How to Tell if You Have Dry or Oily Skin Type
What Causes this Skin Type?
Skin can be flaky, tight, or sometimes appear as peeling
Dry skin (scientifically known as Xerosis), appears in different forms that not everyone can distinguish. It’s more commonly known that more women suffer from dry skin. But all skin types are more prone to dryness as both men and women age. Up to 40% of complaints to the dermatologist comprises of dry skin problems.
When your skin starts producing less sebum than how normal skin does, it’s described as dry skin. Sebum, an oily(lipid) secretion of the sebaceous gland is meant to retain moisture for your skin. With the lack of sebum present, your skin can lose its natural shield against external influences due to an impaired barrier function.
Your skin is constantly losing water via:
Perspiration: active water loss from the glands caused by heat, stress and activity
Trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL): the natural, passive way in which skin diffuses about half a litre of water a day from the deeper skin layers
Dry skin can be caused by a lack of:
Natural moisturising factors (NMFs) - especially urea, amino acids and lactic acid – that help to bind in water
Epidermal lipids such as ceramides, fatty acids and cholesterol which are needed for a healthy skin barrier function
What causes this skin type?
Skin can feel oily, sticky and uncomfortably greasy
Just like dry skin, oily skin happens when your skin is not producing sebum at a normal skin level. An excess of sebum production promotes the oily and sticky feeling that we all call oily skin (medically known as seborrhea).
One highly common cause of oily skin is due to an increase in Androgen levels due to fluctuating hormones such as during your puberty years or even pregnancy. Science fact : Androgens are male hormones present in both males and females that signaling maturation of the skin’s sebaceous glands. The reaction to hormonal changes are also dependant on your genes besides hormones.
With the excess of sebum production, it causes your skin to have this oily sheen when it’s produced from the pores. Should this excess sebum gets trapped in the pore, it’s more likely to cause acne flare-ups due to a mix of dead skin cells and bacteria from the surface of the skin. This produces the end product of what we commonly known as pimples, blackheads and varying types of acne.
The next time you ask “Why is my skin so oily?”, keep in mind that there are two main factors to blame: hormones and genetics
A number of issues trigger the overproduction of sebum:
Hormonal changes and imbalances
Comedogenic cosmetics (make-up products that cause irritation)
Oily skin is prone to comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) and to the varying forms of acne. With mild acne, a significant number of comedones appear on the face and frequently on the neck, shoulders, back and chest too.In moderate and severe cases, papules (small bumps with no visible white or black head) and pustules (medium sized bumps with a noticeable white or yellow dot at the centre) appear and the skin becomes red and inflamed.