What Is My Skin Type? Learn About The 6 Skin Types

We at NIVEA understand that it can be hard to assess which skin type you are, and how best to nurture skin for each type. Skin types can range in multiple forms; combination, dry, sensitive, blemished or mature, the list can seem quite bewildering. And even then it is often never clear. Skin can be defined as both mature skin and dry skin, or sensitive skin and blemished skin.

COMBINATION SKIN, DRY SKIN, NORMAL SKIN...what type of skin do I have?

NIVEA has products and advice for every type of skin. Explore the full range to see how our products can benefit you.

 

All skin can benefit from a regular, daily skincare routine targeted at its needs. Understanding your skin type is key to adopting the right skincare routine for your particular skin type. Sometimes our skin type doesn’t fall into a convenient bracket, it may straddle a few different skin types, or change depending on the season, outside factors and lifestyle changes. Read on to explore different skin types and learn more about giving your skin the care it needs with our skin type test.


Take our test to find out your skin type

Whether you have any perfect imperfections or skin concerns that really bother you, try our routine builder for a genuinely bespoke, helpful skincare routine. All you need to do is answer a few simple questions about your skin concerns and lifestyle. Our tool then analyses your unique skin features and constructs a personalised routine adapted to your needs.

What you’ll get from NIVEA Routine Builder:

  1. Bespoke skincare routine for your skin type
  2. Tailored product suggestions
  3. Problem area analysis
  4. Lifestyle suggestions
 

skin type test


Combination Skin

What skin type do I have?

SKIN TYPE 1: COMBINATION SKIN

Combination skin tends to have two skin types across the face: normal to dry skin around the cheeks and chin and oily and blemished skin around the T-zone of the forehead and nose. Combination skin tends to shine and form blemishes, particularly in the oily T-zones. By contrast, the cheek area is normal to dry. This can make your skincare routine more difficult, as you will need to look after all areas of the face.

Your T-zone needs extra attention

TIPS FOR COMBINATION SKIN

  • To cleanse your skin, oily areas need to be cleansed of oil, whilst ensuring drier areas do not dry out further. To help, ensure your skincare routine begins with a delicate cleanser (try vitamin E enriched NIVEA Refreshing Face Wash Gel), and ends with an oil-free moisturiser. A hazelnut-sized amount of moisturiser is enough, and use sparingly on the oilier T-zone area, concentrating on the drier areas. NIVEA Mattifying Day Cream is designed for combination skins, reducing shine while also hydrating those areas that need it. 
  • If you are unsure, choose a product that is especially suited for combination skin. NIVEA has a wide range of products designed for combination skins. Click here for more top tips and advice on caring for combination skin. 


Dry Skin

Skin type 2: dry skin

If your skin looks dry and flaky, it is highly likely that you have dry skin. Dry skin lacks moisture and lipids - i.e. fats. It is therefore less elastic and so feels tighter. This can even lead dry skin to begin to itch and even become sore. Dry skin is particularly susceptible to environmental influences, such as sunlight or wind. It is important to protect yourselves with sunscreen and appropriate clothing, such as sun hats. Try NIVEA Protect & Moisturise Sunscreen to help provide deep hydration to the skin whilst protection from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Restorative and hydration creams can be used to help restore the moisture stores and strengthen skin's protective barriers.

This is what dry skin is like: 

  • tight and tends to itch 
  • rough and flaky appearance 
  • reacts quickly to external influences such as temperature.

TIPS FOR DRY SKIN

Many lifestyle factors can help you alleviate the unwanted symptoms of dry skin.

  • Firstly, ensure your skincare routine is optimised to help relieve dry skin, such as avoiding harsh cleansers and using deeply hydrating moisturisers. Enriched with natural almond oil, NIVEA Nourishing Day Cream is soothing and hydrating, and with an SPF 15, will also protect dry skin from UV rays - rich dry skin types are particularly sensitive too. NIVEA Gentle Cream Wash gently purifies, cleanses and removes daily impurities, making it perfect for dry and sensitive skin.
  • Drinking at least 2 litres of still water a day will also greatly benefit your skin.
  • Day creams with a sun protection factor will help protect your skin from UV radiation, which could further dry skin out.
  • A serum is a perfect addition to your moisturising care. Care products with natural oils can help to relax your skin. Serum is a great way to target particular skin concerns and they also help prep the skin for moisturiser, allowing the skin to absorb more of its hydrating benefits. Hyaluronic acid is a boon to all skin types, but dry and sensitive skins can particularly benefit from it. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant - that is, it has the power to draw water molecules into the skin and can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. This means it can keep skin hydrated for longer and is a must have in dry skin types’ bathroom cabinets. NIVEA Cellular Filler Hyaluronic Acid Serum hydrates, refreshes and rejuvenates dry skin and other skin types, for younger looking - and more comfortable - skin.

cream for all skin types


Normal Skin

What skin type do I have?

Skin type 3: normal skin

If you are fortunate enough to have a fine-pored and even complexion, chances are that either your skin type is normal skin, or your skincare routine is perfect for your skin's needs. However, to keep its healthy appearance, normal skin needs moisture and protection too and it is important to have a regular skin care routine. The better care you take of your skin now, the more likely it is that it will stay balanced and healthy. Cleanse and moisturise your face everyday, and deeply exfoliate at least once a week to remove dirt and dead skin cells.

 

This is what normal skin is like: 

  • Fine-pored, unproblematic  
  • Well circulated and elastic
  • Does not feel tight or uncomfortable after you wash
  • No visibly oily or flaky, scaly areas
 

TIPS FOR NORMAL SKIN


Blemished Skin

What skin type do I have?

Skin type 4: blemished skin

People with blemished skin also tend to have sensitive skin and it tends to produce more sebum than necessary, an oil secretion from the sebaceous glands. This can result in blackheads, spots and acne. This is often a genetic predisposition, which stress and hormonal fluctuations are responsible for. With antibacterial cleansing and care products, you can restore your skin's natural balance. If you have particularly sensitive skin, try and find gentle and soothing products for the face, such as Daily Essentials Refreshing Face Wash Gel.

 

This is what blemished skin is like: 

  • large-pored 
  • shiny 
  • tends to develop impurities.

TIPS FOR BLEMISHED SKIN

  • It is essential to cleanse the skin before bed, particularly for those with blemished skin or acne prone skin. Makeup should also be removed in the evening, as it can block your pores overnight which will only increase issues with blemished skin. Blemished skins can benefit from a double cleanse, but be careful not to layer on too many ingredients as this can trigger outbreaks. Remove makeup and impurities with NIVEA Naturally Good Micellar Water and follow up with a gentle cleanser, such as NIVEA Rose Care Micellar Face Wash Gel.
  • Treat your skin to a gentle scrub and a face mask once a week. NIVEA® Pore Purifying 3 in 1 Wash Scrub Mask - which fights blemishes and unclogs pores - is actually a scrub and mask in one! It can also be used as a cleanser.
  • Keep your hands off: do not squeeze blackheads or spots! This can lead to acne scars or spread bacteria across the face.
  • Blemished skin can be exacerbated by dryness, so don’t be tempted to skip this step. To help reduce any shining on the face, try a matting day cream such as NIVEA Mattifying Day Cream, whose lightweight formula balances the skin’s own moisture level. 


Sensitive Skin

What skin type do I have?

Skin type 5: sensitive skin

Sensitive skin reacts more to external influences, such as; stress, dry air from heating systems, strong winds or UV light. If the skin is thrown out of balance, it feels tight, itchy and dry and develops redness. Sensitive skin can also be a leading contribution to dry skin, blemished skin, acne or blackheads. Sensitive skin therefore requires extra special care to calm it and strengthen its barriers, to help make it more resistant. 

 

This is what sensitive skin is like:

  • Is sensitive to environmental influences such as the sun
  • Is tight and itchy
  • Is often red or has broken capillaries 
  • Blushes or flushes easily 
  • Dry patches
  • Sensitive to fragranced products
  • Skin can break out easily
 

 

Tips for sensitive skin

  • Choose a cream that provides protection against harmful environmental influences and use an SPF. Sweep your face clean with Dexpanthenol-rich NIVEA Sensitive Cleansing Milk that is specifically made for sensitive skin, helping to reduce the three main signs of sensitive skin - redness, tightness, dryness - and follow up with soothing NIVEA Soothing Day Cream contains SPF15.  On sunny days, or days when you are outside for longer, up your sun care game with NIVEA Protect & Dry Touch Refreshing Mist SPF30.
  • Gently dab your face with a towel after cleansing it rather than rubbing it vigorously.
  • Choose perfume-free products: fragrances can cause skin irritation. 
  • Pay attention to your diet – hot spices are not good for your skin.
     


Mature Skin

What skin type do I have?

Skin type 6: mature skin

As we grow older, lots of different processes take place in the skin that change its appearance, structure and even how it feels. This includes reduced cell activity, slower regeneration, lower collagen production or damage caused by UV radiation. Mature skin can lack moisture and elasticity, which is often a cause of dry skin in later years of life. With innovative care products you can reduce lines, wrinkles and pigment spots. You can help to reduce undesired effects of mature skin from appearing earlier by using anti-ageing products such as day creams and night creams as early as possible. 

 

This is what mature skin is like: 

  • Less elastic
  • Lacks moisture 
  • Lines, wrinkles or pigment spots are visible.
 

TIPS FOR MATURE SKIN

  • Make sure you use enough sun protection: too much UV radiation makes your skin age prematurely. Apply sunscreen, or a moisturiser with SPF, daily. Even if you’re not heading outside, blue light from screens can have a dehydrating and damaging effect on the skin. This extra barrier can prevent further premature damage. Try NIVEA Q10 Power Anti-Wrinkle + Firming Day Cream which is nourishing, rejuvenating and protecting all in one. 
  • Avoid lifestyle habits that accelerate the skin’s ageing process as much as possible, such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and excessive sugary or fatty food consumption.
  • Use a special eye care cream: expression lines around the eyes are the first to appear, often nicknamed "laughter lines". Gently dab NIVEA Q10 Power Anti-Wrinkle + Firming Eye Cream nightly to hydrate and soothe. 

cream for all skin types

cream for all skin types

  • Moisturising masks with high-quality oils nurture your skin, and will leave your skin feeling well pampered and more relaxed.
  • Choose creams which support cell regeneration in your skin, such as our NIVEA Hyaluron Cellular Filler Anti-Age Day Cream and pay particular attention to your nighttime routine. The skin restores while you sleep and this is the time to maximise the benefits of skin care ingredients. NIVEA Q10 Power 60+ Night Cream contains Q10 contains a powerhouse of ingredients designed to replenish and recharge mature skins overnight. 


How do I find out what is my skin type?

If you’re still not clear about ‘what is my skin type?’, then a quick test can help you understand your skin type better. All you need is a mirror, a cleanser and 30 minutes: 

 

Wash your face with a gentle cleanser. Pat dry and don’t apply any serums, moisturisers etc. After 30 minutes, check your face in the mirror:

  • If it is shiny all over, your skin type is likely to be oily
  • If your T-zone - that is your forehead, nose and chin - is shiny, it’s likely you have combination skin
  • Does it feel tight or is it flaky? This sounds like dry skin
  • And if your skin isn’t noticeable shiny, feels well hydrated and looks smooth, you mostly like have normal skin

The blotting paper method is another way to determine different skin types, particularly oily and dry skins. For this one you need blotting paper (great if you have oily skin for a super quick fix). Gently pat the blotting paper over your face. Once done, hold it to the light. If there is little or no oil, you are likely to have oily skin. If the blotting paper picked up oil from the T-zone, then it looks likely it is combination, and if it’s saturated in oil, your skin type is probably oily. 

woman cleansing face

myNIVEA

5 REASONS TO JOIN OUR LOYALTY CLUB

20% OFF YOUR FIRST ONLINE ORDER

Sign up to myNIVEA for 20% off your first online shop order. You’ll also be the first to hear about new products and get the best discounts too.

REVIEW PRODUCTS FOR FREE!

Join our review panel and test NIVEA products throughout the year.

A BIRTHDAY TREAT

Fancy a Birthday surprise? Sign up for a little something arriving in your inbox.

EXCLUSIVE COMPETITIONS

Opportunities to win NIVEA products throughout the year.

NEWS AND ADVICE STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX

Receive personalised skincare advice and inspiration.