Grooming Q&A | Combination Skin

skincare investments

Our long lost Grooming Editor Ms. Mathahle Stofile has noticed how many skin questions she gets from men, on her women’s beauty platform The Matte Project, and decided to help the rest of us by answering them here. First, the a to z on combination skin.

Q: How do you choose a range of products for your face if you have combination skin?

A: Having “combination” skin means your nose and forehead (sometimes chin) areas are  oilier than the rest of your face. It’s a common condition that confuses many when it comes to choosing face products. Nobody is born with “combination” skin so it’s definitely something that can be corrected. “Combination” skin is usually caused by the products you use and other exterior elements like climate, pollution and smoking.

Once you have identified the products that work best for your skin, my suggested routine is as follows:

1. Use a cleanser for “normal” skin all over face. 

2. Follow with a chemical exfoliator concentrating around the nose and any other congested areas. Chemical exfoliators have active ingredients (usually glycolic acid) making them more effective, yet gentler than scrubs, which can break the skin and make it more sensitive.

3. Apply your daily moisturiser. Don’t avoid the oily parts of your face as this will trigger skin to produce more oil as a way of overcompensating. Just make sure you use a cream that will balance the ph of your skin back to 5 or so.  

4. Use a retinol (Vitamin A) based serum at night. Retinol is great for skin renewal. It will retexturise your skin making it appear finer, plumper and tighter. Make sure you apply plenty of sunscreen in the morning!

You may not see immediate results in your skin’s “combination” state but in time and with you sticking to the morning and nightly routine with the right products, your skin should regulate its sebum (oil) production. The immediate satisfaction will come from feeling how cleansed your pores are. This is a benefit of proper exfoliation, your skin is now better prepared to absorb whatever you feed it.

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