Do You Really Know Your Skin Type?

Achieving a youthful, dewy, complexion worthy of a pinch on the cheek doesn’t come from using the crème de la crème of moisturizers.

Rushing into injectable treatments can be risky and expensive.  Relying on the sales-personnel at the beauty counter or believing a celebrity endorsed skin serum on TV, will most likely get you nowhere.

The most crucial step is to know your own skin type, first.

How you ask?  Knowing your skin type is as easy as learning to identify your power fruit — not the fruit you eat, mind you, but the fruit that you most closely resemble. 

We can literally look at the skin of three popular fruits and find similarities to help us identify our own skin types: oranges, lemons and apples.

When we know what we are we can best know which anti-aging battle plan to implement.

It sounds strange because most of us think about skin type in terms of conditions like acne, rosacea and the ever-popular “sensitive,” but this is not the way to see the big picture of your visage.  

Oily skin is like the skin of an orange

To explain, can you compare your skin to an orange: thick, porous and dimply with small, liquid caverns of orange oil ready to burst and mist off with a bend or tear? This is an oily skin type and tends to be the heaviest of the three with the greatest likelihood of sagging (especially around the jowls and eyes) with age.  This heavy and juicy skin, however is not prone to wrinkling and should be prized and not stripped of its oils.  Because this skin type of the heaviest, skin tightening treatments like Thermage and Ultherapy will be helpful for a nice lift.  This thick skin can also sustain regular exfoliation quite well via microdermabrasion and chemical peels.  Prescription vitamin A is great for smoothing out the enlarged pores of this oily skin type.

Normal skin is like the skin of a lemon

Lemon skin is most illustrative of the ever-elusive “normal” skin type.  Much like its other citrus counterpart, the lemon has a moderate amount of oil essence and a medium thickness with noticeable, but smaller and uniform pores.  

You lemons out there know who you are: you probably get a mild to slick shine in your T-zone and not much shine out on the periphery and jaw line. 

Lemons are prone to more wrinkling than an orange but, on the up side (literally) less sagging.  You should prize your oil production because it wanes with age. 

Be sure to always protect against the thinning effects of the sun’s rays because your thinner skin is fast to buckle under pressure.  Eye cream is key to start as early as your twenties and be sure to get exfoliated regularly and use hydrating serums.

dry skin is like the skin of an apple

The porcelain skin of an apple is most akin to a dry skin type.  Apple skin is paper-thin without noticeable pores or divots.  Just like polishing the popular fruit with your sleeve and gazing at its delicious sheen before you sink your teeth in, dry skin is smooth, lustrous and delicate.  

Apples, you are prone to wrinkling much earlier than other skin types — a crêpe-like, feathery appearance around the eye and mouth can show up as early as your 20s. 

Keep in mind your long-term anti-aging battle will be with wrinkling, dehydration and thinning. Heavier, more emollient skin creams seem to work best and many apples like cleansing oils and milks as opposed to foaming cleansers.  Dry skin can irritate easily because of its lack of oil and may need regular re-applications of moisture throughout the day. 

Focus on keeping your collagen and elastin proteins as thick as possible by avoiding sun exposure and fitting in monthly facial massage sessions with your esthetician to keep facial muscles as toned as Serena Williams’ biceps because you need all the lift you can get.

Now that the produce section of your local grocery market has a bit more meaning, it is important to clear up any confusion about skin conditions that go beyond the signs of aging.  

As mentioned before, acne, rosacea and sensitive skin conditions are common selling points for many cosmetics and should be available to all the fruits of the world; however, keep in mind that conditions are temporary and skin type is forever. 

In order to have great skin it is paramount to know your skin “type” and then identify the specific “conditions” (short or long-term) that you may be experiencing.  

Any type of skin, albeit thick and oily or thin and dry can be sensitive.  Likewise, acne, does not favor any particular skin type (contrary to popular belief) and can happen to those with the smallest pores and others with the largest.  

Hormones and bacteria play a larger role in breakouts than oil production, alone.  So, squeeze a fruit, give yourself a pinch and a look-over and book it to your nearest spa. It behooves all you fruits out there to find a licensed esthetician to treat your specific conditions within the context of your long-term needs for your skin type.  

Remember: peaches and cream is nice but knowing your skin type will better suffice.