penetrative products with active ingredients should be applied first,’ explains Dr Mahto.

‘Therefore, it’s best to apply a serum directly after cleansing and toning, but before moisturising – you should always apply the thinner textures before moving on to the thickest.’

So how does it work? Dr Mahto explain that moist skin is many times more permeable than dry skin, ‘so when applying product to damp skin, the active ingredients can penetrate the skin on a deeper level’.

But as for the three second time limit, Dr Mahto assures that it isn’t completely necessary. She adds, ‘After cleansing, take the time to work in your serum, paying attention to any problem areas and applying from the centre of your face outwards so you are not leaving product in the hairline. Then, apply your moisturiser evenly to the face and neck.’


(Images: Getty)

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Face creams have been used for centuries already. Using and applying face creams is essential for every skin type and for every age. Face creams protect the skin from the environmental aggression’s, from dehydration and keep the skin healthy-looking.

The benefits of using and applying face creams are:

  • protect the skin from the sun, wind, cold
  • nourish the skin
  • moisturize the skin
  • comfort and plump the skin
  • improve skin’s quality
  • slow down the natural moisture loss
  • prevent skin dehydration
  • work as a day treatments
  • create a base for the makeup application
  • prevent dryness and cracking
  • keep the skin smooth and supple

1st step: Wash your face first

No matter what time of the day you apply the face cream, you need to wash your face. This way you get rid of sweat, grime, makeup etc. This will allow the cream to penetrate into your pores and work its magic. Also use a gentle face cleanser to wash it off properly.

2nd step: Application on damp skin

Always apply your face cream on damp skin. If you wait for your face to dry off completely, it won’t work. Creams are better able to lock in moisture when you apply on damp skin. After you finish, pat your skin dry.

3rd step: Use small quantities

The best way to apply a face cream is using small quantities. Using more doesn’t always show the benefits. It takes a long time to rub the cream on your face as opposed to when you use less. Your face should be able to absorb the cream rather than feel sticky.

4th step: Dab it smooth

Instead of taking a finger full of it, apply small spots all over your face and then smoothen it out. This way you will be able to apply the cream on every bit of your face.

Useful tips:

– Always apply face cream or a moisturizer before applying the foundation even if your skin is oily.
– If your skin is prone to breakouts or is prone to acne choose a cream containing alpha hydroxy or benzoyl peroxide.
– A face cream should be applied daily , even if you aren’t going to apply makeup.
– always apply the cream to a clean and toned face.
– Always make sure your hands are clean before applying moisturizer, face cream or foundation.
– Select a products with SPF at least 15 to protect your skin from the harmful UVA/ UVB rays.
– You can wear a sunscreen over your cream.
– Make sure the cream is appropriate for your skin type.
– Don’t use heavy and too thick cream even if your skin is very dry.
– If your skin is oily select a oil-free and non-comedogenic matifying cream.
– If your foundation disappear within few hours of application, or drags when you blend it that means that probably your skin needs more moisture.
– Always apply calming or hydrating face cream after exfoliation, because exfoliating causes the skin to dry out and needs more moisture.
– Never use heavy creams or moisturizers around the eyes as these could irritate your eyes.
– The better the quality of your cream the more protection from dryness it will give you.
– Never keep your moisturizer, face cream or other skincare or makeup products in the bathroom as water may get in them, which can spread bacteria.
– Many brands offer day and night face creams that work together to achieve best results.
– Always make sure the cream is well-absorbed into the skin before you apply makeup.
– Choose a cream with sun protection (SPF 15 or higher) , specially during the summer months to prevent skin discoloration, brown spots, post-pimple scars and redness.