Sarah Balch for InStyle.com
Marianne Mychaskiw
Mar 27, 2015 @ 10:59 am

Whether you haven't been getting your required eight glasses of water a day, or aren't diligent with applying moisturizer, it's safe to say that our skin sometimes doesn't get the hydration it needs. It can be difficult to determine exactly how parched your complexion is, especially if you tend to be on the oily side, but the Kiehl's Dehydration Analyzer Tool gives a precise reading of your moisture levels in your skin with its innovative technology. InStyle.com Assistant Beauty Editor Marianne Mychaskiw paid a visit to the brand's flagship store in New York City to see how dehydrated her own skin was by testing the device. Read on to find out how it works!

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I thought I did a typically good job of keeping my skin in check over the winter, but since the radiator in my studio apartment does not know a happy medium between full-blast and completely off, I knew the sauna-esque temps probably did some damage. But to pinpoint the exact extent of it, I turned to the Kiehl's Dehydration Analyzer Tool---or DAT, because the device and I are now on that level.

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To track the water levels in your complexion, the DAT sends a gentle, undetectable electric current through your skin's top layers, and by measuring how fast the current bounces back to the tool, you're given a percentage number indicating how dehydrated you actually are. The quicker the current returns, the more water you have in your skin. I quickly found out that having oily skin doesn't always mean you're hydrated---dehydrated skin has less water, while dry skin has less oil, so you can struggle with a constantly-shiny complexion like mine and still lack water.

Sarah Balch for InStyle.com

To start the process, Chelsea Lanham, manager for Kiehl's customer experience, pressed two tabs up to my face to measure the amount of sebum and oil in my skin. After determining that I have an oily skin type, we went through my day and night skin care routine, concerns I wanted to address, and product formulas I tend to veer toward. She then picked up the DAT, and held it to my cheek for a few seconds until it came back with a reading of 28 percent. Readings from 0 to 30 percent indicate severely-dehydrated skin, 31 to 50 percent mark slight dehydration, while anything over 51 percent puts you in the clear. Based off of my product preferences and my need to address breakouts, even tone, and a Dorian Grey-esque stance on preventative anti-aging, Lanham then pulled the below lineup of recommendations for tackling each issue and gave me a crash-course in how to apply and layer the products.

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Sarah Balch for InStyle.com

The dynamic duo of the Calendula Deep Cleansing Face Wash ($29; kiehls.com) and Toner ($21; kiehls.com) would help in balancing oil, while the nourishing cocktail of the Hydro-Plumping Serum Concentrate and Midnight Recovery Concentrate ($58 and $46; kiehls.com) aid in restoring much-needed water to layers of skin underneath the surface.

Taking the Kiehl's Dehydration Analyzer Tool on a test-drive is completely free, even if you don't opt to shop any of the recommended products, and allows for easy access with the device currently posted up at the brand's stores nationwide and select department stores. Since your hydration levels can change almost as often as the weather does (here in New York, the weather has been doing a lot of that ...), it's recommended that you get an analysis every three to four months to track your progress. I definitely plan to go back closer to the summer to see if my skin is any less-dehydrated, and if my landlord ever plans to turn down the heat in my building, I'm pretty confident it will be.

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