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Skin Types vs. Skin Conditions

Discover the difference between skin types and conditions to better understand your skin and choose the right products for optimal skin health.

Skin Types vs. Skin Conditions


I start every single one of my facial appointments the same way. I look at my client’s skin and perform a skin consultation. I place eye pads over their eyes, then look closely under a magnifying light. I am looking at pore size, areas with fine lines, and any tightness, dryness, acne, redness, or irritation.

I ask questions about their skincare routine and the products they use. I ask about their lifestyle, how their skin feels and reacts throughout the day, and whether they notice any cyclical changes. These factors will clue me to what is going on with my client’s skin.

After assessing, I determine their skin type and condition, which will guide me in selecting the appropriate products and treatments to give them the best results. In this post, I’ll discuss how you can analyze your own skin so you can understand the best way to treat it.



What is a skin type?

Your skin type is largely based on genetics and can be broken down into three basic categories: dry, oily, and combination. This is the constant state of your skin, and although certain factors can cause it to change, it generally stays the same for much of your life.


Dry skin can be characterized by small pore size, flaking, and a feeling of tightness.


People with oily skin usually notice a sheen of oil on their skin and larger pores, which can be prone to clogs that turn into blackheads, whiteheads, or acne.


Combination skin is a combination of both dry and oily skin, generally with oiliness in the t-zone (nose, chin, and forehead) with dry areas everywhere else.



What is a skin condition?

Unlike skin types, which are typically constant, skin conditions are temporary and can often be treated. The main skin conditions people experience are acne, dehydration, sensitized skin, aging skin, and uneven pigmentation.


Acne can be caused by a wide range of factors, including external from product use or improper cleansing or internal from diet or hormones.


Dehydration is caused by a lack of moisture in the skin, which can be easily remedied by drinking more high-quality water, such as remineralized reverse osmosis water.


Sensitive skin includes inflammatory conditions such as eczema and rosacea, plus overall redness and sensitivity to light, heat, and certain skincare ingredients.


Aging skin, which is inevitable for everyone, can be characterized by fine lines, a lack of moisture, and loss of vibrance. While nobody can turn back the clock, there are ways to treat aging skin that restore vitality.


Uneven pigmentation can be caused by acne, trauma to the skin (such as picking at your skin), sun exposure, or hormonal changes (melasma).



mans face closeup



How to determine your skin type.

To determine your skin type, look in the mirror and examine your skin. You are looking for pore size and surface oil.

If you have larger pores and an oily sheen over most of your face, you likely have oily skin. (Sometimes oily skin can be dehydrated and appear to be dry, so pore size is usually the best indicator.)

If you notice large pores and oil only on your t-zone (nose, chin, and forehead), you may have combination skin.

If your pores are extremely small or generally unnoticeable and your skin looks matte, you probably have dry skin.



Analyzing skin conditions.

Skin conditions are pretty straightforward; what you see is what you get. Do you have active acne? Redness? Sun spots or scarring? Fine lines? Rough, flaky, dehydrated skin? Take note of any conditions your skin may have so you can seek out products or lifestyle changes that can treat them.



A solution for all skin types and conditions.

I designed our Holy Grail Face Oil formula to be a universal solution for all skin types and conditions. The combination of oils it contains produces equal levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which promotes balance in both dry and oily skin. It is lightweight and non-comedogenic, so it will not clog pores in oily or acnaeic skin, yet it is deeply nourishing for dry, dehydrated, and aging skin. It is certified hypoallergenic, so it works well for sensitive skin. Click here to learn more!

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