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Dry vs Deyhdrated Skin

by Jiyubox Team |

One of my biggest skincare concerns is congestion. Those little under the skin bumps have been driving me nuts! I’ve tried both chemical exfoliants (AHA’s and BHA’s) and physical exfoliators, and nothing has worked. My skin is naturally combination and I thought if I dry out my skin I could reduce the sebum production which means no congestion? WRONG. Lo and behold, one can have dehydrated and oily skin at the same time. You might be thinking, doesn’t dehydrated mean dry? How could you possibly have dry and oily skin at the same time?

Turns out there’s a difference between dry and dehydrated skin! When I first found out about this I started to question my whole skincare routine, so let's break it down.


Dryness usually refers to a skin type and tends to be uncomfortable due to itching and flaking. Individuals with dry skin lack natural oils (also called sebum) because the skin produces less sebum than normal skin. This means the skin cannot retain the moisture it needs and can lead to the skin looking very rough and well… dry!

Dry Skin Characteristics:

  • Feels rough
  • Appears dry
  • Can be flaky

How to Treat?

For dry skin, it is important to keep the top layer of the skin moisturized since the skin naturally lacks sebum production. Moisturizing will help trap moisture in the skin all while simultaneously rebuilding the skin barrier.


On the other hand, dehydrated skin tends to look very dull and feels tight even after moisturizing! Dehydration often refers to a skin condition rather than a skin type. This means the skin does not retain enough water and can happen to anyone, regardless of skin type. 

Dehydrated Skin Characteristics:

  • Looks dull
  • Feels tight
  • Lots of congestion
  • Redness
  • Inflammation 

How to Treat?

For dehydrated skin, incorporating a hydrating serum that contains active ingredients can help create a protective skin barrier to retain hydration. Serums work to repair the damages caused by dehydration and environmental factors. 

About the Author:

Jenny is a fourth-year marketing student at the University of British Columbia. She is an advocate for clean beauty and loves all things skincare related. She is constantly looking to expand her knowledge and learn new skills in the industry.

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