how to find your skin type

To begin this series of beauty related posts, I decided to start off with one of the primary subjects How to identify your skin type.

When your skin is looking good you don't feel much need to cover it up with makeup. Even if you just want to give it a nice pop of color you'll probably find yourself using way fewer products. Nonetheless, in order to achieve a good result, with or without makeup, you have to take care of your skin first! Think of it like having a fresh canvas for your painting, if you will.
Knowing your skin type is not only important because it allows you to choose the correct skincare products in order to achieve a well-balanced skin, but also to find the right kind of makeup for a better-looking finish.
Just a small disclaimer before we start. I am not a professional at skincare. All that you're about to read is based on my personal experience and from working in the skincare and makeup fields in the past. If you find something that you think it's incorrect, please do let me know! Also if you would like to see more of a subject that I didn't cover here, I would love to know as well!
OK, so let's jump right into it!

There are mainly four types of skin:

  • Dry
  • Oily
  • Normal
  • Combination
Dry skin usually shows very reduced pores, it can have a feeling of pulling and lack of elasticity and can easily show cracks and/or flakes in certain areas were the dryness appears more extreme.
Oily skin tends to shine very easily throughout the day and, because it normally has large pores, it's more prone to blackheads and pimples.
Normal skin doesn't show signs of shine caused by the over production of sebum nor it flakes or feels tight. It should feel naturally smooth and comfortable, with a good elasticity.
Combination skin - one of the most common, is categorized by having a mix between the dry/normal and oily skin. Usually, the T-zone, meaning the forehead, nose, and chin (It creates a T shape, get it?) will appear oily and the rest of the face normal or dry.

How do you identify your skin type?

What I find to be the easiest way is to just wash your face in the morning with water, gently tap it dry and just go on with your regular relaxed day. By relaxed I mean don't go jogging or do anything that will typically change your skin's appearance.
After more or less two hours, get yourself in front of a mirror and try to see where your skin is looking shiny or dull. Think of how your skin felt during these two hours. Did it feel tight, normal or greasy?
Then, grab a piece of parchment paper (if you don't have it, use a tissue paper instead), open it wide and cover all your face with it. Gently but firmly, tap your face and take it off to analyze it.
Looking at your tissue paper, ask yourself the following questions.
Do you notice a significant amount of oil soaked all over the tissue? If so, you probably have an oily skin.
Do you notice that the oil that has been soaked is only on your forehead, nose and/or chin area? Then you have a combination skin type. Now, do you feel the rest of your skin comfortable or dry with a pulling sensation? If the answer is the last one, you have a combination of oily and dry. Otherwise, you probably have a combination of oily and normal skin.
If you notice that there's very minimal or no oil at all on the tissue, you can have either normal or dry skin. Just check on the points above and ask yourself how your skin feels like.
Skincare, Lancôme, Bioderma, Biodermal, The Body Shop, Nivea

Now that we covered this part, it is also important to be able to determine any problems your skin may be prone to.

Between a vast variety of skin problems, such eczemarosacea, and others, the most common issues are acne and sensitivity.
Though you may not be a teenager anymore, it can still happen that your skin is prone to acne. Especially if you have an oily skin type, though it may also happen to normal or dry skin types as well.
Now, if you're a woman and you notice that from time to time a pimple will show up and, after a couple of days disappear, worry not. This is mainly due to hormonal changes during your menstrual cycle. Not entirely sure if this can happen to men as well, but it just makes sense to me that men would also struggle with hormonal changes that affect their skin as well, even without having a period.
Sensitive skin usually reacts very easily to regular products or external factors. It tends to get red very easily, feel itchy and even prone to rashes.
Just to give you an example, I've come to realize that I have a combination of normal and oily skin with a few bits of the problems mentioned above. It did get very well during a stage of pregnancy (due to hormones) and it does tend to be more balanced in dry climates such as where I live now. But I still have oily skin mainly on my forehead (especially when wearing bangs), nose and sometimes under the eyes. I have very large pores, especially on top of my cheeks, nose, and forehead. I do not have severe acne, and never had, but I do tend to have white and blackheads very easily and have a couple of acne scars from my teenage years.

Last but certainly not least, a few important tips to help you achieve a balanced and happy skin. Because the skin is the product of how we treat ourselves and it's our shield to the harmful external factors.

  • Sleep enough hours per day
  • Eat (mostly) healthy and varietally
  • Exercise regularly
  • Avoid smoking
  • Learn to manage stress
Of course, it also very helpful to seek assistance from a professional esthetician and get a treatment every once in a while. I know it can be on the expensive side, but it is an investment for your well-being nonetheless.
There's a lot you can do at home as well to make your skin feel great, but I'll leave that for a future post.
I hope that you found this helpful! Any questions, let me know!

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