Asian girl in a white robe splashing her face with water.

Contrary to popular belief, skin dehydration is as common in hot climates as cold ones. Sweating, exposure to heat, not drinking enough water, and freezing air-conditioning temperatures can contribute to parched skin. As usual, TikTok comes to the rescue with “skin flooding,” a trend that has resonated with many beauty enthusiasts – and not just because influencers are doing it.

What Is Skin Flooding?

As the term implies, skin flooding involves flooding the skin with hydration. You might think you’re already doing this, with products containing already in your beauty arsenal. However, this concept takes it a step further by ensuring two things: first, that you’re applying your products in the correct sequence, and second, that you’re dousing your skin every step of the way. 

It's one of the more low-risk, high-reward TikTok trends of late, hence its popularity across various demographics, including dermatologists. The best part is you probably won’t need to buy anything new to practice it. Everything you’ll need to flood your skin is already on your bathroom counter.

How to Practice Skin Flooding at Home

All skin types can benefit from skin flooding, although it works its wonders best on . You know your skin is dehydrated if it looks dull, dry, tight, and unnecessarily wrinkly. But even if it just feels a little off for the day, go ahead and give this ultra-hydrating regimen a try.

Step 1: Cleanse your skin with a gentle facial wash.

The keyword here is “gentle.” If you’re currently using a cleanser that makes your skin feel squeaky clean, it’s probably stripping it of natural moisture. Choose a mild, alcohol- and fragrance-free formula with a . According to a , low-pH cleansers can help reduce inflammation and protect the skin barrier.

Step 2: Spritz on a face mist.

After cleansing, pat your skin with a microfiber towel but keep it slightly damp. Then, spray a thermal face mist (or any kind, really) all over your face and neck. These usually have soothing ingredients like , and humectants like hyaluronic acid to help draw water from the atmosphere and into the skin.

If your skin is dehydrated, you want water to flood it from all sources, not just from within. But here’s a caveat: hyaluronic acid cannot magically create moisture from dry air, so help it out by using a humidifier in an air-conditioned room.

Step 3: Apply a hyaluronic acid serum.

To help your skin absorb and retain even more water, slather on a generous amount of hyaluronic acid serum on your face and neck. Do this while your skin is still glistening from the face mist. You can stop here and proceed to the next step, or you could introduce a targeted serum with a non-stripping active ingredient like .

Try POND'S Bright Miracle Ultimate Clarity Day Serum, which brightens the skin while strengthening its natural barrier with its hero ingredient, niasorcinol.

Step 4: Seal with a barrier-protecting moisturizer.

Seal all that hydration with a moisturizer. Formulas like lotion or cream work best for skin flooding since you want your products to gradually thicken with each step. Moisturizers with niacinamide, peptides, and can help strengthen and protect the which is responsible for holding water in. 

Try adding POND'S Bright Miracle Day Cream to your routine. It keeps the skin hydrated while boosting radiance.

Step 5: Top with broad-spectrum sunscreen.

Finally, don’t forget to top everything with sunscreen (at least ) if you’re skin flooding during the day. Unprotected sun exposure is a major contributor to skin dehydration since it depletes your water reserves and weakens your natural barrier. It can also lead to premature skin aging, which manifests as dryness, hyperpigmentation, and .

Skin flooding is an effective, feel-good way to revitalize dehydrated skin, so why not give it a shot? It gives you an instant glow (and a smooth makeup base), but you may need to make it a habit to really address dehydration. Skip it if your skin is cracked or extremely flaky and consult your doctor instead.