How Does Humidity Affect Your Skin?

a girl looking at a pimple on her face

How Does Humidity Affect Your Skin?

Humidity generally increases bacterial infections and can have issues with acne, rashes, skin, sweat glands, and other infections. For the ones who have oily skin, skin with acne or acne-prone, combination skin, extra humidity can definitely be a big problem to the health of the skin. One can fight all these problems by learning how to make your skin better by using natural or Ayurveda products.

What is humidity?

Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. If there is a lot of water vapor in the air, the humidity will be high. In humid weather, due to air moisture, skin pores open and it makes the skin collect oil, dirt, and foreign substances (allergens). Excessive humidity can result in skin breakouts, pimples, or eczema. Have you ever experienced skin changes when you visit a new place? Or when there is a seasonal change? Usually, it’s because of weather changes (changes in levels of humidity). Humidity is the number of water droplets available in the air. Our skin requires a balance of dry and humid settings. Extra humidity or little humidity can be detrimental to your skin. If you live in dry places, i.e. at low levels of humidity, the skin will become dry, and if you live in areas of high humidity, the skin will have acne and rashes.

What is relative humidity?

The difference between the quantity of moisture or water vapour in the air and the maximum amount that the air can contain at a given temperature is known as relative humidity. A percentage is used to represent it. The relative humidity measures how near saturation with water vapour the air is. Greater relative humidity denotes more moisture in the air, whilst lower relative humidity denotes drier air.

How humidity affect your skin?

The following are the affects of humidity on your skin:

Effects of High Humidity

  • Extreme Sweating: 
  • Summer usually becomes unbearable due to humidity. If the humidity is high, even the normal temperature makes it feel too hot. This results in too much sweating, this sweat usually evaporates but the moisture remains on the skin, which makes it worse and might result in skin infections

  • Acne: 
  • As mentioned above, extreme sweating causes skin issues, and one of them is acne/ pimples. Skin pores are clogged due to sweating which results in painful bumps. Acne then causes itching and rashes

  • Heat Rashes:  
  • Due to extreme heat and sweating, heat rashes are developed on the skin. These start when sweat ducts can’t open due to the perspiration process. This results in small red bumps and makes those rashes itchy and uncomfortable.

    Effects of Low Humidity

  • Respiratory Issues: 
  • Lower humidity not only lowers the moisture level on the skin but also lowers the mucosal membrane moisture level. This membrane is found in the lungs nose, mouth, and sinuses.

  • Eczema: 
  • It’s a skin condition that occurs when there are genetic issues, environmental factors, or foreign substances (allergens) on the skin. The skin becomes red, and itchy, and causes irritation. With eczema, one also faces emotional breakouts.

  • Dry Skin:
  •  When the air has lower moisture or has low humidity, moisture is also lost from your skin via evaporation. It is called transepidermal water loss. This causes a reduction in the required moisture level and skin health deteriorates. Low humidity also makes the skin lose natural oils, which makes the skin drier and flaky. If the situations are severe, it can also make the skin crack & bleed.

    Ideal humidity for human skin

    Human skin normally prefers a humidity range of 40% to 60%. The air is pleasant for the skin in this range since it is neither too dry nor too humid. When the humidity is excessively low, such as in the winter or in arid locations, the skin may become dry, flaky, and irritated. High humidity, on the other hand, may irritate skin, encourage excessive perspiration, and even aggravate skin disorders like acne. The appropriate range for humidity balance may be maintained to keep the skin moisturised and healthy.

    How you can treat your skin from humidity?

    By following the below guidelines you can treat your skin from humidity:

    1. Clean regularly
    2. Don’t use cosmetics
    3. Wear sunscreen
    4. Remove excess oil
    5. Use chemical free moisturizer
    6. Exfoliate regularly
    7. Consult dermatologist on a regular basis

    Take Away

    As explained above, both low humidity and high humidity are bad for skin health. Skin prefers a level of humidity that is kind of balanced and lies within that balance range. Excessive humidity can result in extreme sweating, acne, pimples, bacterial infections, rashes, redness, and skin breakouts while lower humidity can result in dry skin, allergies, and respiratory problems. Moreover, there could be other health concerns as well like asthma, frizzy hair, heatstroke, and so on. Ideal humidity can be different for different persons but usually stands between 30 and 50 percent according to health experts and dermatologists.


    Is humidity bad for your skin?

    Yes, humid environments can be bad for your skin, can cause bacterial infections and other skin infections too.

    Should I use moisturizer in humid weather?

    Yes, whatever the place or weather condition you live, it is always advisable to use moisturizer.

    Which weather is best for glowing skin?

    Cold weather is the best weather for glowing skin, it suppress pigmentation and help brighten skin.


    What to know about dry skin in winter? By Medical News Today, Mar 16, 2021.

    Humidity. By Wikipedia.

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