Having clear and healthy-looking skin is something we all aim for and is for some harder to achieve than others. I’m definitely one of the others. At some point during my teens my skin decided to massively mess around (yes, we’re talking acne and all that loveliness) and ever since it has insisted on strict care to be kept at bay. Sadly there are so super-product that works as a quick fix (despite what commercials may tell you). Thing is, the skin needs to be balanced and to do that you need to use good products that work against you skin issues and neutralize them. It’s all a bit scientific, really. But to find the products to improve your unbalanced skin you need to identify what type of skin you have to work with. Quite obvious, right?
After researching and reading about this for the past 4-5 years I feel like I’ve gained a fair amount of knowledge regarding skin types, skin care and products, so what kind of person would I be if I didn’t share it with you? It also genuinely pains me how people spend a fortune at the drugstore, but buy the wrong product and just mess the skin up even more. That’s why I’m going to take you through the very confusing and frustrating process of understanding your skin and finding the right products for you – step by step.
There are five main skin types: normal, oily, dry, combination and sensitive.
This is basically what everyone aims for. Normal skin is well balanced as well as appearing smooth, clear and healthy. It also has no oily or dry areas and few/none pronounced pores and lines. Av even skin tone and good elasticity is also a sign of having a normal skin type.
Also called problem skin. Your skin appears greasy and shiny due to your skin producing too much oil as well as large pores. Those with oily skin tend to have lots of blemishes, blackheads and spots, and the skin often appears plump because the dead cells do not shed as quickly.
Dry skin on the other hand, doesn’t produce enough oil which causes tight, flaky, fragile skin. The lack of oil also reduces the skin’s ability to act as a protective barrier meaning it’s much more vulnerable to UV radiation, pollution and weather conditions. Small pores are also a sign of dry skin.
(Raises hand up with sadness) Those with combination skin have both oily and dry areas – typically oily in the t-zone (forehead, nose and chin) and dry on the cheeks and around the eyes. This is probably the most tricky one as the different areas on your skin require different treatment.
(One again raises hand up, this time with defeat) This is the most fragile skin type. People with sensitive skin burn easily and is prone to redness and irritation when using products with harsh ingredients.
But what determine what kind of skin type we have?
There’s a lot of factors that contribute to having a certain skin type, the biggest contributor being heredity. By this I mean biological predisposition, genes, to a particular type of skin. Still, climate and weather changes, what you eat (never underestimate how what you eat affect your body), hormonal change (oh those teen years…), allergies, pregnancy, health problems, medications, smoking and last but definitely not least sun exposure plays a part in how your skin appears. Don’t listen to those saying sun dries out your spots. It’s like peeing on yourself because you’re cold (excuse the phrase) – it’ll do the job for a short moment, but on a long-term basis it doesn’t exactly do you any favors. The condition of your skin will actually be a lot worse, so always use at least SPF 30 when exposing the skin to sunlight.
Hopefully this makes you a bit wiser. And of course, if you have any questions or want any further guidance – comment and I’m more than happy to help!
I’ll post the next post in the series, How to Treat Your Skin Type, around the same time next week.
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