If the first rule of all is “do no harm” – the second must be to keep skin topped up with the moisture it needs to stay plumped and glowing. Drier skin wrinkles more quickly and will look older than it should unless you keep it hydrated.
So if you are finding your skin drier than it used to be – here’s my recommendations from some of the best hydrating creams around.
What is hydrating cream?
First of all though – just what is a hydrating cream, why should you use one and is it the same as an anti aging moisturizer?
Using a skin cream or face moisturizer on a daily basis is essential as a first step in helping your face look younger. Nothing else you do to your skin will have much impact if you don’t keep it moisturized.
Hydrating creams are designed to do one thing properly – deliver moisture to your skin. According to a recent study - just moisturizing your skin will smooth out wrinkles and prevent further wrinkles forming – to a certain degree at least.
Anti aging creams on the other hand claim to go further than just adding moisture. They come with additional ingredients like retinoids, GABA or peptides – and it is these ingredients that the manufacturers claim will make your skin look much younger than just using a simple face moisturizer on its own.
The difficulty is that whilst a lot of skin care manufacturers make anti aging claims for their products – not many of them have set out to show that they work more effectively than just keeping skin hydrated with a basic face cream.
So – if you distrust the claims made or don’t want to follow the marketing hype – sticking with a hydrating cream is a good way to go. You can of course just grab any reasonably priced cream off the shelf and use that – you will no doubt get a level of skin hydration and some anti wrinkle effect.
Choose a long lasting hydrating cream
If you really want to do something about your wrinkles – not just any old moisturizer will do.
The best hydrating face cream should give you long lasting hydration without the need to continually reapply it through the day. Remember you should only need to apply your moisture cream at the most twice – at the beginning and end of the day.
If you find your skin gets dry during the day or feels tight or uncomfortable a few hours after applying cream then you definitely need something more powerful.
Many of us with normal to combination skin can use the same skin cream for years and then suddenly find that it magically seems to sink in and disappear without trace.
Ingredients deliver continual moisture
Nowadays a powerful skin hydrating cream doesn’t have to be heavy or oily - in fact the reverse is true. The best creams work their magic through careful formulation rather than an excess of oil or grease!
A long lasting cream will have ingredients like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, petrolatum or dimethicone which ensure continual delivery of moisture to your skin.
The best creams are lightweight and absorb easily without leaving a greasy film or clogging pores.Some moisture creams have added ingredients as well – or broad spectrum sunscreens if you want that – but it’s not essential.
As a first step to youthful skin it’s the moisture that matters most.
Best hydrating creams 2012
Not surprisingly there are a lot of good products out there – so here’s my recommendations from the best around:
1. Replenish Hydrating Cream by MD Forte - maintains constant levels of moisture throughout the day and can be used also at night. A great cream for all skin types with a lot of positive reviews
2. Phytomer Hydracontinue Instant Moisture Cream- lovely cream for all skin types. Prevents moisture loss and delivers deep and long lasting hydration. Antioxidants protect skin from further environmental damage.
3. Max All Day Moisture Defense Cream by Peter Thomas Roth – rich, non-oily day cream for every skin type which provides constant level of hydration and a broad spectrum sunscreen. Not reviewed yet on Amazon but it is a great brand.
4. Murad Hydro Dynamic Ultimate Moisture - a luxurious cream delivering high levels of hydration over a long period. According to Dr Murad the key to preventing skin aging is to get moisture into the skin and keep it there. That means a good diet and lifestyle as well as great skin care. If you are going to try just one hydrating cream then this would be my choice.
5. Anthelios SX by La Roche-Posay – an exceptional hydrating cream and sunscreen combined which has something of a cult following! Guaranteed hydration for 24 hours and the broadest sun protection possible.
6. Sheer Moisture SPF 15 by Dermalogica - a simple lightweight non-oily cream which delivers long lasting moisture, SPF protection and a little color – all for a good price – what’s not to like?
All these products will deliver moisture over a long period from one application – essential for mature skin. Overall my choice would be the superb Murad Hydro Dynamic Ultimate Moisture with the MD Forte Replenish Hydrating Cream a close second.
But whatever you go for – with regular application of a well chosen hydrating cream you should have smoother, younger looking skin with the minimum of fuss and bother and with very little damage to your wallet.