Exposure to winter’s harsh climate can leave us struggling to maintain healthy, beautiful skin throughout the season. Skincare is a different struggle for all of us, but there’s no need to spar with your skin. You just have to understand it.

We asked Eucerin Head of Research and Development Stefanie Conzelmann for a lesson.

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Educate Yourself: What are the different skin types?

Normal skin has a good supply of blood, which lends to an even complexion. This skin type feels soft, smooth and usually doesn’t create any problems.

Dry skin has slightly flaky areas that may feel taut or itchy. The skin looks rough and patchy and could show signs of premature ageing. It’s also sensitive to external influences and changes in temperature. Dry skin lacks moisture and lipids.

Oily skin tends to have a shiny appearance caused by excessive sebum production. People with oily skin tend to suffer from enlarged pores and impurities, especially blackheads.

Combination skin has a distinct T-zone, which includes the forehead, chin and nose. These areas are oilier than others so they tend to look shiny while the skin on the cheeks is normal to dry.

It’s also important to understand that while skin types are mainly genetically determined, one may suffer from different conditions which may vary according to the internal and external factors that the skin is subjected to. These include sensitive skin, mature skin and pigmented skin or blemish-prone skin.

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Analyse yourself

You can identify your skin type by looking in a magnifying glass – ideally 15 minutes after cleansing – and checking to see if you have the following traits:

An even complexion indicates that you have normal skin.

A complexion with redness and dry areas, means that you have dry and/or sensitive skin.

Blackheads and spots, plus a shiny forehead, nose and chin with dry cheeks tell you that you have combination skin.

Skin that feels oily and appears shiny, with enlarged pores indicates that you have oily skin.