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What's Your Skin Type?

IN THIS ARTICLE:

There are five main skin types: combination, dry, normal, oily and sensitive. Your skin type depends on how much water is in your skin (this affects your skin's comfort and elasticity), how oily it is (this affects your skin's softness) and how sensitive it is (this affects how it reacts to stressors).

How to determine your skin type

You can determine your skin type in three steps:

1. Wash your face with a gentle cleanser.
2. After washing, wait an hour without applying anything to your face.
3. After an hour, observe how your skin looks and feels.

Balanced skin will look and feel even and smooth but may have slight oiliness or dryness.
Combination skin will be oily in the T-zone, but dry around the cheeks and jawline.
Dry skin will feel itchy and tight with noticeable flaking.
Oily skin will be shiny with a greasy feel to it, especially in the T-zone.
Sensitive skin will feel itchy and may be inflamed.

How to care for your skin type

Now that you’ve determined your skin type, it’s time to get a better understanding of what that means for your skincare routine.

Balanced skin

This skin type is not too dry or too oily and is considered the easiest type to care for because it usually has few imperfections, no severe sensitivity, barely any visible pores and often has a radiant complexion.

For this skin type, choose a gentle cleanser that easily breaks down, makeup and impurities. Aloe Milk is a great choice. After cleansing, give your face a spritz with Face Food. This hydrating mist is formulated with a minerals that help protect your skin from environmental stressors. Follow up with Berry Rich Face + Eye Cream to maintain skin radiance.

Combination skin

This is the most common skin type out there. It can be difficult to care for because one product may not work for your entire face. People with combination skin often benefit from using one moisturizer on their T-zone and a different moisturizer on their cheeks and jawline.

For combination skin, I recommend cleansing with Face Foam and our Bamboo Charcoal SpongeFace Foam is formulated with azelaic acid, which has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to reduce blemishes. The Bamboo Charcoal Sponge provides gentle physical exfoliation that helps to clear clogged pores and remove dry skin flakes.

Hands over sink applying Face Foam to Bamboo Charcoal Sponge

After cleansing, hydrate the skin with a spritz or two of our Face Food Mineral Mist. Then follow up with Fullmoon Serum. This water-based serum is formulated with moth bean extract, a natural retinol alternative that helps to speed cell renewal. It also contains blue tansy, which is rich in chamazulene and helps to control excess sebum. Our Phyto Clear, infused with two plant-based retinol alternatives, works well for combination/oily skin. It's gel-like texture helps to gently clear congestion and alleviate the appearance of acne scars to reveal smoother and brighter looking skin!

If your cheeks and jawline are a little drier, try applying Phyto Clear on the oily areas and Skin Stuff Face + Eye Cream on the drier areas. By using two different moisturizers, you can help to give the different areas of your face exactly what they need.

Dry skin

This skin type can be uncomfortable and sometimes painful. Signs of dry skin include: tiny pores, dull complexion, red patches, less skin elasticity and increased signs of aging. People with dry skin often experience cracking, peeling, itchiness and inflammation.

If you have dry skin, try dropping the temperature and length of your showers. It’s also important to use gentle cleansers that don’t strip your skin of the little moisturizer it has.

To care for dry skin, start with a creamy cleanser like our Aloe Milk Cleanser. Formulated with apricot kernel oil and aloe vera, this non-foaming cleanser helps to nourish, calm and soothe dry skin.

After cleansing, add a boost of hydration with Face Food Mineral Mist. Next, apply Moon Boost Serum; a nutrient-dense oil serum is formulated with seven vitamins to give the skin everything it craves. Top it off with Berry Rich Face + Eye Cream. This velvety-rich moisturizer is formulated with vegan probiotics to reinforce the skin barrier, and mineral-rich blue-green alga to hydrate the skin.

Moon Boost Serum spilled on white background

For extremely dry skin, try a Putty face mask in the evening. After cleansing, apply a thick layer of our Putty moisturizer and leave on for 10 to 20 minutes before gently wiping away any excess and continuing with your skincare routine. Putty is a super soothing moisturizer formulated with colloidal oatmeal and cocoa butter.

Oily skin

This is another skin type that can be difficult to care for as enlarged pores do not make it easy to keep blemishes at bay. Other than enlarged pores, this skin type is associated with a shiny skin (giving off a thick complexion), blackheads, pimples and other blemishes. Oiliness can be caused by weather, hormonal imbalances and stress.

For oily skin, cleansing is essential and non-comedogenic moisturizers are a must. I recommend cleansing with our Face Foam. This gentle cleanser is formulated with white willow bark to help unclog pores and regulate sebum production.

After cleansing, give your face a spritz with Face Food Mineral Mist to help hydrate and mattify the skin. Next, apply Fullmoon Serum. This water-based serum is formulated with mahogany bark extract to help diminish the appearance of pores. Finally, finish off with Phyto Clear. In addition to two plant-based retinol alternatives, Phyto Clear contains non-comedogenic squalane oil, which will help to reduce the look of pores and keep oiliness/blemishes at bay.

Bottle of Phyto Clear surrounded by greenery

Sensitive skin

This skin type can be challenging because it often reacts to anything and everything. Sensitivity can show up as redness, itchiness, a burning sensation and/or dryness.

I always recommend patch testing before adding any new products to your skincare routine and patch testing is even more crucial if you have sensitive skin. Products that are dermatologist tested and formulated for sensitive skin can still cause a reaction.

For this skin type, a simple routine with minimal products is best. The more products you introduce, the more likely you are to come across an ingredient that your skin doesn’t like.

Our Face Foam is a gentle cleanser that is formulated for those with reactive, sensitive skin. After cleansing, apply Skin Stuff Face + Eye Cream. This ultralight moisturizer was formulated specifically for skin that reacts to just about everything. Skin Stuff is infused with botanical ceramide to help strengthen your skin barrier.

Final words

Your skin type isn’t set in stone. Weather, hormones, diet and stress can all impact your skin. Pay close attention to how your skin looks and feels. If you think your products are no longer working the way they used to, perform the skin type test again.

The routines for each skin type outlined above are just starting points. Even though there are five skin types, everyone’s skin is different. What works for one person with sensitive skin may not work for another.

We offer three ways to help you find the right products for your skin:

Our Deluxe Sample Set includes 12 sample sachets so you can try products before committing to the full size. Take our skin quiz to get a routine that matches your skincare goals, or enjoy a virtual personal shopping experience with one of our product experts!

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On the surface, there are five different skin types. But not so deep down our skin is all the same. Click here to learn about the three skin layers and how they function.

Main image by: Artem Varnitsin

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