There are 4 categories of human skin. Understanding these differences in skin types will help you to know how to take care of your skin. Arizona dermatologist Susan Van Dyke believes that skin falls into one of four categories: normal, oily, dry and combination.
However, your skin type can change as you get older, and other factors such as genetics and even disease can play a role. “It depends on a number of factors,” he says. Normal-skin is velvety, with no acne and even in color But to maintain good condition, you need to minimize sun exposure. A face sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 is ideal for preventing wrinkles and other sun damage.
“Put sunscreen near your toothpaste and use it,” says Van Dyke. It does not matter if the weather is snowy or rainy, however, you may always be exposed to the sun by accident, so it is best to get in the habit of always applying sunscreen.
Soothes oily skin
Oily skin is characterized by excess oil (the technical term is sebum) on the skin. Some people with oily skin feel oily just a few hours after washing. “People with very oily skin feel the need to wash their skin between noon and 5 pm because fat builds up during the day,” says Van Dyke.
Oily skin can be an inherited trait, but it can also occur due to puberty, which causes the sebaceous glands to secrete too much fat. You may also notice more fat on the T-shaped area of your face due to the large sebaceous glands in your forehead, nose and chin.
People with oily skin usually do not need regular use of moisturizers, but using sunscreen is still essential to reduce UV exposure. Van Dyke recommends choosing a non-greasy sunscreen that is formulated for the face and is less likely to cause blackheads and clogged pores. “There are many sunscreens that are fat-free,” he says. Go to the pharmacy, read the labels, and try samples of the ones that are different from the others. There is no excuse for not using sunscreen anymore.
Soothes dry skin
Dry skin, on the other hand, suffers from a lack of natural moisture. This means that there is little fat that acts as a protective barrier on the skin surface, and moisture is low. People with dry skin feel tight on their face and their skin is often irritated. Exfoliation is another sign of dry skin, but it is not always a definite sign of dry skin.
“Your skin may be flaky, but it’s not dry,” says Van Dyke. Extremely dry skin can sometimes become itchy and painful, leading to a condition called eczema. Treatments for certain conditions can also sometimes lead to dry skin. For example, treating breast cancer may stop the production of hormones, which in turn can affect the quality of your skin.
“It puts people at a young age to menopause,” says Van Dyke. Suddenly, fat is no longer produced. Natural menopause has the same effect. Most women will have drier skin in their late 40s. To care for dry skin, use a mild, soap-free cleanser and moisturize your skin thoroughly. “It may be necessary to use a moisturizer twice a day,” adds Van Dyke.
Balancing complex skins
Combination skin is a combination of dry skin and oily skin. People with combination skin usually notice that their skin fat has accumulated in the T-shaped area of their face, while their cheeks are dry. Mixed skin can be affected by genetics as well as puberty. Sometimes a variety of products are needed to treat combination skin.
“You may have to treat different parts of your face differently,” says Van Dyke. For cheeks, for example, you may need a gentle, moisturizing cleanser for the cheeks, while a benzoyl peroxide anti-acne product may be essential for your T-shaped area of the face.
If you are still unsure about your skin type or how best to take care of it, consult a dermatologist who can recommend the best commercial or therapeutic skin care products. “Your dermatologist is the best specialist for your skin care,” she says.