Although proper hydration is important for your overall health, it's not clear whether drinking extra water affects skin hydration in healthy people.
Skin is made up of three layers — the outer layer (epidermis), the underlying skin (dermis) and the subcutaneous fat tissue. If the outermost layer of the epidermis doesn't contain enough water, skin will lose elasticity and feel rough. Despite this connection, however, there's a lack of research showing that drinking extra water has any impact on skin hydration or appearance.
If you're looking to maintain hydrated skin, there are steps you can take, including:
- Avoid exposure to dry air
- Avoid prolonged contact with hot or chlorinated water
- Use a gentle cleanser instead of soap
- Avoid using skin care products that contain alcohol
- Moisturize immediately after a bath or shower and regularly throughout the day
- Use a humidifier
- Wear a scarf and gloves when going out in cold weather
If you're concerned about dry skin, contact your health care provider or a dermatologist.
Dec. 14, 2012
See more Expert Answers
- Popkin BM, et al. Water, hydration and health. Nutrition Reviews. 2010;68:439.
- Wolf R, et al. Nutrition and water: Drinking eight glasses of water a day ensures proper skin hydration-myth or reality? Clinics in Dermatology. 2010;28:380.
- Yuregir H, et al. Food for the skin. Nutrition Bulletin. 2009;34:383.
- Negoianu D, et al. Just add water. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. 2008;19:1041.
- Dry skin: Who gets and causes. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/skin-conditions/dermatology-a-to-z/dry-skin/who-gets-causes/dry-skin-who-gets-and-causes. Accessed Oct. 5, 2012.
- Dry skin: Tips for relieving. fAmerican Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/skin-conditions/dermatology-a-to-z/dry-skin/tips/dry-skin-tips-for-relieving. Accessed Oct. 5, 2012.
- Dry skin: Diagnosis, treatment and outcome. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/skin-conditions/dermatology-a-to-z/dry-skin/diagnosis-treatment/dry-skin-diagnosis-treatment-and-outcome. Accessed Oct. 5, 2012.