Skincare is the foundation of our beauty routines. We spend a lot of time, and money caring for our skin, doing everything we can to keeping youthful, glowing and clear of blemishes. There are so many skin care products on the market that making a choice can often be overwhelming. Everyone’s skin is different and has different needs. Defining what type of skin we have is essential for proper care as it allows us to choose the most appropriate products for our unique needs and narrow those choices down.
Get the best skin you've ever had by getting to know it!
Skin is typically described in two ways: by its type, and by its condition. Skin type may change over time and typically includes normal, dry, oily or combination skin. The condition of the skin is often linked to environment and can be temporary or permanent. It may be sensitive, dehydrated, or display fine lines, wrinkles or enlarged pores. Skin condition can also describe chronic conditions such as rosacea, eczema, psoriasis and more. These conditions often require special treatments and products, often under the guidance of skin care professional.
What is Your Skin Type?
Not sure of your skin type? Try this, wash your face with your usual cleanser, pat it dry. Don't apply any serums, moisturizers, sunscreen or makeup. Wait for about two hours, then check how your skin is feeling.
- If your skin is not greasy or tight and feels comfortable, you may have NORMAL skin.
- If your skin is tight, flaky, or uncomfortable, you may have DRY skin.
- If your skin is oily or shiny all over, you may have OILY skin.
- If your skin is oily in some places, tight in others, you may have COMBINATION skin.
There are literally millions of skincare products on the market today, which makes choosing the right products overwhelming enough. Over time our skin’s type and condition may change due to aging, environment, lifestyle or hormonal changes. Building a routine for your specific skin type and using products formulated for your skin’s needs a great way to keep skin healthy.
Normal skin is balanced; not too oily, or too dry. The skin creates just enough sebum to keep it moisturized, so it is not tight and feels soft to the touch. Normal skin isn’t prone to regular breakouts but can change over time due to aging, environment and external factors such as smoking, excessive alcohol use or poor diet. It’s very tolerant of different products.
Recommended skincare regimen: A gentle cleanser followed by a light moisturizer with sunscreen is great for normal skin.
Dry skin is the result of low sebum production, meaning the skin doesn’t produce enough of its own natural oils. Sebum is vital to the health of the skin by keeping it supple and hydrated. Without enough oil, your skin can become dry and tight; it may crack or flake. When exposed to drying environments, the skin may become inflamed, itchy or sensitive. This can increase fine lines and wrinkles. Dry skin may be caused or worsened by drying weather such as wind, sun, cold, hot baths and showers as well as ingredients in soaps, cosmetics or cleaning agents.
Recommended skincare regimen: To care for dry skin look for mild, gentle soaps or cleansers and avoid anything with fragrance. Apply a rich moisturizer right after cleansing. Ointments and creams may work better than lotions.
In contrast to dry skin, oily skin is a result of overactive sebaceous glands; the skin is producing more oil than it needs. While it's great that your skin is well hydrated, this can also contribute to clogged pores and acne.
Oily skin is more common in youth but can occur throughout life. It may produce enlarged pores, blackheads, spots or other blemishes. Oiliness can change and be caused by hormonal imbalances, stress, exposure to heat or too much humidity and other factors.
Recommended skincare regimen: To care for oily skin use light, gentle cleansers and water-based products to regulate sebum. It may be tempting, but don’t overwash. Using scrubbing cleansers and washing too often causes the skin to get irritated and sensitive. Just because oily skin is overhydrated doesn’t mean you should skip the moisturizer. A lightweight water-based lotion or a light serum will be helpful as products with thinner textures are less likely to clog pores or worsen breakouts.
Combination skin over produces sebum in some places, while under-producing the natural oils in others. Overactive sebaceous glands make the nose, chin, and forehead oily, shiny and prone to breakouts, while the cheeks, mouth and eye areas may be dry and tight. This can change according to the season and hormonal fluctuations.
Recommended skincare regimen: Caring for combination skin can be a challenge and involve treating both types differently. You may need a lighter moisturizer for the oilier areas, and a richer cream on the drier areas.
Other Ways to Keep Skin Healthy, Regardless of Type.
- Consult a dermatologist. There's no better place to get the best advice about your skin and what it needs than from a skin expert. A dermatologist can not only suggest prescriptions for problematic conditions, but they can also point you in the right direction for affordable, mass brand products that work for your skin type.
- Find a great broad-spectrum sunscreen. There is no bigger threat to the skin than UV rays. Sunscreen will help your skin stay protected and youthful, no matter your skin tone, skin type or condition.
- Drink a lot of water. No matter what skin type you have, hydration from the inside out is key. Hydrated skin is bright, healthy and supple.
- Enjoy a balanced diet. Poor nutrition can have a damaging effect on the skin. Foods high in Omega 3 fatty acids help strengthen skin while Vitamin C helps boost collagen. Diets low in dairy tend to result in fewer breakouts as hormones found in milk and cheese affect sebum production. You could buy the best lotions, cleansers and serums this world can provide - if you don't take care of your insides, you'll see it on the outside.
- Skip the smokes. Cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide, which displaces the oxygen in your skin. Nicotine reduces blood flow leaving skin dry. Smoking also depletes many nutrients, including vitamin C, which helps protect and repair skin damage. In other words, smoking makes you age faster.
While we all may fall into one of these categories of skin type, it doesn’t mean the same products will be beneficial for us. It’s okay to mix and match brands and try different things until you find what works best for you. Finding the right products that work for you will help your skin look and feel it’s very best while keeping it healthy and glowing.
The team at BioElementis does the research to keep you informed about the latest in skincare and the science behind how it works. Do you have questions? We'll find the answers! Leave us a comment or hit us up on our social media channels!