Skin Types & Conditions: How To Tell Them Apart & How They Affect Your Skincare Choices
Updated: Oct 2, 2020
One of the most common questions that I get from clients, friends and family is "what should I be using for my skin"?
My answer? Treat the condition of your skin with your skin type in mind.
What do I mean by condition and type?
The condition of your skin is what you see happening to it that is different from its normal state. The normal state of your skin would be one of 5 types- dry, oily, normal, combination or sensitive.
Here's a good way to look at it: think of your skin as a car.
Every car has make and model, just like skin has a type. Cars have specific parts dependent on their make and model just as the skin has specific needs for its type. The condition of a car on the other hand could be new, used, damaged, etc, whereas the condition of the skin may be dehydrated, inflamed, breakout prone, aging, sun damaged, etc.
Here's where condition and type go together: if your car was in an accident, it might get damaged (condition) which would mean you might have to get a part replaced that would need to be specific for your car's model (type). Same goes for your skin. If you are out in the sun too long, your skin might get burned and become dehydrated. You should then treat your inflamed, dehydrated skin (with aloe vera for example) but also stick to the products that are right for your skin type for your daily needs (cleanser, toner, moisturizer, etc).
So what are the differences between the 5 different skin types and how can you tell which one relates to you?
Oily skin type: If you have to blot your skin half way through the day because it feels "greasy" or you tend to get really shiny skin at noon, then you would definitely be in the oily skin category.
Combination skin type: Some areas are oily/breakout prone (t-zone) but other areas may feel dry and in need of more moisture.
Dry skin type: Pores can be virtually invisible on a dry skin type, and it is not prone to breakouts but may feel like it needs a lot of moisture.
Sensitive skin type: The skin tends to be more reactive than most. This means that the skin tends to "flush" easily or react to product that may be a bit harsher, like a scrub or retinol product.
Normal skin type: Typically pretty well balanced. It is never overly dry or oily, although it can fluctuate from time to time and is not overly sensitive. Normal skin is like the "mercedes" of skin types, we all want it but very few of us get it.
Even though we may all have different skin types, we might have similar concerns, such as signs of aging. There are many anti-aging products out there on the market, but which one is right for you?
Well if you have dry, aging skin, you will likely want a richer cream (to address the dry skin type) with some age corrective benefits (for the aging concern). However if you have a combination/oily skin type with signs of aging, you will likely want a lighter moisturizer with some lifting and firming qualities. The reason for this is that if you have an oilier skin type, chances are you will not like the feeling of a heavy cream and your skin won't either because it simply does not need that extra moisture -unless of course, its dehydrated which is a whole other thing. To put it simply, dehydrated=lack of water, and dry=lack of oil.
When it comes to aging, dry vs oily skin types also age differently; drier skin may show signs of aging earlier as it is prone to fine lines and wrinkles. Oilier skin types have larger pores and are more breakout-prone but when it come to aging, the extra moisture helps ward off deep wrinkles from forming (I can already hear the sigh of relief!)
In any case, no matter what your skin type is, you should always consider its condition (or address the concern/or skin goal) when purchasing product. Why? Because treating dehydrated, oily skin may help prevent acne breakouts, since flaky skin and oil don't mix well, resulting in congestion (build up) and eventually inflammation (red bumps/pimples), just as an example of what you could prevent!
So the next time you are asking yourself what you should be using for your skin, remember these 3 simple words: Treat, Care, Glow. Treat the condition, Care for the type and you will get that Glow.
Have any questions or concerns or not sure where to start? Send me a message & let's connect!
Sending you 'glowing' vibes,