The difference between dry and dehydrated skin

It’s very common to confuse skin dryness with dehydration. 

At its simplest, dry skin is a skin type, whilst dehydrated skin is a condition that truly anyone can experience. 

Dehydrated skin refers to when your skin has a lack of water in the top layer of the skin.

Some of the key causes of dehydrated skin include sun exposure, air conditioning/central heating, hot water, ageing and incorrect skin care choices. Dehydration is actually one of the most common skin issues, affecting up to 96% of the population.

Dry skin refers to a low production of oil in the skin. This is a skin type that is often genetic, meaning that it runs within your family. 


How to tell the difference:

Whilst both can leave your skin appearing flaky and dull, as well as feeling itchy, sensitive or tight, here are some key differences:


  • Feels dry all over
  • Is constant, particularly in cooler months


  • Can feel oily and dry simultaneously
  • Can be experienced by any skin type
  • Comes and goes
  • May experience breakouts

woman skincare

So now that you may have more of an idea of what you may be experiencing, here are some ingredients to look out for. 

Dry Skin

Shea Butter


Phytoactives (Plant Oils)

Dehydrated Skin

Hyaluronic Acid



woman skin

Want to find out more about different skincare ingredients and what combinations work best? Read all about it here.

Want to chat to a therapist about your skin and what you’re experiencing? Book your appointment by clicking here.