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Walk-in Dermatology > Blog > Cosmetic Dermatology > What is my Skin Type?

What is my Skin Type?

How to identify different types so you can better care for your skin

December 4, 2020
What is My Skin Type

Taking good care of your skin first means identifying your skin type.

There are five basic skin types: So-called “normal” skin, oily, dry, combination and sensitive. When you know your skin type, you’ll be able to create and follow a plan for helping your skin stay healthy and radiant. Skin types can also change over time, as we get older. Today’s oily skin may become tomorrow’s combination or dry skin. Across the face, skin characteristics can vary. Dermatologists and estheticians often refer to the T-zone, which covers the forehead, chin and nose. These areas tend to be oiler than the skin on other parts of your face and body.

Let’s Look at the Different Skin Types

Normal Skin

Not too oily, not too dry. Normal skin has good blood circulation and sebum balance. Sebum is the oily substance produced by your body’s sebaceous glands. It coats, protects and moisturizes your skin.

Combination Skin

As the name suggests, this is a mix of dry and oily skin. Often, the cheeks are dry skin while the T-zone is oily. This is the most common type of skin.

Oily Skin

This skin type may present a greasy appearance and is caused by excess sebum production. People with oily skin are more prone to acne.

Dry Skin

Identified by the flaky, rough texture. Dry skin may be irritating.

Sensitive Skin

If your skin reacts easily to new products, such as becoming inflamed or irritated when you try a different fragrance or when you eat spicy foods, your skin may be the sensitive type.

What is your Skin Type?

Here’s how to find out your skin type.

Remove any makeup, wash your face and let dry. A clean face gives you a baseline from which to start. Now, wait about an hour. Take a tissue or a piece of blotting paper and use it to gently pat your face. Hold the tissue up to a bright light, such as a lamp bulb. If the tissue shows some oil from your T-zone, you have combination or normal skin. If it picks up oil from all parts of your face, you probably have oily skin. If you see little to no oil, you most likely have dry skin. Sensitive skin is more subjective. If your skin is prone to irritation, it is likely the sensitive type.

Typical symptoms of sensitive skin include redness, itching, burning and dryness. A dermatologist can help you determine what causes the sensitivity, so you can avoid triggers like the ingredients found in some skin care products and detergents.

So why do I have this Skin Type?

Each person’s skin type is determined by several characteristics unique to every individual, including:

Water content, which affects the elasticity of the skin.

Sebum content, which affects skin softness and oiliness. Sensitivity, which is your skin’s tolerance to certain types of clothing fabrics, soaps and detergents, fragrances and other substances that can cause allergic reactions.

Genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors can all contribute to your skin type. Changes in diet, for example, can increase or decrease the production of sebum oils. Scientific studies have shown the relationship between diet and acne, for instance.

Let Walk-in Dermatology Take Care of your Skin

If you’re concerned about any skin condition, there’s no need to worry. Walk-in Dermatology can help. Our team of board-certified dermatologists and experienced medical staff will address your concerns and provide the necessary treatment for all your skin conditions. You can also schedule an appointment with us. Best of all, there’s no waiting. 

If you can’t make it to one of our offices, we can set up a Video Visit and even prescribe medications remotely. You can also schedule a teen facial or purifying facial with our medical aestheticians to decongest pores and soothe your skin. Contact us today.