Simplified: skincare routine and the battle between hydration and moisture

How does your skin feel? Tap it! Is it well hydrated, does it feel moist, or is it slightly rough and dry? Probably you are using several skincare products to improve your skin health and looks, but did you ask yourself, if the effects you’re experiencing are what’s being promised on the product label and packaging?

Nowadays, skincare brands tend to make hundreds of statements about their product, their product packaging, their brand values, and the list goes on. However, what the end-user cares about is the quality, and the effect the newly purchased cream will have on their skin. We are sure that information overload creates confusion rather than answers your questions.

That’s why at ZEW for men, we decided to introduce a log series called – simplified, where we will cover a variety of topics with the main focus – the simplification of the subject. Let’s strip down all of the background noise and focus on your skin’s health!

Hydrating vs. moisturizing

Before we dive into reading a product ingredient list, let’s cover the basics of skincare: hydration vs. moisture. Skin hydration is a process during which the active ingredients are supposed to boost the water level in your skin. You can only boost hydration by drinking more water (and 2 liters a day are not enough!) or by adding  Glycerin, honey, and hyaluronic acid are great examples. As humectants, they absorb water from the air and bind it to the skin, which facilitates hydration. On the other hand, skin moisture is a process during which the water and hydrating properties are being sealed, so the skin can hold all water you’ve consumed within your skin. 

Source: Bee Naturals, 2012 

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There are too many companies with a wide variety of products that claim to do both – hydrate and moisturize at the same time. However, that is not possible without having the opportunity to layer ingredients. Often the wrong application leads to painful breakouts, skin that looks dull, too oily, or too dry, lacks elasticity, and is flaky. To avoid that we’d like to explain how to layer skincare products to maximize the benefits:

Cleanse: give your skin a thorough wash

Hydrate and boost: apply water - based products and acids

Nurture: take or apply your vitamins

Vitamin-based solutions, magnesium, and niacinamide suspensions are ingredients that neither hydrate nor boost moisture. Instead, they treat and improve certain skin condition.

Moisturize and lock: use oil-based products to achieve maximum benefit


To improve your skin health, you have to know the basics. Hydration vs. moisture and layering is the first thing you need to consider before purchasing a new skincare product. If you feel well hydrated and the skin feels elastic – consider locking that and helping the skin stay hydrated from within. If your skin is naturally quite oily, make sure to cleanse your skin thoroughly and provide it with hydrating products to prevent breakouts and rough skin. 

Stay dashing,

ZEW for men team

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