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The Grooming Manual

How to Figure Out Your Skin Type and Treat It Correctly

How to Figure Out Your Skin Type and Treat It Correctly

Here’s the deal: skin types are a real thing. And using the right products for your skin type can make all the difference when it comes to maintaining your skin health. 

Don’t believe the hype? Well, have you ever felt tightness after you wash your face or experienced an oily sheen that just wouldn’t go away? How about out-of-control acne that you couldn’t seem to manage?

More often than not, these common conditions are caused by using the wrong skincare products. 

The good news? These issues can be avoided if you understand your skin type and use men's skincare products that make your skin happy. 

Understanding Skin Types: The Basics 

There are five big categories when it comes to skin types. Your skin may seem like it’s one type when it’s really another (like dry skin masquerading as oily - more on this later). But it’s important to get your category straight so you don’t apply products that exacerbate any problematic conditions.

Normal Skin Type 

Normal skin is the holy grail of skin types - so, lucky you if you have it! Normal skin generally responds well to all products.

How to identify normal skin: 

People with normal skin notice:

  • Few imperfections or acne concerns 
  • Little to no sensitivity 
  • Small, nearly invisible pores 
  • An overall clear complexion 

Products that normal skin loves: 

Normal skin can basically tolerate anything - but you still don’t want to test it or drive it into dryness with super intense products. If you have normal skin, focus on products that balance your skin and maintain its natural equilibrium. 

There aren’t many men's skincare products made for exclusively for normal skin. Most are either for “normal to oily” or “normal to dry” skin - so you’ll have to try a few and choose the products that make your skin feel best. 

A good starting point could include: 

Since you don’t have any standout problems to deal with, you should focus on prevention - particularly signs of aging. To this end, follow a daily face care routine for men with active and damage-fighting ingredients like vitamin C and protein peptides.


Combination Skin Type 

Combination skin doesn’t know what it is. Some places it’s dry, some places it’s oily - and it can change throughout the day or after a shower. 

How to identify combination skin: 

This is one that can often masquerade as a different skin type, so you’ll have to be careful here. People with true combination skin often experience: 

  • Oiliness in the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) 
  • Pores that appear slightly larger and more open 
  • Blackheads or general congestion 
  • Slight shine to the skin 

Products that combination skin loves: 

To treat combination skin, you have to address a lot of conditions at once. So you’ll need products that work with both oily and dry skin. These include: 

  • A balancing face cleanser for men that’s gentle enough not to throw your skin further out of whack. Instead, it should hydrate and calm dry skin while clearing congestion and controlling excess oil production.
  • A skin toner for men to restore pH balance and get rid of any tightness after showering or washing the face. 

hyaluronic acid face moisturizer

Sensitive Skin Type 

If you consistently deal with redness, irritation, reactions to skincare products, or skin changes due to weather conditions, you may have sensitive skin.

How to identify sensitive skin: 

Those with sensitive skin will commonly experience: 

  • Redness 
  • Itching 
  • Dryness
  • Burning
  • Irritation

Products that sensitive skin loves: 

  • An anti-aging vitamin C booster for antioxidant protection against free radicals and other environmental stressors that worsen irritation. 

restorative anti aging cream for men

Oily Skin Type 

A lot of guys think they have oily skin, but few actually do. Men sometimes bring an oily complexion upon themselves by using too-strong products made with alcohols and harsh, synthetic ingredients. 

When they do this, the skin tries to protect itself. So it over-produces oil to try to even things out. Then, the guy buys even stronger products and uses them even more try to clear the excess shine, and the cycle continues worsening. 

How to identify oily skin: 

If you truly have oily skin, you will experience significant shine and occasional breakouts. You will also see: 

  • Enlarged pores
  • Dull, shiny, or thick complexion
  • Blackheads, pimples, or other blemishes

Products that oily skin loves: 

If you have oily skin, that doesn’t mean that you should skip the moisturizers and hydrating ingredients. Doing so could cause your skin to overcompensate and produce even more sebum. Instead, maintain a comprehensive skincare routine that includes: 

Always remember to avoid harsh scrubs and overly-rich products that don't help improve oily skin concerns. 

glycolic acid peel for men

Dry Skin Type 

Everyone has experienced dry skin at some point in their lives. Maybe you got a sunburn or faced a ton of wind and wound up with dry skin. But experiencing that kind of occasional dryness does not mean that you have a dry skin as a skin type.

How to identify dry skin: 

Guys with dry skin typically have: 

  • Small, nearly invisible pores
  • A flaky or dull complexion 
  • Patchiness 
  • Loss of natural skin elasticity 
  • Noticeable fine lines and wrinkles 

Products that dry skin loves: 

Rich, refreshing, and restorative products that contain both humectants and occlusives are best. Humectants draw in moisture from the environment; occlusives seal that moisture in. Have one without the other and you won’t effectively treat skin dryness. For the best results, incorporate: 

  • Ceramides, which mimic your skin’s natural lipid layer and protect its natural barrier.

face moisturizer for men

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