Could Moisturiser Be Harmful To Your Skin?

boxes and bottles of face creams and face serums

Working in the beauty industry, I love moisturiser as much as the next person, perhaps even more so but could my twice daily habit of slapping on expensive anti-aging creams actually be doing more harm than good?

Yes, according to Cosmetic Dermatologist Dr Rachael Eckel who says that ‘Cosmetic moisturisers are lacking in science and product efficacy. When used blindly and inappropriately, moisturizers are injurious to the skin. They suppress cellular function leading to a dull appearance, rough texture, skin thinning, sensitivity, dryness and dependence.’

Which basically means that although our moisturisers may appear to provide instant softening and plumping, what most of them are actually doing is sitting on the surface of the skin acting as a barrier. Shockingly, instead of providing deep hydration our creams are suffocating the skin and creating excess oils.

Some dermatologists claim that moisturiser is so effective, that skin forgets how to soften and stops producing ‘natural moisturizing factors’, blocking the skins natural repair mechanism. Meaning that when you stop using your moisturiser your skin will feel dry and uncomfortable.

Triple Microdermabrasion Face Polish by Exuviance
Triple Microdermabrasion Face Polish by Exuviance

If moisturiser isn’t the fountain of youth, what is? Apparently the key to youthful, soft skin is regular exfoliation to encourage cell renewal and produce more moisture (my number 1 facial exfoliator has to be Triple Microdermabrasion Face Polish by Exuviance), followed by a humectant serum or lotion by a Cosmaceutical (cosmetics with active ingredients purporting to have drug-like benefits) to work on a cellular lever rather than just the surface such as SkinCeuticals’ Hydrating B5.

Hydrating B5 by Skinceuticals
Hydrating B5 by Skinceuticals

But before you ditch the moisturiser for good, an eight-year study funded by skincare brand Olay and published in the British Journal of Dermatology showed that keeping skin hydrated kept wrinkles at bay. Dr Sian Morris, principal scientist for Olay, told the Mail Online: ‘In skin, two things decrease with age – hydration and the ability to create a barrier against the world. You have to support the skin by moisturising it.’

So will I be ditching my beloved moisturiser? Probably not but I will contiunue to incorporate regualer exfoliation in my regime and will try to use my moisturiser a little more sparingly.

Do you think your skincare regime could be doing more harm than good? Have your say below.