How To Figure Out Your Skin Type

Every individual has a unique skin type, meaning that what works for one person may not work for another. This is because we all have different needs when it comes to skincare. It's important to understand your skin type so that you can choose products that will benefit your skin specifically. There are five main skin types to consider: 

Sensitive Skin

Do you find that your skin reacts to changes in your environment? This may indicate that you have sensitive skin. Whether it's stress, exposure to pets, or weather changes, sensitive skin is more likely to react. 

The effectiveness of your skin care products depends on your skin's sensitivity levels. Using the wrong products can sometimes lead to a burning or stinging sensation. Skin sensitivity can manifest as redness, itching, dryness, or burning, and may even cause flaky patches. Sensitive skin is increasingly common, so here are some useful tips for managing it effectively. 

  • To prevent irritation, opt for lukewarm water over hot showers.

  • Choose skin care products without added fragrances.

  • Swap out perfumes for essential oils.

  • Opt for gentle, fragrance-free laundry detergents.

  • Patch test new skincare products before using them.

  • Consider using eco-friendly cleaning supplies.

  • Moisturize after bathing. 

Dry Skin

Dry skin may not be a severe ailment, but it can cause discomfort by making the skin feel tight. It can lead to patchy flaking and almost invisible pores, as well as premature wrinkles. Dry skin occurs when there are fewer oil-producing glands than usual, resulting in a lack of moisture retention. 

Tips for dry skin:

  • Limit your time in the bath or shower to 10 minutes or less. Avoid using hot water. Use enough soap to remove dirt, but not enough to result in a thick lather. Dry your skin gently and apply moisturizer when dry.

  • Apply moisturizer after washing your face or hands, while your skin is slightly damp. The reason this is so important is moisturizer works by trapping already existing moisture in your skin. The water evaporating on your skin tends to dry it out.

  • Make sure to use skin care products that are formulated for dry skin. This means they should not contain a fragrance.

  • Make sure to use hypoallergenic laundry detergents.

  • Exfoliate your skin at least once a week. The reason this is important, with a build-up of dead skin, our skin is not able to absorb moisturizers effectively.

Combination Skin

Do you have dry and rough patches on some areas of your skin, while others are oily? If that's the case, you may have combination skin. Treating either dry or oily skin is usually straightforward, but dealing with combination skin can be challenging. Typically, certain parts of our faces are oilier than others, such as the t-zone (including the chin, nose, and forehead) where oil-producing glands are more concentrated. Conversely, the areas around the eyes and cheeks may appear drier compared to the rest of the face. 

Tips For Combination Skin:

  • Use a mild facial cleanser twice a day to wash away impurities, excess oils and dirt. The cleanser you use should clean your t-zone without drying out your cheeks and areas around your eyes.

  • It is important to exfoliate your skin at least twice a week, making sure to use a product that is formulated for all skin types. That way it will work equally well on the oily areas and the dry areas of your skin.

  • Use an oil-free moisturizer.

  • Use blotting paper to remove excess oil during your day.

  • Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or above.

Oily Skin

Is your skin consistently shiny? Are you constantly using blotting sheets only to find that your skin is still oily? Does your makeup seem to slide off your face easily? The reason for these issues is simple. Each pore on our skin contains a gland that produces oil called sebum. This oil is important for keeping our skin healthy by providing lubrication and protection against dryness. When the oil glands are working properly, they help remove dead skin cells and irritants.

If you have oily skin, it means that your sebaceous glands are producing too much sebum. Unfortunately, this can lead to breakouts as the excess oil combines with dead skin cells, leading to blocked pores. The upside of having oily skin is that it is better at retaining moisture, which can prevent wrinkles later in life.

The key to managing oily skin is to find a balance between your skin's natural moisture and excess oil production. 

Tips For Oily Skin:

  • Always use oil-free or noncomedogenic skin care products.

  • Make sure to wash your face at least twice a day. Make sure not to wash too vigorously as that might irritate your skin.

  • To prevent your skin from increasing its oil production due to irritation, use a gentle foaming face wash.

  • Although you might want to decrease your skin’s oil production, it is still important to moisturize every day.

  • Use blotting paper to absorb excess oil. Make sure not to rub your face with the paper as this will spread the oil to other areas of your face.

  • Use water-based makeup.

Mature Skin

As we age, our skin starts to show the signs of time passing and our life experiences. Every blemish and wrinkle tells a story of our journey. The metabolism of our skin cells slows down over time, making it harder for our skin to heal and become less elastic. Dehydration and other factors can contribute to this, leading to a loss of freshness and consistency in our skin. Dark spots may also start to appear, creating a more fragile and wrinkled appearance. 

Tips for mature skin:

  • Wear sunscreen daily. This is one of the most important tips that applies equally to maturing skin as it does to youthful skin. Nothing damages your skin more than sun exposure. A good sunscreen will help you avoid wrinkling and brown spots.  When choosing a sunscreen, make sure to choose one that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Make sure to use it even on cloudy days.

  • Since mature skin tends to be dry, make sure to moisturize your skin daily. Avoid using hot water as water that is too hot will strip oil from your skin. Dry skin tends to be flaky, so make sure to exfoliate weekly. Use products designed for mature skin.

  • Because skin changes over time, make sure that your favourite skin care products that you used in your youth are still working for you now.