Tips to Hydrate Your Way to Healthy Skin

The skin plays a vital role in hydrating the body and protecting it against pathogens, UV radiations and other external agents. The skin comprises collagen, fat cells and almost 64% water. Subsequently, water loss or skin dehydration through sun damage, chemical irritants or an unhealthy diet can impact the protective barrier and allow bacterial invasion resulting in acne breakouts and eczema symptoms. In due course, these symptoms can exacerbate, leading to discolored and dull skin having an aged appearance.

Water Loss in humans is essential for regulating the temperature and removing toxins through sweat and urine. Usually, humans lose 300 to 400 ml of water daily through skin diffusion and an equal amount through the respiratory tract, exhaled or breathed. The combined water loss makes up 30-50% of the water loss the body needs to replenish to maintain the balance through foods, liquids and other hydrating mechanisms.

Know how to Hydrate Your way to Healthy Skin

Water is crucial for repairing the skin damage caused by aging factors and external elements and getting it supple and glowing at all times. Studies conducted on healthy females have shown that higher dietary water intake positively impacts skin psychology, especially in those with lower daily water consumption.

Some of the essential benefits offered by water for the skin are

Flushes Toxins

Blood-urea Nitrogen is regarded as the main toxin in the human body that, in higher concentrations, can give rise to problems like joint pains, back pains, muscle cramping and fatigue with kidney failure in abnormally high concentrations. Water plays a vital role in such conditions in helping the kidneys flush BUN out through urine. Detoxing reduces inflammation and improves blood flow, giving the skin a younger-looking and radiant appearance.

Helps in Forming the Protective Barrier Against External Elements

The Stratum corneum of the epidermis, is regarded as the chief protective barrier of the skin and prevents unwanted pathogens/ foreign bodies from entering the skin and excess water from being evaporated from the body. Studies have shown the stratum corneum to be composed of fluid lipids crucial in maintaining its barrier properties. Drinking water regulates these fluid lipids and keeps the stratum corneum dense and thick to continue its protective functions adequately.

Reduces the Appearance of fine Lines

Keeping the skin adequately hydrated increases dermal water levels in the dermis's layers. The result is a decrease in the friction between the collagen fibres and an increase in their quantity, reducing the appearance of fine lines. Staying sufficiently hydrated has been known to reduce deep lines' intensity and prevent soft lines from appearing.

Prevents Breakouts

Sufficient water intake reduces the skin's oiliness and prevents excess oil formation that, in normal circumstances, would clog the skin pores and promote breakouts and acne. The body's detoxification through hydration removes skin surface bacteria that contribute to acne mechanisms.

Maintains the pH Balance

The skin has a slightly acidic pH crucial for maintaining its protective barrier, neutralizing the alkaline-based aggressors in harsh skin products and inhibiting bacterial growth while maintaining the optimum environment in which its natural flora can survive. Additionally, water intake supports the cutaneous water content that helps the skin maintain its pH balance at the required limit of 5.5.

Helps in Collagen Buildup

Water constitutes 60% of the weight of collagen, a protein produced by the body's connective tissues that provide structural support to the skin tissues. Studies have shown that water constitutes the tensile strength of collagen, and a decrease in water levels impacts collagen production, giving a sagging facial appearance. Staying hydrated boosts collagen production and reverses the aging effects on the skin.

Maintains the Suppleness of the Skin

The elasticity of the skin or its ability to stretch and bounce back into shape is chiefly because of the elastin fibres produced by the fibroblasts and the degradation of which impacts its suppleness significantly. Hydration keeps the elastin fibres regain their viscoelastic properties and increases their quantity to maintain the skin's suppleness.

In addition to drinking sufficient water, some of the other methods in which you can keep the skin hydrated are

How to Keep Your Skin Hydrated?

Using a Sunscreen

Sunscreens contain organic compounds that catalyze chemical reactions on exposure to sunlight and transform UV rays into heat that are released from the skin instead of penetrating inside.

Through a Humidifier

Humidifiers generate nano-sized water particles that reduce trans epidermal water loss, improve the skin barrier function and do a great job of overall hydration of the skin.

Avoiding Extreme Temperatures

Extreme hot and cold temperatures damage the protective skin barrier and cause the skin to lose its hydrating properties. Avoiding extreme hot and cold temperatures of the atmosphere or water is vital in preserving the skin barrier and keeping the skin sufficiently hydrated.

Minimizing Caffeine Intake

Caffeine is a diuretic, i.e. use of caffeine leads to frequent urination that, over time, dehydrates the skin. Additionally, caffeine intake reduces collagen synthesis in the skin cells leading to wrinkles and fine lines.

Getting Sufficient Sleep

Studies have shown that people sleeping seven to nine hours a night have moisturized skin that protects and heals itself better from external pathogens than those who get 5 hours or less sleep nightly. In addition to hydration benefits, adequate sleep helps in better collagen production for suppleness and elasticity.

By Giving up Alcohol and Nicotine

Alcohol is an oxidizing agent that dehydrates the skin, impairs collagen production and stops skin repair mechanisms. Nicotine is a diuretic which can cause irreversible damage to the skin's hydrating mechanisms and give rise to dull, aged-looking skin.

Eating a Diet Rich in Fatty Acids

Fatty acids like Omega-3s and Omega-6s are building blocks of healthy cell membranes that regulate the skin's natural oil barrier and keep it hydrated, supple and younger-looking. Cucumbers, coconut, avocados, leafy greens and nuts/seeds are some of the few essential fatty acid-rich foods for skin hydrating.

Things to Avoid for Preventing Dehydration of Skin Cells

Some of the things that you should avoid skin dehydration are

  • Avoid a diet high in sugar and processed foods as it can lead to glycation, reduce collagen turnover, and reduce its ability to interact with surrounding cells and proteins.

  • Avoid harsh skin care products that can strip the skin of its moisture content and opt for gentle products that will keep it moisturized

  • Avoid over-exfoliating the skin

  • Avoid prolonged exposure to air conditioning.


The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 report advises a minimum of 3.7 L/day for men and 2.7L for women between the ages of 19-30 to maintain the body's water balance. The European Food Safety Authority indicates a dietary reference value of 2.5L/day for men and 2.0L/day for women for the body's healthy functioning. Water intake is the best way of hydrating your way to healthy skin. In addition, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and following other skin hydrating regimens can ensure blemish-free, acne-rid skin that improves your appearance and self-esteem.