When you think of your body’s organs, you would probably list your brain, heart, lungs, liver, and others. While you can’t see these, your body’s largest organ is in plain view every day. It’s your skin, and the average adult’s skin can weigh between 7-22 pounds, per an article published by Informed Health.
It’s imperative to take proper care of your skin because it serves a variety of essential functions. According to an article published by the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology, its primary job is to be a barrier between you and the environment. Your skin’s outer layer, the epidermis, is waterproof, and it protects you against harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun.
The middle layer of your skin, the dermis, contains vital blood vessels, nerves, and sweat glands. It also has oil glands that work to keep your skin supple and moisturized. You also have hair follicles in the dermis and a thin layer of fat for insulation.
What’s Your Skin Type?
Although many products are formulated for “normal” skin, everyone’s complexion is different. If your complexion tends to be oily and prone to breakouts, you have an oily skin type. When your skin has rough, dry patches with flakiness, you have dry skin. Maybe you have an oily forehead, nose, and chin, but the rest of your skin is dry, which is a combination variety.
All these skin types can also be subcategorized as sensitive. How do you care for your complexion if you have more than one type? Here are ten helpful tips for keeping your combination skin beautiful and healthy.
1. Avoid Touching Your Face
Do you often catch yourself touching your face when you are talking, thinking, or just resting? Everyone is guilty of doing this without even thinking about it. An article from Plos One Journal shares that face touching is a spontaneous action humans have that may regulate their emotions or memory functions.
While it may be an automatic habit, it’s one that you can minimize. Your hands are constantly touching things in your environment and picking up microscopic debris and harmful microbes. Unless you’re washing your hands every second, you are transferring these bugs to your face.
Microscopic dirt particles from your hands can clog pores and cause unsightly blemishes. To keep your combination complexion healthy and blemish-free, avoid touching your face as much as possible. If you need to handle your facial skin, remember to wash your hands first.
2. Consider a Cleansing Face Mask
When’s the last time you pampered yourself with a cleansing face mask? There are countless brands on the market that you can purchase inexpensively. Facial masks also are formulated for your skin type, oily or dry.
What type of mask should you use if you have combination skin? Consider using two different kinds for each part of your face. Treat the dry areas with one for dry skin, and treat oily spots on your face with a mask for oily skin.
3. Give It a Good Blotting
If your skin didn’t produce its oil, called sebum, you would feel like a dried-out alligator all day. Fortunately, the oil glands (sebaceous glands) in your skin work to keep your skin smooth and hydrated. The oil also acts as an additional barrier to safeguard your skin.
When your sebaceous glands are overactive, it produces oily skin prone to acne and other breakouts. If your skin is combination, you’ll usually have oil problems across your forehead, down your nose, and to your chin. This oily area creates a T shape, so it’s called your “T Zone.”
How do you deal with these irritating oil slicks when they pop up throughout the day? Try to keep a supply of blotting sheets in your car, desk, or purse. When you notice an oily patch forming, use these handy tissues to gently blot (not rub) away the access oil.
4. Use a Quality Facial Cleanser
Washing your face every day has probably been part of your beauty regimen since you remember. You can gather much microscopic debris, germs, dead skin cells, and excess oil while you sleep. Having an excellent facial cleansing product and routine is vital for a glowing complexion.
Consider using a product that is formulated for combination skin. It will efficiently absorb excess oil while moisturizing dry patches. Don’t forget to repeat your face-washing routine before you go to bed, and never sleep without removing makeup.
5. Keep Your Skin Moisturized
It’s a bit tricky to keep your combination skin moisturized because some moisturizers can cause problems in your oily areas. If your complexion isn’t properly nourished and moisturized, you may notice more fine lines, wrinkles, and premature aging.
The solution is choosing a moisturizer that is made for your combination complexion. These are formulated without oils, so they won’t add to access oil problems. Instead, they will hydrate the dry areas outside of your T Zone that tend to be arid and flaky.
6. Exfoliate Your Skin
Your body does a superb job of shedding dead skin cells while replacing them with new ones. An article published by the American Academy of Dermatology Association states that you lose an average of 30,000-40,000 dead skin cells in a day. At that rate, your skin will have replaced itself entirely within a month.
Sometimes, your complexion can look dull and flaky with excess dead skin cells. Give your face a boost, and use a gentle exfoliation cream a couple of times a week. Consider a brand formulated for all skin types, so it treats both conditions of your combination skin.
7. Don’t Forget Your Sunscreen
It’s a misconception that you only need sunscreen when you are outside on a warm summer day. An article published by the American Skin Cancer Foundation warns that harmful UV rays are present on overcast days and all seasons. Snow can reflect up to 80 percent of these rays, which can be hazardous to your skin.
Do your skin a favor and wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 or higher. Some moisturizers have SPF sunscreen, and they are good to use, too. You can also be kind to your complexion by limiting your sun exposure and wearing sun-protective clothing outdoors.
8. Drink Plenty of Water
A study published by the University of Illinois found that your skin is composed of nearly 65 percent water. So, it stands to reason that you need to drink enough water to keep your body healthy and hydrated. You may notice more dry patches on your skin when you aren’t sufficiently hydrated.
An article published by the American Cancer Society recommends that men drink at least 13 cups of water a day while women should have at least nine. Water cleanses toxins from your body, including your skin. Be sure to stay hydrated for your overall wellbeing.
9. Try Hypoallergenic Skin Products
Another challenge of having combination skin is a sensitive complexion. Some soaps and other beauty products have harsh chemicals that can irritate delicate skin. It can cause blemishes in your oily T Zone and rough, sore spots in the dryer areas of your face.
You’re best to avoid products with fragrances, dyes, and alcohol. Instead, use products that are certified hypoallergenic that are formulated for combination or all skin types. Steer clear of products with heavy moisturizers like lanolin and plant oils, which can clog your pores.
10. Wear the Right Makeup
If you are a woman, makeup may be an integral part of your beauty routine. It hides the little flaws in your complexion while highlighting your best assets, like your eyes and lips. However, not all makeups are created equally.
Have you noticed more breakouts in your T Zone and more flaky patches in your dry zones? Maybe your makeup is a culprit. Finding the right makeup for your combination skin requires a little research with trial and error.
The same suggestions for other combination complexion products are correct for your makeup. Choose light, oil-free products that will work with your oily and dry areas. You may need to use different products and formulations for the right effect.
Be sure you read the labels as some oils can be hidden under other names. You want to make sure that it’s a natural makeup that won’t clog your pores or cause you to have a shiny appearance after a couple of hours.
Remember that everybody’s skin is different, so you may need to do some experimenting to find what’s best for you. The key is to keep your skin clean, exfoliated, and hydrated in a way that treats both oily and dry areas. Treat your skin with loving care, and it will stay radiant and beautiful for a lifetime.