There is plenty to learn about
combination skin, since it's
really two or three skin types
all bundled up into one neat little package!
Combination skin can be a bit tricky. With both dry and oily
areas, it's hard to find products that can treat such opposite
conditions, both with unique needs, "equally,"
but, there are ways to care for it as a whole.
Ideally, caring for combination skin requires a bit
of knowledge about how to care for balanced ("normal"),
dry, and oily skin. In this way, the various areas of your face
are treated as uniquely as its skin tone. In other words,
it helps to know what ingredients might be comedogenic or
pore-clogging, and what types of natural ingredients are
astringent, to help tighten the skin, such as witch hazel.
Learning about the various plant oils is also helpful.
For instance, apricot kernel oil is absorbed very quickly
and is not considered a very heavy oil, whereas some oils
or butters are considered heavier oils that are useful
for dry or very dry skin, but would not be good for oily
skin, such as cocoa butter.
It isn't difficult to identify which areas of your
face are drier than other parts. The main thing
to remember is that these different areas require
different treatment. For instance, you might apply
a "drawing" face masque to the area around your nose and on
your chin, avoiding around the eyes, cheeks, and
forehead where the skin may be drier. This will
draw or pull the oils from those particular areas
to help balance out the oil content of your face.
With the same thought in mind, when applying
heavier moisturizer, only attend to those areas
of dryness, while using lighter creams where
there is more oil. We are seeking balance!
Typically, the forehead, nose, and chin areas may be
oily, with cheeks balanced (normal) or dry.
But, there can be many "combinations" ...
such as a dry forehead and oily chin and nose area.
Often the oily areas can be around the nose area, or under
the mouth in the crease of the chin, although these are
areas that can be difficult to reach for cleansing.
A mild exfolliant can help these troubled areas and it also
helps if you can "stretch out" these areas of
your face as you are treating them, such as holding your
mouth open as though you are bobbing for apples. You might
look a little funny while you're doing it, but it really helps.
Face masques can look kind of odd too, but they work well!
Also, some light steam facials can be beneficial, which
helps to deeply cleanse, and clay facial masks are good to use,
especially in the oily spots. You may wish to use a less
drying mask if you have dry areas. These types of
"spot treatments" selectively give the skin
in these unique areas the type of care they need.
As for overall care, using a toner after any steam or
mask treatment, as well as after washing, helps to minimize
pore size and balance the pH of your skin ... this can
be used all over. Again, with moisturizer, you may
wish to use a heavier cream in any dry spots, with a
lighter cream in the oily spots.
So, the goal is to primarily decrease the oil and bacteria in
the oily areas, while continuing to nourish the dry areas.
For instance, some soaps or creams containing certain oils
can be beneficial for all-around use for combination skin.
These are oils that are not heavy and absorb easily.
Jojoba oil is one such oil ... it closely resembles skin
oils, so can be used with both oily and dry skin.
Aloe vera is also a good all-around soother.
If you would like to do some more reading,
please see our pages on oily, dry, and balanced
skin, since you may have these types of skin
as part of your "skin composition."
Your skin is as unique as you are, so it's good
to learn what works for YOU, as what may work
well for some people, may not work well for the
others. This is another reason why it's extremely
important to make sure when you introduce a new
product to your skin that you first test it on
a small area of skin that is located in a concealed
area, such as on the back of your neck (behind hair),
or behind an ear. Doing this will allow you to know
whether or not you have any type of allergy to the
Try testing various ingredients on your skin to see how it responds.
If you acquire positive results, then you have found something
you and your skin like! It can also be helpful to take notes and to identify
which areas of your skin are dry or oily, then you can write down what
products you have used in those particular areas
and record the results. Once you find what works,
then you can always refer back to your notes.
To fine tune your combination skin care regimen,
please see our other "skin type" pages to learn more.
Information regarding other skin types ...
Our skin maintains a delicate moisture balance.
We may lose this balance for a variety of reasons.
Read more ...
Living with skin that produces more oil than it needs takes a bit of patience and
Read more ...
Skin conditions are often very uncomfortable,
or even painful and beyond simply troublesome.
Read more ...