Many people can get confused as to what skin type they are, but a few simple tips can help you figure it out. First, get a piece of tissue paper, then splash some lukewarm water on your face and let it dry. If you don't know what lukewarm is, it's basically in between hot and cold and this temperature is best to wash your face because it's not harsh on your skin. Once you dry your face, don't do anything else to it for about 30 minutes. When the 30 minutes is up, take the tissue paper and hold it to your entire face for about 10 seconds then peel it off. What do you see? Does it still look like normal tissue paper? Are there big oil splotches everywhere?
These questions will help you decide if you have oily, dry, combination or normal skin. I always say there are sub-categories to skin types because you can also have sensitive skin, older, more mature skin, acne-prone skin, etc. Now, back to the tissue paper. When you look at it, if you see a light, even distribution of oil, you have normal skin. If you see a lot of oil all over, you have oily skin. If it still looks like regular tissue paper, you have dry skin. And lastly, if there's oil in the t-zone (forehead, nose, chin) and normal in the cheek area, you have combination skin. There are also times where a person's skin can change due to weather or other circumstances. For me, I'm very oily in the late spring, all of summer and a little into fall, then the rest of the year I tend to be combination, depending on the day. I also have very sensitive skin and have to be careful what I use or I breakout real bad or get lots of red patches. I can be acne-prone occasionally, but since I'm older now, my skin's grown out of it.
Now, onto my sub-categories. Like I said with my sensitive skin, you can have a lot of redness all over, or it can be in splotches on your face. Some people can have that on their body as well. I can get it on my neck and chest area sometimes. A lot of people can mistake sensitive skin for acne because red bumps can appear, but it's not a pimple. It's just plain old irritation from not using the right products. Having acne-prone skin means you get blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples, either occasionally or frequently. When I was a teenager, I had acne pretty frequently. Now, it's actually very rare for me to breakout. I get maybe one a month, if that. You can also have severe acne where when you break out, they get all big and red, then can develop lots of pus. (Gross, I know.) When it gets that bad and you feel like you've tried everything, you have to see a dermatologist. They can prescribe certain medications or antibiotics to help get rid of it, or at the very least, lessen it a lot. Now with older, mature skin, obviously this is for the woman or man in their late 40's to early 50's and so on. I'm going to use my mother as an example, even though I feel she has beautiful skin. She has normal, very sensitive skin. She can get an oily nose sometimes, but not bad. Now for a woman in her early 50's she has incredible skin, but of course this is because she has a skincare routine she's been following for years and years, since she was a kid, and has instilled it in my head that if I take good care of my skin now, I won't have bad skin down the road. (Thanks, momma!)
There is so much more to skin types, but to me, this is the typical breakdown of the most common ones. Now a little disclaimer, I am not a professional in any way and if you feel there is something really wrong with your skin, please, please, please see a dermatologist. I can just give you my advice on products to try to help, but in no way am I a licensed doctor. Anyways, thanks for reading and if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave one below!