Establishing a proper skin care ritual begins with knowing what type of skin you have so that you can find the most appropriate ingredients to treat your specific needs. Many of us tend to classify our skin into one of 4 categories: dry/sensitive, oily, normal and combination when in fact there are a few more to consider. It's also important to understand what each category truly entails.
Normal Skin: This what we all strive for. It is the perfect balance between water and oil--moisture and protection--rendering the skin nice plump, soft to the touch and graciously smooth. The skin is taut, resilient and elastic. Children's skin is the best example of this type. But there are some adults who blessed to have normal skin. And many, with the help of natural care, are on their way to getting normal skin.
Oily Skin: Oily skin is usually frowned upon. It is often associated with pimples, large pores, and blackheads but this doesn't necessarily have to be so. In actuality, people with oily skin are well protected from outside elements and do not show signs of aging. Their skin is nice & supple and thick & youthful. People with oily skin do have larger pores but this isn't a bad thing so long as proper cleansing and moisturizing rituals are in place to prevent outbreaks including blackheads, which are caused not by the oil, but by clogging the pores with dead skin cells and keratinized cells.
Dry Skin: Dry skin is usually favored over oily skin because it lends itself to all sorts of moisturizing products. But dry skin is actually a symptom that needs to be treated with care. There are 4 types of dry skin. a) skin that suffers from lack of oil production in which case the skin is thin with barely noticeable pores b) skin that lack sufficient water, in which case the skin may be thick and porous but dehydrated c) both a and b.
Dry skin generally lacks that glow and as you get older, fine lines develop into deep fissures and d) appearance of dry-skin due to external/ environmental factors that cause the skin to dry out such as the wind, prolonged exposure to sea water, the sun, harsh chemicals, pollution etc.
Sensitive Skin: This skin type often gets confused with dry skin and vice versa, and rightfully so because many times dry skin results in sensitive skin. The distinct difference is that sensitive skin is characterized by an over-reaction to outside elements and can be easily irritated. Rashes, itchiness, stinging or burning ensues. You can have oily skin and sensitive skin but this is not as frequent since the oils help protect your skin.
Blemished Skin: Blemished skin has the worst symptoms but is the most (easily) curable:). Blemished skin is characterized by chronic pimples, blackheads, and postules. These are symptoms that ensue not from your skins predisposition but from self-neglect or a bodily response to something that is not working well internally. For instance, a pimple out break for a teen (due to hormones) or an adult (due to sebum production) happens when skin is not properly exfoliated, causing dead skin cells along with bacteria to clog and infecting pores. In addition, a weakened immune system and disrupted intestinal flora both caused by antibiotics or poor diet (which can also disrupt the intestinal flora) affect your body's ability to fight off bad bacteria thereby increasing your susceptibility to bad bacteria. Furthermore, a weakened digestive system will affect how your body is able to process and eliminate foods which will, in turn, affect your skin.
Prematurely Aged Skin: Notice how I added the adverb "prematurely"? That's because I truly believe that we shouldn't fret the natural process of aging. Aging gracefully is a beautiful process. However, premature aging is not--that's when your skin starts to loosen or show signs of discoloration far before your time. This happens when your skin is not or has not been properly taken care of. For instance, smoking and other poor life style habits, applying anti-aging creams made of harsh chemicals, clogging pores and poor diet Premature aging is similar to Blemished Skin in that both are results of self-inflicted conditions and can be controlled. That's super good news!
Mature Skin: Maure skin is tricky to classify because it is marked by a state that you are in, although in your earlier years you may have had normal, oily, dry, sensitive or blemished skin. The type of skin you had will certainly impact the way your skin matures. But one thing that all people with mature skin have is the fact that the glandular functions of our skin slows down and decreases its ability to rejuvenate. Through the natural aging process of our bodies, our melanin production drops and so does our immune system, making our skin more susceptible to sun and bacteria.
Once you have identified your skin type, you can confidently choose the appropriate natural treatment rituals for the best results. Stay tuned for recipes, tips, and guidance on natural cleansers, masks, toners etc.
It's all in nature!
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