How can I determine my skin type?

How can I determine my skin type?

Understanding your skin type is a fundamental first step in understanding the most effective way to take care of your skin. While all skin types benefit from using products like cleansers and moisturizers, which ones you use will depend on what type of skin you have.

Although everyone’s skin is unique, there are five primary skin types: Oily, Normal, Combination, Dry, and Sensitive.


Oily skin refers to skin that has excess oil, most commonly throughout the t-zone of the face (forehead, nose, and chin.) Oily skin tends to look shiny, feel greasy, and is often prone to blemishes and breakouts.

Normal skin is well-balanced – not too dry or too oily. Those with normal skin are not typically prone to breakouts or flakiness and tend to have a balanced t-zone.

Combination skin has areas that are both dry and oily. For example, skin is typically shiny on the forehead, nose and chin, while appearing dry or normal on the cheeks.

Dry skin is generally rough, scaly, flaky, itchy or irritated with an overall dehydrated look and feel.

Sensitive skin varies widely from person to person but is often characterized by visible redness and dryness. Sensitive skin may not always show visible signs and may just have feelings of discomfort.

Ways to identify your skin type:


Observe your bare skin. Half an hour after cleansing have a look to see if it appear shiny on your cheeks and t-zone. If so, you are most likely to have oily skin. Or, does your skin feel tight, and have flaky areas? Your skin is likely to be dry. If you see an unbalanced mix of oiliness and dryness, you most likely have combination skin.

Use blotting papers

By pressing a clean blotting sheet on various spots of your face will quickly show how much oil your skin is producing.

If there is little to no oil visible, you most likely have dry skin. If the blotting sheet reveals minimal oil from your forehead and T-zone, your skin is probably normal, or combination.

How do I care for my skin type?

Oily skin type

Oily skin occurs when the skin barrier produces an excess of sebum which can lead to clogged pores and blemishes. If you have oily skin look for products that help balance excess oil and are non-comedogenic. Dr Zamani recommends exfoliating 2-3 times a week to help remove dead skin cells from skin’s surface and washing your face twice a day. Also ensure you moisturise your skin each day too because an oily skin can easily become dehydrated leading to an increase oil production!


Dr Zamani’s tip for oily skin: Consider incorporating blue light therapy into your regime. Red and blue light combined are clinically proven to have anti-bacterial properties, decongest and clarify skin and balance a troubled complexion caused by p. acnes microbes.

Normal skin type

Luckily for you, skin concerns for normal skin types are generally minimal, so routines may be simpler to master. To help maintain balanced, healthy-looking skin, it is still essential to prep your skin with a gentle cleanser, hydrate with a daily moisturizer, and protect with broad-spectrum sunscreen during the day. You should also help replenish skin at night with a hydrating face mask.


Dr Zamani’s tip for Normal Skin: It’s key for normal skin types to maintain and balance hydration levels, so make sure a daily moisturiser is part of your routine.

Combination skin type

Combination skin can be a little more challenging to care for since it is made up of multiple skin types. The simplest way to care for combination skin is to look for products formulated for all skin types. Typically, formulas for all skin types help balance skin without over-drying or causing excess oil.


Dr Zamani’s tip for Combination Skin: Target multiple skin concerns at once by multi-masking two to three times a week.

Dry skin type

Since dry skin produces less sebum than normal or oily skin, the key to caring for it is to keep the skin barrier properly hydrated. The more moisture the skin holds, the healthier the skin’s appearance is. Without sufficient moisture, skin can be vulnerable to a weakened skin barrier, resulting in dry areas and ultimately speeding up the skin ageing process. Those with dry skin should look for formulas that hydrate, nurture, and moisturize, and are free from alcohol, fragrances, dyes, or chemicals.


Dr Zamani’s tip for dry skin: Look for products formulated with Squalane. Squalane is a highly refined botanical lipid known to help stabilise skin’s barrier and maintain moisture. Using products formulated with Squalene for dry skin can help replenish skin for a soft, smooth, and healthy appearance.

Sensitive skin type

Visible signs of redness and the feeling of tight, uncomfortable skin are indicators of a weakened and compromised skin barrier and often characterise sensitive skin. Care for sensitive skin by choosing gentle formulas that can help strengthen the skin barrier and look for treatments that are formulated to help treat visible redness and skin discomfort.


Dr Zamani’s Tip For Sensitive Skin: Help with skin discomfort by boosting your skincare routine with Ceramides. These strengthen the skins compromised barrier.