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Identify Your Skin Type Before Choosing Skincare Products

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Beauty Spotlight: Understanding Our Skincare Needs

By now, we’ve learned that self-care is a critical step towards looking and feeling beautiful; and one of the most lasting (and natural!) ways to do so is to nurture healthy, glowing skin 😊

 But, how can we achieve this look when we don’t know what works best for our unique skin type? Understanding our skin type arms us with the knowledge to effectively target our personal skincare needs, achieving both that outer glow and inner confidence.

 Our skincare needs are as unique as our personalities, and the first step to addressing them is figuring what type of skin we have:

OILY SKIN

Description: Those with of us with oily skin will notice a shine on our faces at the end of the day. Typically, this means we have active oil glands that naturally generate a greater amount of sebum. What’s that? Sebum is an oily substance that helps keep your skin soft and often super hydrated! Note that sebum production may fluctuate, as it's influenced by our hormone levels. So, as our hormone levels go up and down, so too does our sebum production, which may lead to changes in oiliness.

Typical Pore Size: Pores lean on the larger size. This is because the skin’s pores expand when more oil is produced and therefore become more visible. Another helpful identification tip: if those of us with oily skin wear makeup, we’ll usually find that it slides off easily by the end of the day.

Recommendation: It is important to keep our skin healthy and hydrated even if its naturally oily. While it’s tempting to skip out on moisturizing as a way to combat oily skin, we should remember that oil reduces wrinkles, fine lines, and signs of aging. Of course, we all want to avoid acne, but shirking on moisturizing leads to even more oil, because the resulting dryness hyper-activates our glands (to address the dryness). This leads to the excessive shine we were trying to solve for in the first place! In other words, not using a moisturizer can lead to oilier skin. Wild, right? Our Softening Hydra-Whip is great option for those of us with oily skin as it hydrates deeply without making skin feel overwhelmed or leaving a greasy finish.

DRY SKIN

Description: Those of us with dry skin can feel like our face is tight. We sometimes see rough patches emerge that are prone to flaking. Dry skin is less subject to whiteheads and acne (yay!) but can be more vulnerable to wrinkling and the appearance of fine lines. Our skin may crack and peel but worry not, because that’s what skincare routines are here for.

Typical Pore Size: Pores are so small / practically non-existent! At times the skin appears dull and proper hydration is the best way to achieve that luminous, healthy glow we’re after.

Recommendation: A common misconception about dry skin is that the solution is to drink more water because dry skin is “dehydrated”. Drinking enough water is important for our health for sure! But, chugging 10 glasses of water per day will do little on its own for our dry skin. The key is to invest in a quality moisturizer and apply it frequently. Be careful, as people with dry skin are often more susceptible to harsh cleansers and beauty products, so be sure to stick to gentle, all-natural products. Note: before adding a new moisturizer to your regimen, patch test to ensure that its safe and effective for you!

COMBINATION SKIN

Description: Combination skin is exactly what it sounds like. If we have combination skin, we'd present two or more different skin types. (Fun fact: it’s the most common). Note: while we might see this referred to as the “normal” skin type by several brands, we hesitate to adopt that term because it implies oily and dry skin are abnormal. This is not the case! “Normal” and “common” are distinct terms, and no one should feel as though they have “abnormal” skin or skincare needs!

If you’re unsure of your skin type, you may be able to relate to this one. (Hint: even if you resonated with the oily skin description you may have combination skin. Many of us confuse the two types).

Typical Pore Size: Those of us with combination skin usually experience an oily T-zone (the forehead nose and chin) which has a higher oil gland activity, and dry cheeks. Though this is not always the case! Typically, this means that pore sizes vary depending on where we look on our faces.

Recommendation: If we have combination skin, we might consider using different kinds of skincare products for different parts of our face. Combination skin sometimes warrants a multi-dimensional skincare routine. But, instead of rushing out and ordering 2 of everything, we should first understand how to re-purpose the products we already have, or find products that can be leveraged in more than one way! For example, looking at the Glow Activating Exfoliator, we can use it as a cleanser on a more regular basis, and then as a mask on just our T-zones twice a week. This enables us to have glowing skin without over-drying.

Now, it’s important to remember that skin type is based on both genetic predisposition and hormonal factors which change over time. This means that our skin type can adapt with age and as our hormone production fluctuates. We should make sure we are aware of our skin and continue to revisit our skincare needs over time. Our bodies change as we age, and our skin and skincare needs are no exception 😊

At the end of the day, we’re queens and there’s no one else quite like us. We need to figure out our unique needs and treat ourselves accordingly.

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9 comments

  • Radha on

    thank you for making this article so relatable! my skin used to be oilier when i was younger but now seems to be more of a combination type. this means i may have been using the wrong products/using products sub-optimally for my skin type. need to try the trick with the heavier t-zone exfoliation and lighter on the cheeks.

  • Kanya on

    OMG! Always thought I had dry skin but hesitated with that cuz my nose and forehead are not dry. Guess I actually have combination skin!!

  • Shreya P on

    Super good article, I thought I should skip the moisturizing step because of my extremely oily skin. But now I think I will buy a good moisturizer, since it appears like a worth-while investment. thank you!

  • nidhi1234 on

    LOVE this article, so so helpful!! also i literally thought combo skin meant ordering 2 of everything for different parts of your face. thanks for clarifying haha.

  • Naomi90 on

    i love the idea for the glow activating exfoliator! i have dry/combination skin, and using the exfoliator as a mask every night can dry it out. so i’ve been using it just as a cleanser every day, and as a mask once a week. works wonders :)


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