3 Mistakes People Make When Determining Their Skin Type

As an esthetician working with skin hands-on for 25 years, I know there is more than just dry, normal and oily when it comes to skin types. Since my line is based on nine skin types, it is my belief that to get the best results from your products, you must use products exclusively for your skin type. But how do you go about determining your skin type? Many people think they understand what their skin type is, but I find that many people will get it wrong. Here’s three common mistakes people make when trying to determine their skin type. Take our Skin Type Quiz to learn which products are recommended for your skin.

Mistake #1: Only focusing on one or two of your skin’s needs, instead of looking at the big picture.

People mistake their skin type, therefore choosing the wrong skin care products because they are usually hyper-focused on just one or two things going on with their skin, choosing products just for those issues, instead of focusing on ALL of their skin’s needs.

For example, a 40-year-old woman may start to get occasional hormonal cystic breakouts and because acne cysts are so painful and can linger for a few weeks, she may now start thinking her skin type is “acne-prone” (understandably so) and purchase products for “problem skin” and and completely ignore that her skin has anti-aging needs. Harsh products for acne-prone skin will only leave her skin dry, irritated and flaky. Her best bet is to use a spot treatment for acne cysts, because cystic acne rarely responds to regular blemish products anyway, so she may not even be helping the breakout after all. Renée Rouleau Anti-Cyst Treatment works best as a spot treatment for controlling stubborn hormonal acne cysts…

Read: Are You an Adult but Still Treating Your Skin Like a Teen?

Mistake #2: Not understanding the difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin.

Dry skin means there is little to no oil being produced and the skin can appear rough and flaky. Therefore, oil-based products (albeit using non-pore clogging oils) are needed to keep the moisture barrier intact.

Dehydrated skin means there is little water in the skin (you can still be an oil producer) and the skin can feel tight. Water-based products using powerful humectants are needed to keep water content within the skin’s cells.  If you are someone who gets breakouts and uses harsh products to treat the acne, it’s normal for the skin to be left feeling tight, which people then associate as being dry. So they start using a moisturizer formulated for dry skin which may contain ingredients that further aggravate the acne problem. Oily skin tips would benefit from Reneé Rouleau Sheer Moisture or Matte Moisture.

Read: Are You Avoiding Moisturizer to Avoid Breakouts?

Mistake #3: Misunderstanding the true meaning of sensitive skin.

When people are asked if they have sensitive skin, most people will say “yes.” However, sensitive skin has different meanings to different people. There are those who get blemishes easily from using pore-clogging products and consider this to be a symptom of sensitive skin. (Use water-based, oil-free products to eliminate products contributing to breakouts.) Then there are those whose skin gets red and irritated easily from harsh products. (Avoid using harsh products so you don’t irritate your skin. Problem solved!) And then there are those whose skin gets red and flushed easily (like someone with rosacea) and to me, this is definitely considered sensitive skin.

Read: How Can I Lessen the Amount of Chemicals I Use On My Sensitive Skin?

What’s the solution for determining your skin type? Don’t go it alone, put your skin in the hands of a trusted skin care professional who can help you determine your true skin type and suggest a skin care program (both for at-home use and professional treatments), so you can get the best results for your skin’s needs. But the quickest place to start is by choosing your skin type here.

WATCH VIDEO: What’s Your Skin Type?

Which products are right for your skin? Take our Skin Type Quiz to learn which products are recommended for your skin.

Need expert advice from a licensed esthetician? Schedule My Skin Prescription to get personalized advice in person, over the phone or via Skype or Facetime.

For more expert skin advice, check out Skin Source–the A-Z guide on all things skin. Also sign up for our skin tip e-newsletter, follow Renée Rouleau on Twitter and join the discussion on our Facebook page. You’ll be your own skin care expert in no time!

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