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The un-intimidating guide to recognizing your skin type

BY Laura Casciola

Only you know what it’s like to live in your skin. You know it in and out (literally). You own it. But when asked about your skin type, are you clear on what kind you really have?

Maybe you are. And if that’s the case, you can just skim through the rest of this (I won’t be offended). If not, keep reading for a breakdown of each skin type, what it means to have it, and what’s best for it. Plus you’ll get familiar with a few other questions on our skin quiz and how to go about answering them to get matched with your perfect skin set.

Ok– skin types.

Do you have dry skin?

Any skin type can get dry from time to time. It would be surprising if you never felt the need to moisturize or never felt chapped around your lips in the cold months. But these are all situational– none of these sensations equate to having chronically dry skin. In a future post, we’ll outline the difference between dry and dehydrated skin. 

If you have dry skin, you’ve probably experienced some of the following:

  • A need to moisturize multiple times a day 
  • Rough-feeling patches that may look flaky or scaly 
  • A feeling of tightness 
  • Having had consistent patches of dryness (even if it was in the past)

If these ring a bell, select dry skin in the skin quiz to ensure that your formulation is packed with  hydrating ingredients.

Do you have oily skin?

I have places, on my face especially, that are always oily (like my nose and the crease in my chin). But that doesn’t mean that I have ‘oily skin’. The checklist:

  • Your face normally appears shiny or greasy
  • Your makeup seems to ‘slide off’ more quickly than it should
  • The pores on your face are noticeable– like, you can see them pretty clearly
  • You have blackheads and pimples on a regular bases (more often than not)

Sound like you? Select oily skin in the skin quiz to get ingredients that regulate sebum (skin’s natural oil) production in your formulas. 

Do you have combination skin?

It’s what it sounds like– a little bit of this, a little bit of that, in different places. Super common. But can also be really confusing for choosing products. What if the skin on your forehead is really different than the skin on your cheeks? How do you select the right treatments? Here are some signs of having combination skin:

  • You related to both of the last two skin types you read above
  • Your skin is usually oily in the ‘T-zone’, aka the forehead, nose, and chin
  • Your skin is usually dry or normal in your cheeks, under your eyes, and everywhere else

Yes? Select combination skin in the skin quiz to get a bit of everything you need, balanced for you, only, by our experts.

Do you have balanced skin?

What’s the difference between balanced and combination? You probably have balanced skin if you:

  • Don’t usually experience breakouts
  • Don’t feel that your skin gets sensitive when trying new products, or with changing weather
  • Don’t have many lines or wrinkles
  • Don’t feel the need to moisturize often, or blot oil often

Lucky you. Choose balanced skin in the skin quiz to receive ingredients that keep your skin where it’s at through weather, age, stress, sweat, etc. 

What about makeup use?

So, yes, that. Your skin is how it is naturally, and then it’s also affected by what goes on it, and in it. It’s the old nature vs nurture thing. We made sure to include the level of makeup use in our skin quiz so that we didn’t miss anything about your routine, and your skin needs.

In our quiz, we ask how often and how much you use makeup. But that’s all relative, right? Let’s break down what we mean by make up usage.


Bare-faced beauty. Au naturalé. You’ve got the easy-breezy look and we love that for you. 

A little

Just a dab or two! You like to fill in your eyebrows, add a few flicks of mascara and dab gloss on your lips before leaving the house and it only takes you a few minutes to feel all done.

A decent amount

You’re a foundation, eyeshadow, highlighter kind of girl and you look freaking fantastic if we do say so ourselves.

Full coverage

Sheesh! You know exactly what you’re doing. You contour. You blend. Your sponge is one of the 3 things you’d take on a desert island. Your selfies are f i r e.


So now you know. Our skin quiz won’t throw you any curveballs and you’re totally well-equipped in answering it quickly and efficiently to get your custom, complete skin set (of 3 products) formulated perfectly for your face only. Our experts are going to take all of your answers, and along with creating a custom formulation, they will recommend product formats for you too– there are a bunch of options.  We recommend giving your new skin products around 30 days before determining  whether or not they ‘work for you’. And then one last thing– remember your skin type, your skin needs, and your #skingoals will change over time. Because, that’s life. Your skin is no different. The good news is you can change your formula by changing the answers to your skin quiz whenever you want! We highly recommend getting used to being in control. Our team (MIT scientists, formulation chemists etc) have been hard at work for over 3 years designing, developing and formulating skincare – can’t wait for you all to try them!