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Do You Know Your Skin Type?

Your skin type is something you are born with. It is determined by genetics and ethnicity but has the potential to change over time.

Your skin type is based on the amount of sebum (the skins natural oil) produced by the skin and the amount of oil found between the cells.

How large the pores are in the T-zone and throughout the face can help determine your skin type. The T-zone is the “T” shape formed by the forehead, nose and chin.

As we age, cellular metabolism and oil production slow down causing a change in your skin type, making it become drier.

The skin types are dry, normal, oily and combination.

Sensitive skin, although sometimes discussed alongside skin types, is actually considered a skin condition.

Acne, also discussed with skin types, is a skin disorder.

Dry skin is lacking oil. The pores are usually tight and small, barely seen, over most of the face.

Due to its lack of oil, dry skin can become more sensitive because the acid mantle and barrier function are not as healthy due to this lack of sebum (the mantle is created by sebum, sweat and dead skin cells.) It can also be caused by underlying health conditions such as hypothyroidism or hormonal imbalances.

The texture of dry skin is often slightly rough and feels tight. To correct dry skin products that create a barrier to hold in moisture and reduce water loss should be used. These products will help protect and correct the acid mantle and barrier function of the skin. (Donna J Skincare serums are perfect for this! 😊)

Normal skin has a good oil to water balance but can fluctuate and become more oily or drier. If the pore size is smaller to medium just at the edge of the nose your skin is normal. Pores are not usually that visible towards the cheeks or the outside of the face.

In oily skin the pore size is larger and contains more oil. If the pore is visible or larger over most of the face, you have an oily skin type. Skin can appear shiny, and an oily residue can be blotted away. Oily skin is prone to blemishes because the pores get clogged with oil and a buildup of dead skin cells.

People with oily skin tend to over-cleanse and over-exfoliate, thinking they are removing oil when they’re actually removing and damaging the acid mantle. If skin is stripped of oil, it is imbalanced and can become sensitive leading to bad bacteria multiplying rapidly and causing dehydration, sensitivity, and a whole host of other skin issues. If you wash your face and it feels slightly tight and “squeaky” clean, you have removed the acid mantle.

Our skin needs oil to function properly so walking the fine line between keeping skin and pores clean is essential for oily skin. Using products specifically for oily skin and following directions can control oil. Light exfoliation and not reaching for the “squeaky” clean feeling will keep skin healthy and the acid mantle intact.

Combination skin can be both oily and dry, or oily and normal at the same time. The T-zone is usually oilier as this area has more glands that secrete and pores, while the outer area of the face can be either normal or dry. If your pore size is more obvious and looks medium to large outside the T-zone, on the cheeks, this is an indication of combination skin.

To treat combination skin you balance the skin, this requires more care than other skin types as the oil-water balance needs to be achieved and maintained. Avoid harsh products, excessive cleansing and rough exfoliation.

What is your skin type?

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