How To Determine Your Skin Type How To Determine Your Skin Type
Learn How to Care for All Skin in Esthetics School Near You
Everyone’s skin is different, and not every skincare product is alike. That means there are seemingly endless combinations you could try, and none of them could be good for your skin in particular.
During esthetician training, you’ll learn how skin cells grow and how to identify and care for different skin types, plus the types of products that are most beneficial to them.
While you wait for classes to start this fall and winter, you can review our handy skin identification guide to get a head start on your learning journey at Eric Fisher Academy in Wichita.
Skin Types You’ll See in Your Esthetician Career
In general, there are five basic skin types:
- Dry skin
- Combination skin
- Oily skin
- Sensitive skin
- Normal skin
Remember: not everyone’s will fit perfectly into one of these definitions, and every type of skin has its own characteristics and needs.
In esthetics school, you’ll learn to classify skin according to a list of factors: level of sensitivity, hydration, and sebaceous secretion.
Weather, low air humidity, and exposure to hot water can make skin dry, but these factors are temporary. Lifelong dry skin, however, is its own skin type. Some people are simply genetically predisposed to having dry skin.
Dry skin is prone to cracking, which can expose it to bacteria. It often feels tight or rough, and may itch or appear red. Some dry skin is ashy gray in tone, and can present with flakiness.
This skin type can coincide with other skin disorders, like eczema or atopic skin.
Combination skin has characteristics of both dry or normal and oily skin. Combination skin occurs because sebaceous glands and sweat glands are not homogeneously distributed.
With combination skin, areas that appear oily are usually the forehead, nose, and chin – called the T-zone – while the cheeks are normal or even dry.
People with oily skin tend to have larger pores, with a humid, glowy quality to the skin. Excessive fat production by the sebaceous glands are responsible for oil skin. This production is often because of genetics or hormonal causes.
People with oily skin tend to be more prone to acne, and are usually younger than 30 years old.
Sensitive skin is reactive to outside stimuli, and can feel uncomfortable because of tightness, itching, or redness.
Sensitive skin is more likely to have an allergic reaction and is more prone to infection. It is delicate and needs specialized care to fight against dryness and roughness.
Sometimes estheticians refer to sensitive skin as irritated, but the words are synonymous.
All skin types are normal. But when we say “normal skin” as estheticians, we mean that the skin is neither excessively dry, nor excessively oily. There are no imperfections, and it has a soft, smooth appearance.
Normal skin does not require special care or consideration.
Determining Skin Type
There are two easy ways an esthetician can determine a client’s skin type before they are able to discern it on-sight after years of experience.
The first is called the bare-face method. It requires the esthetician to examine a client’s skin without any lotions, makeup, or other topicals on it. To perform the bare-face method, start with clean, dry skin.
Cleanse the skin, pat dry with a towel, and wait about 20 minutes before thoroughly studying it. A noticeable shine on the T-zone could indicate oil skin. Flaky skin indicates it is dry. If it is a mixture of oily and dry, it’s likely combination skin. Skin that remains red after washing, or that looks inflamed may be sensitive.
The second simple way of determining skin type is using a blotting sheet. The esthetician presses a clean blotting sheet onto the face in various spots. Then, they hold the blotting sheet up to a light source to see how much oil was absorbed during the blotting process.
If a lot of oil is present on the sheet, the client likely has oily skin. If there’s minimal oil from the nose or forehead, it’s likely a combination or normal skin. But if there’s virtually zero oil spots on the sheet, it means the client has dry skin. You will still need to visually inspect the skin to determine whether it may be sensitive.
Eric Fisher Academy is a World-Renowned Esthetics School
Founded by cosmetologist Eric Fisher, Eric Fisher Academy, located in Wichita, Kansas, is a modern esthetics school that provides hands-on training and specialized business curriculum students can’t get anywhere else.
After learning esthetics techniques, students practice on real clients in the recently-renovated student spa, and prepare for a rewarding career helping people feel beautiful in their skin.