How often should I moisturise?


Have you ever wondered how often you should moisturise? Have you ever felt a bit bamboozled by the array of creams, lotions, sprays, etc to choose from? Then read on to see what this intrepid seeker of beautiful skin discovered about Moisturisers!

Our thoughts are turning to Summer, and if you’re anything like me, then it’s time to take a good look at those parts of our bodies last seen in public way back in 2019! 

The great unveiling happened at my house last night, and the results weren’t pretty. There are parts of the Sahara that have seen more moisture in the last year than my legs - but ever the optimist, I am going to do all a girl can do to right this wrong and have my pins looking spectacular in no time. 

With that in mind I am going to keep in mind Rudyard Kipling’s Six Honest Serving Men - What, Why and When, How, Where and Who - to help me achieve my goal…

So WHAT is Moisturiser? 

Moisturisers come in all shapes and sizes, from sprays that sink into the skin in no time at all, lotions that are a little heavier, through to rich, unctuous creams, and several in between. 

Their efficacy is partly, although not totally determined by the viscosity of the product. 

Put simply a moisturiser is an emulsion which holds together water and oil.  If there is no water then the product is known as a balm or an ointment.  Moisturiser is a cosmetic preparation used for protecting, lubricating and moisturising the skin. 

These functions are usually carried out by the sebum produced in the skin, but various factors can lead to the need for help from a body moisturiser, which leads me onto my next point...

WHY do we need Moisturisers?

In an ideal world, the sebum produced by our skin would give sufficient protection to the skin from outside influences like water, wind, exposure to the sun, or the cold.

But sadly as we age we become less efficient at this and the time comes to call in the big guns! There are moisturisers that resurface common skin conditions such as keratosis pilaris or brighten hyper-pigmentation. 

If you’ve ever used a self-tanning cream and the end result is starting to look a little patchy then there are moisturisers containing glycolic acid which break down the remaining DHA in the skin and so remove the offending patches without the need for scrubbing away several layers of skin!

Why we moisturise is also dependent on our skin type or condition, to a certain extent.  If you have dry skin then you’ll need a thicker, oil-based cream, on the other hand, if your skin is oily then you’ll want a light oil-free moisturiser, preferably one that is non-comedogenic or doesn’t clog pores.

Sensitive skin benefits from creams with soothing ingredients such as calendula or aloe vera.  It’s a good idea to stay away from fragrances if you have sensitive skin as the perfumes often contained in creams can really irritate the skin.

If you have mature skin then it’s anti-ageing ingredients that you’re interested in, for example, Retinol or gently exfoliating acids (Alpha Hydroxy Acids - AHAs). 

There is a moisturiser out there for every single one of us - we just need to use it ...note to self!!  

We need to moisturise to keep the “barrier” effect of our skin in tip-top condition - we don’t want bacteria and other nasties getting into our body through cracks on the feet or around the fingers - and neither do we want the pain of cracked skin around our fingertips every winter!! 

Basically we need to moisturise to give our skin every chance it has to protect us and do its job- it’s the largest organ in the body don’t forget, AND keep us looking fabulous at whatever age we are! No small order in my case!!

So WHEN do we moisturise?

The answer to that is really simple. Daily  - either first thing in the morning after your shower or perhaps last thing after your bath before bed. 

Either way, it doesn’t matter - just do it, as the famous sports brand orders us!  If you’re still paying attention at this point a) well done and b) have you noticed that both those times to lather on the lotion happen after you’ve either come out of the bath or the shower! 

This is no coincidence!! A mountain of research shows that lotions and potions are absorbed better by the skin when it is still damp - moist skin seems to absorb moisturisers much more effectively than dry skin.

So, before you reach for your clothes or pj’s spare a thought for your skin and pile on the cream!!

HOW do we do this…??

Not so difficult to work out really, but like I said earlier moisturisers come in all sorts. 

There are Humectants eg glycerine and hyaluronic acid which draw moisture from the atmosphere and other cells, and other products applied to the skin’s surface.

Emollients, for example, Shea Butter or Ceramides help to create a smooth surface that improve the skin’s appearance.

Emollients are often used in the treatment of various skin conditions such as psoriasis or atopic dermatitis, or in nappies in order to prevent nappy rash. 

The list is endless...suncream, deodorant, shaving cream etc

Occlusive Agents,  for example, Petroleum Jelly or Jojoba Oil sits on the skin’s surface and create a physical barrier against water loss, and therefore maintain good hydration.

And WHERE do we moisturise?

That sounds like a bit of a trick question, doesn’t it?

The answer is that you can moisturise everywhere! BUT never put moisturiser for the body on your face. 

Facial skin is much thinner and more sensitive so would be very quickly irritated by creams meant for the body. 

Incidentally, often even the fragrances found in body creams are enough to bring the face out in a nasty rash so just don’t go there! 

Pay attention to your ankles and feet as they can really suffer - mine look like a war zone at the moment after the winter - and elbows can be another casualty of months spent under long sleeves!

Finally...WHO moisturises or perhaps the question should be FOR WHOM do we moisturise?!

The answer to WHO moisturises is EVERYONE - young, old, male, female. 

The skin provides the same invaluable service to us all and the younger we are when we start to show it some “TLC” then the better it can serve us.  And as FOR WHOM… that’s YOUR secret!


Moisturising is important for ALL of us. There are lots of products on the market, and the right cream for you is out there, whatever our skin type or condition.

Consistency is key, making sure to use a moisturiser every day after a bath or shower, while the skin is still damp. 

So make a commitment and start today - Summer is just around the corner! 


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