How Dry Skin Can Lead To Bumpy Texture + What To Do About It
Skin texture is a broad term, encompassing everything from acne scars to active breakouts to even dryness. One of the most common signs is tiny bumps that don't quite look like inflamed pimples but aren't necessarily blackheads, either.
This can be a frustrating skin situation to deal with, and it's tempting to jump straight to exfoliation and every retinol product you have on hand, but oftentimes that will only result in more irritation, and thus, more uneven texture. Instead, look to this unexpected remedy.
How dehydrated skin can cause skin texture.
The surprising culprit: dehydrated and overworked skin. See, when you start using a new active skin care product, whether that means a chemical exfoliant or a retinol, your skin may begin to dry out for the first few weeks.
Naturally, dry skin craves moisture. If you don't replenish it with a topical hydrator, then your skin can produce excess sebum to fill the gap.
Sebum is the sticky oil that clogs pores, which is most often what those tiny bumps represent. They may not turn into full-fledged inflamed pimples, but they do add texture to the skin and can be difficult to treat.
What's more, adding new products like retinol to the mix on a daily basis can cause inflammation in the skin, due to a damaged skin barrier. The hard part about treating these tiny bumps is that your skin may feel like it needs exfoliation, but it actually just needs a metaphorical glass of water.
"Certain products to calm the skin and decrease inflammation can help maintain a healthy skin barrier during the purging period," board-certified dermatologist Gabriella Vasile, D.O., FAAD, previously told mbg about this type of skin texture.
This logic applies to any time your skin is overworked, especially if you just started using a new active ingredient. So, rather than throwing more exfoliants at it, look for hydrating serums and moisturizers with the following ingredients:
- Hyaluronic acid
- Jojoba oil
- Rosehip seed oil
- Aloe vera
- Squalene oil
If you're dealing with skin texture, proceed with caution. These tiny bumps could actually be caused by dryness and should be treated with hydrating ingredients rather than harsh actives. Still not sure what's causing your texture? This guide will help you narrow it down.
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends, holistic skincare approaches, must-have makeup products, and inclusivity in the beauty industry. She currently lives in New York City.