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Cosmeceutical Skincare - dermoi

Dehydrated Acne Prone Skin: The Only Guide You Need

October 25, 2022

Dehydrated skin is a leading cause of acne - find out why and what you can do to prevent it.

Skin cells require a lot of moisture to function properly. Sufficient moisturizing keeps the epidermis toned and fresh-looking, while poor hydration leads to premature aging and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. This is why it`s essential to ensure proper moisturizing of cells.

Sufficient hydration allows for coping with multiple skin problems. Once cells get enough moisturizing, they perform properly, renewal processes are not slowed down, and they are toned and elastic.

dehydrated acne prone skin routine

How Does Dehydrated Skin Look?

When the skin is not sufficiently hydrated it loses its plump, youthful radiance. Think of a turgid plant and what happens when it starts to wilt: it gets dry, flakey, and wrinkly. Skin itchiness and inflammation is also commonly associated with dehydrated skin. The lack of hydration causes excess oil production which ends up clogging pores. The clogged pores then proceed to trigger inflammation. This can't be soothed without some sort of moisture or hydration.

The difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin

Many people confuse dry skin with dehydration. When we talk about dryness, we mean insufficient activity of the sebaceous glands. So, here`s the point: dryness is a skin type; it does not change. Dehydration is a temporary symptom that can be eliminated.

Dry acne-prone skin needs constant care to look healthy; a skincare routine is picked, taking into account the peculiarities of the skin type. Dehydrated skin also needs treatment; yet, it`s possible to normalize its hydro-lipid level with corresponding highly moisturizing skincare products.

What causes dehydrated skin?

Dehydration can occur on both the face and body. Its main reasons include:

  • insufficient water intake;
  • taking diuretics or following certain diets;
  • food poisoning, certain diseases, or previous surgeries;
  • abuse of alcohol or caffeine;
  • too dry air;
  • regular exposure to ultraviolet radiation;
  • improper care (too aggressive cleansing or the application of alcohol-containing products);
  • age-related changes (the skin rapidly loses moisture due to a decrease in the production of hyaluronic acid).

Any of these causes can lead to an increased loss of moisture in cells, which inevitably results in cracks, sagging, fine lines, and premature aging.

Can Dehydration Cause Acne Breakouts?

Dehydration can most definitely cause acne breakouts. In fact, it is one of the main factors associated with acne prone skin. Anyone can get dehydrated skin regardless of their skin type. It is caused by insufficient hydration.

Dehydrated skin disrupts the skin’s natural moisture barrier. It does this by disrupting the water-oil balance in the skin. It is worth noting that oil and water should not be considered synonymous. Water provides essential hydration to drive biochemical processes in the skin. On the other hand, oil is emollient and locks in the hydration. Both components work together to maintain the skin’s moisture barrier.

However, do not fret if your skin’s moisture barrier seems to have gone a bit haywire. Dehydrated skin is often associated with environmental stressors. If you are in a humid country, the skin’s oil production tends to spike up and vice versa. Even with the change of seasons - transitioning from summer to winter, it requires your skin to adapt to the differing moisture content in the air.

This is why tweaking your skincare routine according to the seasons is crucial. Having a few fail-proof products on hand to soothe dehydrated skin helps maintain skin moisture levels. A few of our go-tos are the Evenswiss Balancing Complex and ZENii Pro Hydrate. Both of these work to help restore moisture in dehydrated skin.

dehydrated acne prone skin

BEST Acne-prone, dehydrated skin products

  • PCA Skin Clearskin is the best moisturizer for dehydrated acne-prone skin. It is an effective product with a rich active formula. The content comprises powerful ingredients that penetrate cells and lock moisture. A deep hydrating effect is achieved due to the addition of botanical acids, vitamins, and Niacinamide. The blend normalizes cell functioning, soothes pores, and reduces sensitivity. The product is suitable for all skin types.
  • Jan Marini Bioclear Face Cream is a blend of three essential acids that cause a deep moisturizing effect. The formula consists of Salicylic, Glycolic, and Azelaic acids. The mix has a positive effect on dehydrated cells, moisturizing and nourishing them. Besides, the cream diminishes wrinkles, fine lines, and redness, revitalizing complexion.
  • Jan Marini Bioclear Face Lotion is a powerful solution for dehydrated skin breakouts. It is a super-charged mixture of acids for daily skincare routine. The product helps revitalize the skin complexion and prevents dehydration. The blend of active components causes a versatile effect, normalizing the pH level, smoothing fine lines, and moisturizing cells deeply.
  • Evenswiss Balancing Complex is a super-action serum for problematic and dehydrated epidermis. Its formula contains highly active ingredients that are easily absorbed and penetrate cells, causing a targeted action. Dermatopoietin, Niacinamide, Shea butter, and floral extracts (Bilberry) for the main content with a high concentration. The product is highly effective for pores, cleansing them and balancing the pH level.
  • Neostrata Sheer Hydration SPF 40 is another working solution for daily skincare for dry acne-prone skin. It`s a broad-spectrum moisturizer with an SPF filter for reliable protection against sunlight. Formulated with a Botanical blend and NeoGlucosamine, the moisturizer causes a deep action, normalizing cellular processes and nourishing the epidermis. The SPF factor is very high and guarantees effective protection against UV, sunlight, and other types of radiation.
  • Oxygenetix Acne Control Hydro Matrix is a super effective acne treatment. Its potent formula soothes pores, normalizes sebum production, prevents acne breakouts, and moisturizes cells deeply, penetrating cell structures and boosting skin renewal mechanisms. Its high oxygenation properties allow for enhancing healing ability. The blend of acids comes as a powerful weapon. Hyaluronic acid attracts moisture to cells, hydrating them, and salicylic acid heals breakouts.

The variety of products is high on the market. So, when selecting a suitable treatment, pay attention to your skin type and product composition. To prevent dehydration, make sure to apply moisturizers twice per day.

How Long Does Dehydrated Skin Take To Heal?

Since everybody’s skin is different, it is quite difficult to pinpoint an exact time frame. If the problem is solely due to dehydration and not a compromised skin barrier, 3 months of consistent skincare application should start to give you results. Though, this is just an estimate and should not be taken as a hard and fast rule.

How Do You Treat Dehydrated Acne Prone Skin?

There was a famous old school home method of treating acne prone skin - to dry out your skin on the belief that it would make your skin less oily. While in theory it sounds reasonable, it is definitely one of the worst methods in practice and would worsen acne.

Drying out the skin by not applying moisturiser, or using a stripping cleanser would deprive your skin of the hydration that it craves. This will push it to overcompensate for this lack of moisture by producing even more excess oil.

There are two essential steps in treating dehydrated skin. If the skin is merely dehydrated, look out for a good lightweight moisturiser that will deliver you a pack of hydration such as the Evenswiss Rich Regenerating Cream.

As well as this, ZENii Pro Hydrate is another great moisturising solution. This supplement is a tried and true skincare solution packed with sodium hyaluronate. This acts as a vessel to transport water molecules to supplement the skin with hydration.

To seal in all that moisture, we recommend pairing it with the Indeed Labs Clearify Facial Oil for optimum hydration. The Indeed Labs Clearify Oil has a unique lightweight, non-greasy formula. It helps nourish your skin and rebalance oil production.

Should You Hydrate Acne Prone Skin?

As mentioned above hydration is essential in skincare, especially if you have acne prone skin. Water is essential in providing an optimum medium for biochemical processes. It is also a universal solvent that helps to transport waste products and toxins to be excreted from the skin. Hence, water is essential for supplementing skin regeneration and healing acne.

If you are worried about oiliness and prefer lightweight water based products instead of the Indeed Labs Clearify Facial Oil, try the Evenswiss Balancing Complex. Evenswiss Balancing Complex is a serum that works to improve congested, oily, dehydrated acne prone skin. This is more of a targeted skincare solution, so pair it with any trusted moisturiser for best results.

Besides hydration, there are other factors to consider when battling with dehydrated acne prone skin. Whilst delivering moisture to your skin should be of main priority, treatment requires finding the right balance of active ingredients as well.

Retinoids, AHAs and a daily exfoliating cleanser such as Exfoliator II by Indeed Labs would be a great accompaniment to your skincare routine. Retinoids increase cell turnover to yield new skin cells. AHAs help to gently decongest the skin by buffing away accumulated dead skin cells.

Indeed Labs Clearify Oil for dehydrated acne prone skin

How do I moisturize my dehydrated skin?

Moisturizers are used to hydrate cells with water. Such skincare products contain ingredients that attract and retain moisture in cells, preventing dehydration. For example, hyaluronic acid comes as the most famous and powerful moisturizer. It locks liquid in cells, ensuring the required hydro level. This is why moisturizers come as an obligatory product in your skincare kit for daily application. Moisturizing is the last step of a regular skincare routine.

Should I exfoliate dehydrated skin?

It`s possible to exfoliate dehydrated epidermis. However, one should do it with great caution. Dermatologists and cosmetologists suggest restoring the hydro-lipid level first and then, introducing exfoliating procedures. If you still want to exfoliate dehydrated cells, give preference to gentle products.


To sum up the article, let’s clarify the correlation between dehydrated skin and acne. Answering the question “Can dehydrated skin cause acne”, note that each body is individual. However, in most cases, acne appears as the consequence of extra sebum synthesis and accumulation, which leads to clogging pores and bacterial growth. This is not the case for dry skin; on the contrary, these symptoms are typical for the oily epidermis.


  • 1. Thiboutot, D. and Del Rosso, J.Q. (2013). Acne Vulgaris and the Epidermal Barrier: Is Acne Vulgaris Associated with Inherent Epidermal Abnormalities that Cause Impairment of Barrier Functions? Do Any Topical Acne Therapies Alter the Structural and/or Functional Integrity of the Epidermal Barrier? The Journal of clinical and aesthetic dermatology, [online] 6(2), pp.18–24. Available at:
  • 2. Healthline. (2019). Dry vs. Dehydrated Skin: 8 Traits to Help You Tell the Difference. [online] Available at:

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