How to Identify Your Skin Type
What’s your skin type? Ah, that elusive question. It can feel like a complex, and often confusing, quest – but solving it is the skincare Holy Grail. So, here’s the good news: it’s actually not that hard to figure out, once you know what to look for (and sort fact from fiction). Luckily, we can help you with that. Here’s a quick guide to identifying your skin type, so that you’re all set to give it some love.
First thing’s first: let’s debunk some myths. There are actually three skin types – dry, oily, and combination. Other issues, like acne and sensitivity, are conditions that can happen to all skin types, but (thank goodness) they tend to come and go. It’s also entirely possible to have any combination of skin type and condition(s) at any time. Now you know that, you can get to understand your skin type – and the products that suit it – properly.
Think you have dry skin?
What dry skin looks like
Dry skin tends to look flaky, scaly, and can seem a little dull. You probably won’t have particularly noticeable pores (so there’s that to be grateful for), but fine lines are often noticeable.
What dry skin feels like
Dry skin can feel rough in places, and you’ll be no stranger to skin feeling tight post-cleanse. If your skin is dry, you’ll be prone to increased irritation and sensitivity too. Other signs of dry skin? A taught, tight feeling (especially if you try the wrong cleanser!), flaky skin and that feeling that your moisturiser only works for a few hours.
What causes dry skin
Healthy skin contains natural oils, and it’s their job to keep skin soft and supple, helping to keep moisture in and irritants out. Dry skin? It consistently produces less oil than normal skin. Environmental factors like the wind, cold, pollution, and even hot air, sneakily strip out (even more!) essential moisture, leaving skin feeling dry, rough and slightly worse off.
How to manage dry skin
While you can’t call time on your dry skin for good, you can help to keep it hydrated and improve its appearance. Firstly, break-up with any drying ingredients lurking in your products, and swap artificial colours and perfumes for kind alternatives like Geranium Oil, Glycerin, Shea Butter, Allantoin, and Vitamin E, which can help to gently moisturise and nourish skin. And it’s a no-brainer that dry skin loves moisture, so incorporate oils and richer, more intense moisturisers into your skincare routine.
Think you have oily skin?
What oily skin looks like
A shiny face (particularly across your T-zone and chin), enlarged pores, and spots are all tell-tale signs of oily skin. Plus, you may find your make-up has jumped ship by lunchtime.
What oily skin feels like
Oily skin feels greasy to the touch, but on the plus side, it rarely feels tight or dry.
What causes oily skin?
Our skin contains natural (good!) oils that keep skin supple and soft, plus they keep our lipid barrier in good condition. When our sebaceous glands go into overdrive, thanks to fluctuations in humidity, our hormones - and yes, even stress – they produce excess oils that can leave skin shiny and pores clogged.
How to manage oily skin
Be cautious of super rich oils and moisturisers and rather opt for lighter moisturisers, and consider an oil cleanser to combat the shine (yes, really). It may seem counter-intuitive, but oil-based cleansers are among the best cleansers for oily skin because oil attracts oil. So, when you massage a cleansing oil into your skin, it lifts away excess oils and impurities without stripping it of moisture.
Simple Hydrating Cleansing Oil is created with 100% natural grapeseed oil, which is known to nourish and keep skin feeling moisturised. It’s non-comedogenic too, meaning it won’t block pores, so it’s win-win for oily skin!
Think you have combination skin?
What combination skin looks like
If you’ve got combination skin, chances are you find your skin looks oily across your T-zone, and you might be prone to dry patches on your cheeks. The pores on your nose may look larger than those on your cheeks, too.
What combination skin feels like
While your T-zone feels a little greasy to the touch, your cheeks may feel dry, flaky, and tight.
What causes combination skin?
Essentially, combination skin means you have two or more textures. The pores on your nose, chin, and forehead tend to be overactive (hence the shine), while the pores on your cheeks are less active, and can feel dry. Some moisturisers can block pores and can cause those signs to surge, as can the sun, stress, and a lack of exercise.
How to manage combination skin
While it might seem like you’ve got the worst of both worlds, there’s an easy way to manage combination skin without spending hours in the bathroom. The trick? Simply mix and match your products to each of your skin’s needs, or look for ones that tackle multiple concerns. A micellar water like Simple Micellar Cleansing Water is a great all-rounder to effectively remove make-up, oil, and dirt without stripping skin.
Be targeted about how you apply products, too. Why not pick multiple products based on your concerns? The idea is to only apply products to the areas that need them, rather than treating your full face. Apply a rich moisturiser to your dry areas only, and consider using a deep-cleansing mask on oilier zones to combat congestion. Skin smarts? You got it.