How to Determine Your Skin Type

Posted by Jules Annen on


What skin type do I have?

As a licensed Esthetician, one of the most common questions I get is “how do I know what type of skin I have?” Adding to the confusion is, our skin changes – daily – literally! Depending on what we eat, drink, how much sleep we get, environmental factors like central air, heat, outside humidity or lack thereof, and many more. When I do a skin consultation with a client, we go over many factors, including diet, lifestyle, etc, but for the purpose of this post, I’ll give you two of the most telling questions that you can answer for yourself to help you make better skincare choices.

1) Look in a mirror. When you run your fingertip (the pad, not your nail) against clean skin, does it turn red or blotchy, or itch? 
If so, you are a true sensitive skin type.
If your skin does NOT do any of those things, you are not a sensitive skin type, you likely have another skin condition like a compromised moisture barrier or an irritation to a specific product.

2) Wash your face in the morning with warm water – ONLY warm water, and apply the rest of your skincare as usual.  How long does it take for your skin to get oily?  Not FEEL oily…actually GET oily – a thick shine or waxy texture.
Is it a few hours? (three or less) or Is it later in the day? Or not at all?
*If three hours or less, you have a true oily skin type
*If later in the day, or only on parts of the face (t-zone is common) you have a combination skin type
*If not at all, you are a dry skin type

Once you have identified your general type, you can choose basic three-step products that work well for that type, then use modifiers like Serums, Essences, and Masks to adjust your routine and your needs by the day. 

To learn more about Amber Peterson, visit her website:


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