When it comes to hydration, not all products are created equal. Especially for those with oily or dry skin, there are often better times to use one product rather than another. Byrdie explains the difference succinctly by describing oil as “food” for the skin, while lotion simply soothes various skin concerns with water-based formulas.
Body oils work to bring moisture back into your skin and sink directly into your cells, the outlet notes. Think of oil as the substance that dives deep to moisturize from within. The constitution of skin oils often resembles that of our natural oils, meaning that they work similarly to our body’s natural hydration processes. This simulation aids in repairs such as skin regeneration and regulation of its moisture barrier, Byrdie reveals. Plus, oils often contain more natural ingredients than lotions do, with fewer synthetics and potential irritants. Essentially, oils were much more available hundreds of years ago, before mass-produced products were on store shelves. As such, they can be much easier on sensitive skin.
Lotion is water-based and glides smoothly over the top of the skin, plus it comes in various options that alleviate various ailments. If you have dry skin, the outlet explains, this will likely work best for you, as it soothes cracks within the top layer.
Body oil is much thicker than lotion
Contrary to what many think, body oil works best for oily skin because it decreases your body’s natural sebum production, Byrdie reports. By adding a moisturizer that imitates the natural process, your body can slow down its own creation of oil — leaving less on the skin to cause breakouts. Basically, body oil proves to be a much denser addition to your skincare routine with long-lasting benefits.
However, lotion also provides much-needed moisture by penetrating the skin with its part-water formula, according to the outlet. Plus, it can often have skin-beautifying additions. “Look for lotions containing hyaluronic acid and ceramides—both enhance skin’s water-retaining abilities over time,” certified dermatologist, Rachel Nazarian, told the outlet. But, using the two together might be your best bet for deep, lasting hydration. Dr. Loretta Ciraldo explains that the two complement each other extremely well, telling Well+Good, “A body oil will provide a protective barrier to the dry skin and keep your skin texture smooth, while lotion tends to evaporate and not give the same tactile textural improvement you’d get from an oil.”
For those suffering from intensely dry skin, the combination of the two products can offer an even deeper layer of moisture. The outlet suggests adding a few drops of body oil to your lotion for a nourishing elixir that will have your skin looking supple in no time.
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