The most important step in caring for your skin comes in understanding your specific skin type and how it adapts to certain circumstances or seasonality. Your skin is your body’s largest organ, as complex and intelligent as your heart, lungs, liver and other vital organs. Using cleansers and treatments that are too harsh, even if they are recommended for excessive oiliness, may send the signal to your skin that more oil is actually needed. Conversely, applying moisturizers that are too thick or heavy can result in decreased natural oil production, resulting in even drier skin. Taking the time to learn your skin’s specific needs will help you to choose the right options that will balance skin resulting in a healthier, more radiant complexion.
Every person’s skin is unique, but there are a few common skin types that may help you to identify where your skin fits in the most. The three main skin types are commonly referred to as Oily, Normal/Combination and Dry.
Here are two easy ways to determine your skin type at home:
- The Bare-Faced Method
- The Blotting Sheet Method
The Bare-Faced Method:
Cleanse your face thoroughly with a mild cleanser and gently pat dry. Leave skin bare (and do not apply any additional moisturizers, serums or treatments). After 30 minutes, examine your cheeks, chin, nose and forehead for any shine. After another 30 minutes, evaluate whether your skin feels parched, especially if you smile or make any other facial expressions. If your skin feels tight, your skin is likely to dry. If there is noticeable shine on your nose and forehead, your skin is most likely normal/combination. If there is shine on your cheeks in addition to your forehead and nose, you most likely have oily skin.
The Blotting Sheet Method:
This method is much faster and often an excellent differentiator between oily and dry skin types. Gently pat a blotting paper on the different areas of your face. Hold the sheet up to the light to determine how much oil is visible. If the sheet picked up little to no oil, you most likely have dry skin. If the blotting sheet reveals oil from the forehead and nose areas, your skin is normal/combination. Finally, if the blotting paper is saturated with oil, it is extremely likely that you have oily skin.