What's Your Skintype?

Feb 21 21:37 2007 Kate Barker Print This Article

It's just as important for men to look after their skin as it is for women. All men should read this article so that they can learn about their skin type and establish a simple routine to care for it. All products mentioned in the article can be found at the author's site Barkster For Men.

Know your skin type!

Skin is your biggest organ,Guest Posting it regularly gets scratched, bruised and burnt. Its one of your main erogenous zones, yet much of the time it's not given any thought. Perhaps its time to change that, after all, how good you look depends on how well you take care of it.

Skin constantly regenerates and renews itself. The outer layer, called the epidermis, is as thin as a pencil line. It consists of a protective layer of skin cells that continually sheds and gives way to new cells. Below the epidermis are the dermis and hypodermis, two layers that produce the oil, collagen, and elastin that give your skin support, elasticity, and shine.

There are 4 basic skin types: oily, dry, combination and normal. The type of products you use will depend on your skin type.

Be aware that your skin type will change from time to time and you will have different needs depending on the time of year, if you are under stress, or as you age.

DRY SKIN

Skin is tight, drawn, flaky with a dull complexion. Dry skin can lack elasticity and be extremely sensitive to the sun, wind, and cold temperatures. Dry skin occurs when the dermis does not secrete enough oil, or sebum. Often people with dry skin change frequently from normal to dry then back again.

  Causes of dry skin

  • The skin has become dehydrated because oil glands are not supplying enough lubrication to the skin.
  • Skin has been exposed to the elements, particularly in winter.
  • A genetic condition.
  • Nutritional deficiencies, lack of vitamin A and the B vitamins, can contribute.
  • Conditions such as dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, or seborrhoea.
  • Reaction to a product you have put on your skin.

  Solutions to dry skin

Moisturise: good moisturisers should have antioxidants, water-binding agents, and anti-inflammatory ingredients. Kate recommends trying Jack Black's Double Duty Face Moisturiser.

Keep applying moisturiser: If your skin really is dry you can't use too much. Whenever your skin starts feeling dry, put more on.

Avoid products that are drying: do not use a soap, cleanser or any product that leaves a dry feeling on your skin. Avoid products with harsh ingredients such as alcohol. Do not over scrub skin. Men-U's Healthy Facial Wash won the Instinct 2004 Grooming Award for Best Facial Product.

Avoid taking long showers: Too much water is bad for skin, it breaks down the skin's protective covering.

Exfoliate: increases skin cells turn over giving a more natural, youthful appearance, removing the build-up of old skin cells and replacing them with newer, smoother ones. Woody's Exfoliating Pre-Shave is specially designed to meet the needs of men's skin. 

OILY SKIN

Oily skin can change from day to day, depending on the elements. This type of skin appears as shiny, thick, or slightly waxy , often oily skin has coarse pores and pimples and other blemishes. It is prone to blackheads, whiteheads and pimples. In this type of skin, the oil-producing sebaceous glands are overactive and produce excess oil and lipids than is needed. The oil gives the skin a greasy shine, the skin pores are enlarged and the skin has a coarse look.

  Oily Skin Causes

  • Hereditary
  • Diet
  • Hormone levels
  • Humidity and hot weather
  • Reaction to a product you have used

  Solutions for oily skin

  • Keep your face as clean as possible, cleansing two or even three times daily.
  • Exfoliate several times a week, this will stop pores from clogging.
  • Avoid using products that overdry skin, this paradoxically causes your skin to produce even more oil than usual.
  • Wash in tepid water, hot water can strip your skin of needed moisture, while cold water can shock your skin.
  • Use noncomedogenic moisturizers and sunscreens, they are oil-free and won't clog pores.

Kate has found the perfect solution to this common problem in Medik8's Oil Balance which automatically balances the sebaceous function. She says "not only is this a great product to control oily skin, it can also be used to solve the problems of too dry skin - it will increase or decrease the number of active glands as required".

COMBINATION SKIN

This can be a mixture of all the basic types, usually the differences are in the T-zone that crosses the forehead and down the nose and chin.

  Treatment for combination skin

  • Look for products that normalise your skin, such as those that contain alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs or fruit acids) or retinols, a vitamin A derivative. (Don't use AHAs at the same time as shaving the combination could cause irritation).
  • Try different products for different areas and follow the tips above in the areas they are needed or use Medik8's Oil Balance to control the sebaceous function of the different areas automatically.
NORMAL SKIN

Normal skin has an even tone, with a smooth texture; this type of skin has a clear, supple and smooth surface which is neither greasy nor dry. It is not suffering from enlarged pores, blemishes, greasy patches or flaky areas. It condition stems from good blood circulation and excellent health.

Caring for normal skin

Normal skin is the ideal state for your skin to be in, to keep it this way: 

  • Cleanse twice a day. Jack Black's Pure Clean Daily Facial Cleanserworks gently, without over-drying, to leave your complexion clean, hydrated and fresh.
  • Moisturise twice a day.
  • Exfoliate once a week.

Hope this helps you find the best products for you!

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About Article Author

Kate Barker
Kate Barker

Kate Barker is the creator of Barkster For Men. After seeing that men are finally realising the benefits of looking your best (something women cottoned on to years ago) she decided to remove all the hassle from the shopping experience and bring the products straight to all the guys out there. She offers everything from shaving and skin care to health and hair care so that every man can make the most of themselves. The site also features great advice, from a woman’s point of view, on lifestyle, grooming, health, diet and fitness. As Kate says “You only get one you, so don’t waste it”. Visit Kate at http://www.barkster.co.uk.

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