The 5 basic skin types and how to improve texture for each.

There are five basic types of healthy skin: normal, oily, dry, sensitive and combination. Skin type can be determined by a number of factors and can change over time. Factors that affect your skin type include genetics, climate, hormones and diet.

Each skin type requires different skin care to improve skin texture and appearance. But how do you know which skin type you have? And what steps should you be taking to get healthier and smoother skin?

Read on for some sage advice on how to figure out what skin type you have, along with expert skin care tips and recommendations as to how to improve the texture of each. We’ll also suggest some skin care supplements and product recommendations, depending on whether you have normal skin, oily skin, dry skin, sensitive skin or combination skin.

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1. Normal skin

Normal skin - also known as eudermic skin - is neither too oily nor too dry, and has balanced pH levels. Sebum production tends to be moderate and pores tend to be small, meaning that if you (are lucky enough to) have normal skin you will likely experience very few breakouts or blemishes, no sensitivity and the texture of your skin will be smooth and even.

When it comes to normal skin, maintenance is the name of the game. There are a handful of steps you should take to ensure that your skin stays plump and well-hydrated, and that you maintain the health of your skin as you age:

  • Drink enough water throughout the day to sustain your skin’s naturally good hydration levels and prevent your skin from drying out.
  • Wear sunscreen whenever you leave the house - even if it’s cloudy or overcast. This will prevent wrinkles and dark patches from appearing over time.

Supplementing with LYMA can further protect you from UV rays and hyperpigmentation.

  • Moisturise daily to prevent the overproduction of sebum.
  • Cleanse thoroughly and make sure to thoroughly remove all make-up before bed. Failing to do so may result in clogged pores and breakouts - not what you want.
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2. Oily skin

Oily skin can be caused by hormonal imbalances, seasonality or climate, or genetics. If you have oily skin, you may experience acne or breakouts, have large pores and your skin may sometimes be greasy in appearance.

Oily skin can be a massive pain to have to deal with, but there are some simple steps you can take improve the quality of your skin starting now:

  • As with other skin types, and though it may sound counter-productive, you should moisturise regularly. This will keep your skin hydrated and prevent your pores from producing too much sebum to make up for any lack of moisture.
  • Likewise, you should ensure you’re drinking at least eight glasses of water every day to keep your skin plump and hydrated.
  • Cleanse thoroughly morning and evening in order to rid your skin of any accumulated dirt and bacteria that may be clogging your pores.
  • Don’t over-wash or over-exfoliate. Both of these can strip away necessary and healthy oils from your skin’s surface, leaving your skin dehydrated, sensitive and prone to heightened oil production and breakouts. Exfoliating too much can also dull your skin and stimulate excess sebum production. To maintain your glow, exfoliate a maximum of two times per week.
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3. Dry skin

Dry skin may be characterised by the presence of rough or flaky skin, uneven texture, a tight sensation in the skin, and itching. All of these symptoms stem from a lack of moisture in the skin.

Dry skin is often caused by a combination of genetics, seasonality (dry skin is, perhaps unsurprisingly, more common among people living in dry climates) and age. Too-long and too-hot showers can also contribute to the development of dry skin by stripping away the skin’s natural oils.

As you age, your skin produces less sebum and this can contribute to the development of dry, flaky skin and the increased appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. There are, however, steps you can take to fight back.

So what can you do to prevent dry skin from taking hold?

  • Moisturise with a high-quality moisturiser every morning and every evening before you go to bed.
  • Avoid long, hot showers that strip your skin of its natural oils.
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. If you can meet - or even exceed - the recommended eight glasses of water a day then you’ll be heading in the right direction.
  • Avoid direct sunlight which can dry skin out.
  • If your skin has become drier with age you might wish to consider supplementing with LYMA. LYMA contains Lycored Lycopene™, a carotenoid with potent antioxidant properties which has been clinically proven to both prevent, and to improve the appearance of existing, fine lines and wrinkles whilst inhibiting ‘collagenases’; the age-related break-down of the skin’s collagen and elasticity.
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4. Sensitive skin

Does your skin flush when you eat spicy food? Do you find that new products, creams, lotions and potions can have a negative impact on your skin’s texture and appearance, making it itchy and uneven? Does a hot shower cause your skin to turn crimson?

If you experience any of the above, plus you find that your skin generally becomes more oily in the summer and drier in the winter, then you probably have sensitive skin.

If you suspect that you fall into the sensitive skin camp, you should take the following precautions and steps:

  • Whenever you try a new product, conduct a patch-test on the inside of your elbow before putting it anywhere near your face. If there is no reaction after 24 hours, you can safely use it. This applies even when the label reassures you that a product is ‘hypoallergenic’ because it may still cause your skin to flare up and react.
  • Keep products natural, mild and free of additives and nasty chemicals. Water-based products are best.
  • Avoid using too many products on your skin - stick to water where you can and keep moisturiser, cleanser etc as close to mother nature as possible. If you can make your own products from natural sources such as rose water, orange blossom, coconut oil and shea butter, then that is preferable for sensitive skin.

5. Combination skin

Combination skin is probably the trickiest to treat. A mixture of oily and dry skin, combination skin more often than not means an oily, breakout-prone T-zone (nose, forehead, chin) and dry cheeks. Your cheeks may also be sensitive.

What causes combination skin? Generally a mix of genetics, climate and using the wrong products lead to imbalances in the make-up and texture of the skin. Harsh and chemical-laden products in particular can result in excess sebum production and thus an oily T-zone.

If you are looking to improve the texture of combination skin you need to:

  • Use a gentle, natural cleanser to avoid clogging your pores.
  • Only exfoliate a couple of times a week at most, and do so gently. Another reason for this is that if you exfoliate too vigorously you can damage and break the upper dermis of the skin.
  • Choose an oil-free mosturiser, cleanser and sunscreen to prevent the pores on your nose, chin and forehead from becoming clogged. Oil-free make-up is also recommended.
  • Accept that you might need to adhere to two separate skin care routines - one for your T-zone and one for your cheeks. You can follow the above advice for oily/dry skin when devising your regimen.

In addition to Lycored Lycopene™, LYMA’s formula contains Cynatine® HNS; a really exciting ingredient for those who want to protect, repair, and improve the texture of their skin. Cynatine® HNS is formulated in LYMA using the latest technology to deliver a stable and clinically proven form of natural keratin peptides directly to the relevant cells, leaving your skin smooth, plump, hydrated and youthful.

If your skin has become more troublesome with age, you’re not alone (in fact, skin problems are one of the most common symptoms of menopause). If you fall into this category, read up on what the skin experts and beauty bloggers have to say as they reveal their anti-ageing skin care secrets.

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