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Understanding the skin, benefits of hydration

Skin hydration

Either extremely white skin or very dark skin, although this later not always has African origins but is a mixture whose dominant factor is dark pigmentation, need their “tailored suit”.

What does this mean? Easy. There are specific needs for each skin that should be satisfied as from four basic products: cleanser, moisturizing, antioxidant and photoprotector. It all depends on the skin type, age and degree of photoaging.

Morphologically, both, white and black or dark skin are the same. The epidermis is identical and has the same structure. The big difference precisely lies on the color that has nothing to do with a greater amount of melanocytes because it is equal for all the races, it’s just that these melanocytes in the black race or very dark skins have a great activity, permanently producing a lot of Melanin or melanosomes (even without the stimulation of the sun). This is not the case of white skins.

Another considerable difference is that black skins contain a greater number of layers of cells and a percentage of lipids sensibly greater than in the white skins. Therefore, it has a more compact aspect, creating a lower percutaneous absorption and a barrier to cosmetic products. The moisturizers, whether BB creams, CC creams or simply those that give a healthy color to the skin, all of them truly pursue the same goal: moisturize while hiding imperfections. They act on the stratum corneum, that is, the most superficial part of the skin that is always in contact with the environment. It is formed by different layers of keratinized cells, resistant and flexible, covered with lipids: ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids. This organization of the skin superficial layer restrict the loss of water from the dermis, the inner layer.

The deepest part of the skin, the dermis, is supported by a complex network of collagen fibers. Throughout the evolution of photoaging, the amount of dermal elastin decreases, that’s why the skin is more prone to becoming wrinkled. If a moisturizer would want to reach this level of depth it requires active ingredients that stimulate the production of collagen and / or hyaluronic acid as the messenger peptides, which are naturally found in the skin and activate the skin cells to produce new collagen.

As men have a slightly thicker dermis and larger sebaceous and sweat glands than women due to a hormonal differences, it does not, in any way, affect the basic needs of skin care. For sure, the signs of aging appear later on the man’s skin but the changes occur more quickly once they begin. Men should use light textured moisturizers. They should also be smooth and soothing to prevent the removal of natural lipids from the skin, which are already affected because the outer layer of skin cells is destroyed by shaving.

TEXT: Elena Crespo; IMAGES: Suresh/Archivo