Discover your skin type
Look at your skin in its natural state before cleansing and without makeup in a magnified mirror and analyse the appearance of the skin surface.
Normal skin has even texture and colour. If the skin has dry/ flaky patches then your skin will be classified as dry and if you have oily patches, particularly in the T-zone of the forehead, nose and chin, then you have oily skin.
If you have noticeable blackheads/ breakouts again, often in the T zone, then your skin is classified as acne-prone skin.
Sensitive skin will often have patchy red areas where the skin is inflamed. Combination skin usually has an oily T zone and normal or dry cheeks. A confusing and often misinterpreted appearance is dryness and flaking around the nose and possibly eyebrows in otherwise greasy skin. This is seborrhoea, related to grease and therefore not to be treated with moisturizers!
Treat the skin
There are many cleansers to choose from on the market and the right one for your skin should match your particular skin type i.e. normal/combination, dry, oily, acne-prone, sensitive. Selecting the wrong one may lead to problems with your skin. For example if you have sensitive/eczema prone skin and you choose a cleanser containing perfume, essential oils or one formulated for greasy/spot-prone skin this can potentially cause irritation and in some cases, an allergic reaction.
If you have dry skin it makes sense to choose a moisturising cleanser. Try Johnson’s Daily Essentials Nourishing Cream Wash for Dry Skin £2.99.
If your skin is sensitive look for fragrance -free, hypoallergenic products. Try Aveeno Positively Radiant Gentle Exfoliating cleanser - £5.99.
Oily skin that suffers from occasional shine, but no clogged/obstructed pores, can be controlled by washing with a mild and gentle, but effective cleanser. When washing is inconvenient, an oil-controlling astringent or pre-moistened cleansing pad can be used throughout the day, as needed, to blot excess oil. Try Johnson’s Daily Essentials Oil Balancing Gel Wash for Combination Skin £2.99.
Skin prone to breakouts
Look for cleansers aimed at oily, spot prone skin - a good ingredient is Salicylic Acid which works as an exfoliant, promoting the sloughing away of dead skin cells and is able to penetrate the follicles. It encourages the shedding of dead skin cells from within the follicle, helping to keep the pores clear of cellular debris and in this way reduces the number of pore blockages and breakouts. Try Neutrogena Visibly Clear Blackhead eliminating Triple Action Cleanser £4.49.