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August 18, 2020
If you’ve read our previous blog, you know we’re all about that skincare life. If you haven’t, don’t worry: we’re here to explain why good skincare for your skin-type is fundamental if you want to achieve that flawless, makeup-ready skin TikTok makeup videos go crazy for*.
But first, a couple of questions:
Honestly, this is going to depend on you, personally. For us, we take care of our skin because it’s fun, and relaxing, and #self-care, and for you, it might be a side-effect of achieving a perfect canvas for your makeup. Maybe you just want to look good in pictures. Maybe you want to stop using foundation, and only rock eye-looks and mascara. Before you haul your skincare favourites, figure out why you’re doing it: hobby, necessity, something in-between, something different? This is going to determine how many steps your skincare routine is going to be, and what products you’ll need to get with what ingredients to achieve that look you want.
Everyone hates this question, but it’s fundamental to starting your skincare journey! You might have seen us throwing around words like oily, dry, and normal, but if you don’t understand what that kind of skin looks and feels like, then you might very well be shopping for products that won’t do as much for you as other items.
And yes, okay, it’s hard to self-examine your skin to figure out what’s going on with it, but that’s why we’re here to help.
Let’s start with skin-type.
Skin-type is determined through genetics, DNA, and sometimes, life phases - so, unfortunately, it’s not something that anyone can control, unless you’ve got a time-machine and experience cherry-picking DNA! What you can do, regardless of skin-type, is curate a routine that will make the most of what you’re currently dealing with.
So how can you tell what kind of skin you have? The Tissue test! Here’s how to do it.
1. Wash your face with water.
2. Pat - don’t rub! - dry.
3. Grab a few pieces of rice paper or tissue paper - as many pieces as it takes to blot your face. Try and keep one piece of paper per area.
5. To blot, press down for a few seconds, and then lift.6. Is the sheet:
Now that you’ve got a rough idea of what your skin could be, it’s time for the observation test. For this, you need to have a rough idea of what each skin-type is characterised by, so here’s our friendly cheat-sheet to help you along.
You’ve heard of the term ‘oil-slick’ - this is what happens when your skin over-produces sebum, leaving your face feeling sticky or greasy. Oily skin might have a ‘shine’ to it that you can see in natural light, and it could concentrate on the high points on the face, so take a look at your T-zone and your cheekbones. If they look glossy, and you haven’t doused yourself in highlighter, chances are you have oily skin.
Sweep your fingers along your cheekbones and your T-zone. Do they come away shiny? You have oily skin.
Next, have a look in a magnifying mirror. Does your skin look blemished - enlarged pores, blackheads, pimples? Oily skin can get congested easily due to the sebum production, so if you’ve got a ton of blackheads everywhere, not just in your T-zone, you probably have oily skin.
Psst: it’s not all doom, though! Oily skin is less prone to fine lines and wrinkles, which means you could be rocking 40 looking less than half your age as the oil helps your skin to remain plump and firm.
The polar opposite to oily skin, dry skin won’t pick up the pieces of tissue paper. Dry skin is caused by the complete opposite to oily skin: a lack of sebum and moisture, which can lead to blemishes, but more often leads to flaking.
Here’s a quick test: wash your face with your regular cleanser. Does your face feel tight after, like someone’s pulling at your skin? You could have dry skin.
Feel at your cheekbones, forehead, and T-zone. Do your fingers ‘pull’ at the skin, or skip? With oily skin, your fingers will ‘glide’, so if you’re finding it difficult to skim across your face without skipping, most likely you have dry skin.
Now, take a look in your magnifying mirror. Can you see fine lines, wrinkles, and a lot of flakiness? If you’re not sure what ‘flakiness’ looks like, try putting on foundation - does it cling to your face in patches, and look uneven no matter how much primer you put on? You have dry skin.
Lucky you, you’ve got the best of both worlds! Do you have an oily T-zone, chin, and forehead? You might have blemishes concentrated here, so take a quick peek in your magnifying mirror and focus on how your skin looks. Does it look shiny on your forehead, nose and chin, but dry everywhere else?
Do your cheeks pull at your fingers or refuse to hold the tissue paper, but your T-zone could blind motorists with its shine?
You have combination skin. Combination skin is a little tricky to diagnose, so don’t beat yourself up if you got it wrong; just keep in mind that dry cheeks, dry jawline, and an oily forehead and chin usually mean combination skin. You might also have visible pores on your cheeks (those dry patches!)
The holy grail of all skin-types, your skin is bulletproof. You don’t get oily unless you sweat, but your skin isn’t dry, either: it’s just normal. The tissue paper doesn’t stick, but it lightens a little bit, and your fingers don’t come away with oily residue, but they don’t skip on your skin, either.
Take a look in your magnifying mirror. Do you see any pores, any textural issues? No? You have normal skin, smooth and easier than the previous skin-types to keep happy.
Now go figure out your skin type, you beautiful person, you.
Got it all figured out? Great! Take a look on our website to shop by routine - our easiest, fool-proof way to get your skin sorted at a budget. Then, subscribe to our blog: next time, we’re going to talk about what those lovely skincare ingredients mean for your skin type.
* That said, we want to stress something: there’s no shame in dealing with breakouts and acne, especially now. Stress can exacerbate sensitive or problematic skin, and acne is a very real problem that most people are dealing with - so don’t worry if your curated routine isn’t giving you that glow that you need just yet. Also, even perfect skin has bad days, so don’t worry if your previously glass-clear skin now has a few pimples here and there. It happens to the best of us.
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