Unlock Your Skin’s Secrets: Identifying Your Facial Skin Type

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During my teenage years, my face was oily and covered wondered what is going on with my face. It wasn’t until I did research and found out how to treat and love my unique facial skin type.

Want to know what to do with each one? I’ll let you know, but first I’ve got to let you know why I went looking.

How the journey began

When I turned ten, puberty started. All of a sudden, my face became a shiny, bumpy mess! I’d wash my face and thirty minutes later, it would look like I’d never washed it. Then the pimples came!

My mom and grandmother told me I should wash my face more, so I did. It didn’t help. The bumps kept coming. By the time I was twelve, my face was shiny and bumpier.

During my annual physical, I mentioned the acne problem to my doctor. He examined my face, and then prescribed a Benzoyl Peroxide cream for my skin. It was to clear up the acne. So I went home happy!

That night, I rubbed the cream all over my face and then went to bed.

When I opened my eyes the next morning, for some reason I couldn’t open them very wide. It felt like something was sitting down on my eye lids. If you’ve ever squinted your eyes, that’s as much as I could see out of my eyes.

It was so weird! I wondered why my eyes were doing this, so I went to the bathroom to take a look in the mirror.

Bad mistake! What I saw made me scream! My face was swollen and puffy.

My eyes looked like little slits buried in my face! No wonder I could barely see!

I freaked out and ran to my mom! She was a little surprised, but remained calm. (She was a nurse. I’m sure she had seen worse.) After my mom calmed me down, she told me what may have happened. An allergic reaction to the cream.

At that point, there wasn’t much that could be done. So, on my mom’s advice, we let nature take its course and wait for the swelling to go down.

My only thought was I didn’t want anyone to see me this way. So I got to stay home that day.

Since some of the swelling had gone down, my mom felt it was okay for me to go to school. I didn’t want to go but I did.

The swelling took another day to completely disappear.

At the time, Benzoyl Peroxide was the miracle cure for acne. Since that miracle hadn’t worked for me, I had to find other ways to deal with my skin.

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Image from Pixabay

The four types of skin

After doing a lot of reading and researching, I learned there are four types of facial skin: dry, oily, combination/normal, and sensitive skin.

Each one should be cared for differently. Here is a quick rundown on the different types and ways to care for them.

Dry skin

Dry skin is, well, dry skin. If you wash your face and you see dry patches about 30 minutes later, you have dry skin.

The best way to take care of dry skin is to moisturize it. 

This is the type of skin my daughter has. Her great-grandmother, who also had dry skin, started her using a moisturizing soap (Dove soap to be exact). This soap is advertised as having 3/4 moisturizing cream in it.

Though my face skin is not dry, I wanted to try it. It lathered well, and had a creamy, silky feel to it. That must be the moisturizing cream.

There are other soaps and cleansers on the market specially made for dry skin. This will be written on the product’s packaging.

Now if the first product you use doesn’t work, keep trying until you find the one that does work for you.

Oily skin

This skin is easy to spot. If your face is shiny thirty minutes after you wash it, it’s a good bet you have oily skin. I’ve struggled with this type of skin most of my life.

People think this type of skin is easy to care for. All you have to do is wash your face all the time. Well, it’s not that easy. Overwashing can actually damage the skin.

The products I used when I was younger was Cuticura Soap and oil blotting papers.

There are products for oily skin out there. It will be listed on the labels. As long as there are no moisturizers in it, you are fine.

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Combination/Normal skin

This is exactly what it sounds like. Dryness on the cheeks, while the forehead, nose, and chin (the T-Zone) are oily. When I got older, I realized this facial skin seemed to match me a little better.

The best way to handle this skin is to use both techniques for dry and oily skin. Since I’m lazy, I use a mild soap (like Ivory Soap) on my face.

If you want to use a product, look for soaps and products made for combination/normal skin.

Sensitive skin

The fourth type is sensitive skin. If products and soaps leave you with red, bumpy, or splotchy skin, you might have sensitive skin.

I don’t have sensitive skin, but I’ve read that getting help from a dermatologist (a skin doctor) is a good idea. He/she could determine if you have sensitive skin and help treat it.

If you don’t want to or can’t get to a doctor, please proceed with caution. Some items on the market are supposed to be safe for sensitive skin or hypoallergenic. Look for a label saying this on the bottle or packaging. It will be a trial-and-error process to find what works best.

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Photo by Freestocks on Unsplash

The Takeaway

So, the takeaway is to be aware of your facial skin. There are four types of facial skin: dry, oily, normal/combination, or sensitive. Whatever type you have work with it, not against it. Your skin and you will be a lot happier.

Just saying!

If you have stories or comments you’d like to share, please put them in the comments section below. I would love to read them. Maybe they could be helpful to someone.

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