How to determine and maintain your skin type.

How to determine and maintain your skin type.

Do you know that deterningg your skin type is important before even thinking of using skincare products? Your skin is just as important as all other vital organs(lungs, hearts, liver and so on) – after all it protects them from harsh conditions of the outside world. You shouldn’t use products on your skin without knowing if it would suit your skin appropriately. Hence, the need to know your skin type. Knowing your skin type is a first step to having healthy and beautiful skin.

This article provides you with techniques on how to determine your skin type as well as how to maintain it.

Get ready to know how…


  • Skin types – how many are they?
  • How can you determine skin type?
  • Normal skin type
  • Dry skin type
  • Oily skin type
  • Combination skin type
  • Sensitive skin type
  • Conclusion

Skin types – how many are they?

The five basic types of skin.

There are five basic skin type:

  1. Normal skin type
  2. Dry skin type
  3. Oily skin type
  4. Combination skin
  5. Sensitive skin

How can you determine your skin type?

There are two simple ways to identify your skin type. However, you don’t need to go to a spa to determine it – you can save cost by doing it at home and by yourself!

  1. The Blotting Paper Method

Take a sheet of bloating paper and gently pat it on your face. Leave the sheet on your face for sometime and hold it against a bright light. If the sheet picks little or no oil at all, you likely have dry skin. If the sheet picks up some oil from the T-zone(forehead, nose and chin), you most likely have combination or normal skin. If paper picks up oil from all parts of your face, you most likely have oily skin.

  1. The Bare-faced method

This method takes longer to carry out and can be used as an alternative to the blotting paper method. Cleanse your face with a mild cleanser and gently pat dry, but don’t add any skincare products to your face. After an hour, examine your T-zone and evaluate whether your skin feels parched by making facial expressions. If there is noticeable shine on your T-zone, you most likely have normal or combination skin. If your skin feels tight, you have a dry skin. If there is noticeable shine on your T-zone as well as your cheeks, you most likely have an oily skin.

Normal skin type

Normal skin has fine pores

This skin type is referred to as well balanced. Scientifically, it is called eudermic. It’s the type of skin that is not too oily, not too dry and possesses a balanced sebum production.

How can you identify normal skin?

Normal skin has the following characteristics:

  • No blemishes
  • No sensitivity
  • Fine pores
  • Soft and smooth texture

How can you maintain normal skin?

  1. Wear sunscreen

Wearing sunscreen can help prevent direct exposure to the sun, which can cause wrinkles, dry up the skin and cause dry patches. However, it is recommended that you use oil-free sunscreen to avoid clogging skin pores

  1. Stay hydrated

If you have a normal skin, your skin could get dried up and get flaky. Drinking enough water throughout the day helps your skin retain moisture. This technique is necessary for all skin types.

  1. Remove your make-up before hitting the sheets

Sometimes, after a long day, you feel so tired and you just want to hit your sheets and sleep. But it’s important you clean your make-up before doing so. Leaving your make-up on can clog pores and lead to breakouts – bet you don’t want that…right?

  1. Cleanse you face before going to bed

Dirt and bacteria can clog pores. Even if you don’t wear make-up, it’s necessary that you wash your face using a mild cleanser or water every night before you sleep. You should also be careful not to over wash. Over washing can lead to loss of some essential oils in your face.

Dry skin type

Dry skin has flaky and rough appearance

This skin type is mostly common with women and it accounts for 40% of visits to a dermatologist. It produces less sebum than normal skin, has a flaky and rough texture, feels tight at times and can cause irritation. Dry skin lacks the lipids that it needs to retain moisture and build a protective shield against external influences.

However, as you grow older, your skin becomes dryer.

How can you identify dry skin?

  • Dry skin has a flaky, rough appearance(very dry skin), and can feel tight too.
  • Itching
  • Sensitive to irritation if very dry.

What are the causes of dry skin?

Dry skin can be caused by climate, age, and genetics.

How can you maintain dry skin?

The following tips should help you maintain your dry skin:

  1. Don’t spend too much time under the shower.
  2. Pat your skin gently while drying yourself up
  3. Dry skin can get dehydrated quickly when exposed to the sun. To prevent this, use a sunscreen and try to avoid too much exposure to the sun
  4. Moisturize your skin regularly to keep soft and hydrated.

Oily skin type

Oily skin is prone to breakouts

This skin type is as result of excessive sebum production. It appears greasy and it’s prone to breakouts like pimples, acne and so on. The good news however is that oily skin has natural moisture and it’s less prone to wrinkles, therefore looks younger and more flexible.

What are the causes of oily skin?

Your skin type could become oily through: environmental factors, climate, genetics and hormonal changes.

How can you identify oily skin?

  • Prone to breakouts
  • Greasy appearance
  • Large pores
  • Prone to dark spots

How can you maintain oily skin?

  1. Moisturise regularly. This prevents your skin from overproducing sebum
  2. Stay hydrated
  3. Wash your face twice daily, but don’t over wash.
  4. When you see breakouts, don’t pop them( especially pimples)

Combination skin type

For combination skin, T-zone is oily while cheeks are dry

It’s a mix of oily and dry skin, hence the term “combination”. The T-zone of this skin type is oily and the cheeks are dry.

What are the causes of combination skin?

The major factor that causes combination skin is skincare products. Other factors include genetics, environmental factors, and climate.

How can you identify combination skin?

  • Oily T-zone
  • Breakouts only on the T-zone
  • Dry and sensitive cheeks
  • Pores in the T-zone are larger than the rest of the face.

How can you maintain combination skin?

The term ” combination ” doesn’t have to scare you! Follow these tips and you’d maintain it:

  1. Buy and use oil-free products
  2. Exfoliate once a week, it helps to remove dead skin cells. 
  3. Maintain two separate skin care routines. This simply means that you use separate products for your T-zone and cheeks – even better, find a product that suits the two!

Sensitive skin type

Sensitive skin reacts to products

Sensitive skin type reacts to new products and change of environment. This kind of skin is difficult to manage, takes time to maintain and understand what products to use. 

How can you identify sensitive skin?

  • Reacts to skincare products
  • Feel itchy and tight
  • Feels itchy while putting on tight clothes
  • Becomes oily in summers
  • Gets dry in winters

How can you maintain sensitive skin?

  1. Don’t apply too many skincare products to your face.
  2. Before you use any skincare product, conduct a patch test. You can carry this out by applying the product on your hand first and wait for 24 hours. If your skin doesn’t react to it, then you can use it on your face.


It is a rule of nature that changes are constant and that includes the needs of your skin as you age. It is essential that you keep the health of your skin in mind by regularly checking in  to determine what changes your skin is showcasing , and the right products to use to maintain a beautiful and healthy skin. After all, your skin protects you and the only way you can repay in full is to take good care of it by adhering to its needs!

(Also read: 6 healthy tips for students)

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