Do Skin Types Matter

There’s no dearth of skin products on the market to match every skin type, but don’t let it drive you crazy. Go by how your skin feels in response to the products you choose. Most people are oily in some places and drier in others. A few tips to consider:

  • If you’ve got oily skin, don’t be afraid to cleanse, treat and moisturize twice a day, as would a person with dry skin. Even though your skin looks “moist” doesn’t mean you could be missing key lipids to maintain your skin’s barrier: Your oil glands within the follicles are simply genetically programmed to be more active. Try using a cleanser with hydroxy acids on alternative days, or more often if your skin seems to respond well to it.
  • Dry skin is the most fragile. Be careful about over cleansing and over exfoliating, as your skin is more susceptible to irritation. Use a cleanser and tone with hydrating ingredients and exfoliate gently (and not every day). Look for products that contain skin soothers such as chamomile extract and arnica.
  • Fair-skinned people and those who spend a lot of time outdoors need to be extra cautious about over exposure to UV radiation. While a sunscreen with SPF 15 if sufficient for many, I recommend upping that coverage to at least 30 if you’re more sensitive to the sun. Similarly, if you take drugs that increase your sensitivity to the sun, which is the case for birth control pills, for example, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30.
  • Don’t overdo it. No matter what kind of skin you have, it’s easy to over clean and over exfoliate and in a word, irritate. You can also trigger excessive oil production with excessive use of soaps, cleansers, scrubs, and toners made with drying alcohols. Listen to what your skin is telling you and adjust your skin care routine accordingly

Give products up to six months to work and show results.

Doctor Murad Article by Howard Murad, M.D., FAAD, a world renowned skincare expert and founder of the Inclusive Health movement. Read more about Dr. Murad.

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