How To Find Your Skin Type

I wrote another two posts for this series


I know this one is really late after those two, and I apologize for that. I got caught up with finishing and scheduling other posts and forgot to write this one!

Here, I’ll just go over some basics about skin types. Determining, or understanding the type of skin you have can greatly improve the condition of your skin, affect how well your makeup applies, and affect how well other skin care products absorb into the skin to continually improve it.

There are generally four skin types: Dry, Normal, Combination, and Oily.


In addition to these four skin types, there are also two categories of problem skin that you may encounter in addition to any issues that may come with your skin type: Acne prone skin and Sensitive skin

Now that that is out of the way, let me break down each skin type.

● D R Y ●

Dry skin is characterized by almost invisible pores, a dull/rough complexion, red patches, less elasticity, and more visible lines. 

Dry skin types are more prone to aging and irritation such as cracking, peeling, itching, irritation, and/or inflammation. People with this skin type should take great care to use moisturizing products and replenishing masks. Exfoliating gently can also help to remove any dead/flaky skin.

In terms of makeup, people with dry skin should stick more to moisturizing liquid foundations and cream foundations, as well as a dewy or illuminating primer/moisturizing primer. Of course, be sure to moisturize well before applying anything!

● N O R M A L ●

Normal skin is characterized by virtually no imperfections, basically no sensitivity, pores that aren’t too large (but not invisible), and a glowing complexion. This does not mean your skin is perfect.

Those with normal skin are lucky because they don’t experience significant oiliness, acne, sensitivity, or any of that stuff. There are also no problems with elasticity or softness. Skincare for people with this skin type is not very restrictive, and you can basically use products that aren’t too rich (typically for dry skin) as these will be too greasy, or products specifically for oily skin because these will be too drying. You may incorporate brightening products, anti-aging products, and/or products with anti-acne treatments in them to deal with minor imperfections.

In terms of makeup, you can basically play around with different textures of makeup (liquid, powder, cream, mousse, etc…), as they won’t cause significant problems. Just be mindful of ones that are specifically marketed to those with oily or dry skin since those might cause dryness or cause excess oils to form.

● C O M B I N A T I O N ●


Combination skin just means that you experience conditions of two or more different skin types on your face. Normally, people will have combination skin where they experience some dryness and flakiness on places like the cheeks, but oiliness in the area typically called the “T-Zone” (forehead, nose, chin).

You may have to treat different areas of your skin with different products. In terms of skincare, you will want to make sure that you are hydrating the dry and flaky areas with a good moisturizer, and not using too harsh of a cleanser or toner on the skin. In the more oily areas, you may want to use something that keeps oil at bay, and make sure to exfoliate.

In terms of makeup, you may want to use a moisturizing/hydrating primer on the more dry areas of your face for good base. For foundation, you might want to try using a matte finish foundation. You can try the reverse as well by maybe using a mattifying primer/base and then using a regular foundation.

● O I L Y ●

Oily skin is typically characterized by large pores (particularly around the nose, chin, and forehead), blackheads, whiteheads, and/or bumps, and visible shine (especially around the afternoon).

Those with oily skin need to be particularly careful because certain products that aim to combat oiliness may actually be too harsh and too drying, so they dry out the skin and cause the body to produce excess oil which only contributes to the problem further. Personally, I know this was a problem for me for a while. I have a skin care routing I’ve been using for most of break that I’ll probably discuss in another post, but back to the subject.

Generally speaking, those with oily skin should stay away from pore clogging products, and make sure to look for things that are labelled “comedogenic.” In addition, try to avoid things that are marketed as being “moisturizing,” as they will probably have extra emollient/moisturizing ingredients that will encourage extra oil production. Try to cleanse with things that remove all traces of dirt and other residue without drying out the face. In addition, you may want to try finding a toner that helps to minimize pores and repair the skin after cleansing. Lastly, try moisturizing with a gel or gel-cream. They’re hydrating without leaving the skin too greasy. Another tip is to use masks maybe once a week or so to pull dirt and other gunk out of the pores.

In terms of makeup, try applying a matte primer to the face before applying any makeup. This will not only help your makeup stay put, but it will help cut down on oiliness in order to make your foundation look more flawless.  Try using matte finished foundations, and then you can add dimension back into the face and a “glow” with highlighting and contouring. Also, carry around a translucent powder to blot and touch up during the day.

Next, I’ll briefly talk about the problem categories

○ A C N E  P R O N E ○

Acne prone skin just means that your skin may frequently experience breakouts. In this case, try using products that contain acne fighting ingredients (salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, etc…), gently wash and exfoliate skin so you don’t rupture your skin or further irritate it, use light moisturizers, and use oil free and non comedogenic makeup.

○ S E N S I T I V E ○

Having sensitive skin just means that your skin responds negatively to certain household or cosmetic products. This can manifest itself in the form of redness, stinging, burning, itching, dryness, tightness, etc..You should try to identify the triggers of your sensitive skin, and adjust your skin care regimen accordingly.

To close, here’s a reference chart just to summarize everything.

skin-type-chart (2)

Let me know what you all think of this little “series,” or if you think there is anything I could have included!


Photo credits:


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