Chances are your complexion doesn’t fall into the category you think it does. Find out what your actual skin type is—and how to get your face looking it’s best.
On the surface, categorizing your skin sounds pretty basic—you’re either dry, oily, combination, or sensitive, right? Not so, say the experts. “The truth is, skin type is like a fingerprint, and everyone is different,” says Elena Arboleda, head aesthetician at New York City’s Mario Badescu spa. Since skin often takes on multiple personalities, most of us incorrectly assume we have combination skin, or miscast our complexions entirely—which can result in unsuccessfully battling the same pesky skin troubles for a lifetime.
Common Skin-Typing Mistakes
The overflowing cornucopia of today’s beauty solutions can be as much a curse as a blessing; product misuse can trigger reactions like redness and flaking, causing people to incorrectly label their skin as sensitive or dry. “People are usually hyperfocused on one or two things going on with their face and choose products for those issues alone, instead of focusing on all their skin needs,” says celebrity aesthetician Renée Rouleau. Telltale signs you’re using the wrong products for your skin type include stinging and burning, endless flaking, excessive oiliness, or inflammation.