Almost everything can influence skin type, which is why it can be so tricky to attribute a single skin type to what you see on your face. Both external and internal elements can and do impact the way your skin looks and feels.

To effectively evaluate your skin and determine the correct skin-care routine, here are some of the factors that need to be considered: Internal Influences: Hormonal changes (pregnancy, menopause, menstrual cycle, and more all cause skin

• conditions to fluctuate from oily to breakouts, skin discolorations, and dryness) Skin disorders (rosacea, psoriasis, dermatitis, with each one posing its specific

• concerns) Genetic predisposition of skin type (oily versus dry, prone to breakouts, sensitive

• skin) Smoking (cause of necrotic skin that cannot be corrected by skin-care products)

• Medications you may be taking (some birth-control pills can increase oily skin and

• breakouts while other types can actually improve the appearance of acne) Diet (there is research showing a diet high in antioxidants and omega-3 and omega-6

• fatty acids can improve the appearance of skin) External Influences: Climate/weather (cold, warm, moist, dry) • Your skin-care routine (over-moisturizing or over-exfoliating, using irritating or dry-

• ing products, using the wrong products for your skin type can create skin problems that weren’t there before) Unprotected or prolonged sun exposure (the major cause of wrinkles and skin

• discolorations) Secondhand smoke (see above)

• Pollution (creates additional free-radical activity that damages collagen and the

• skin’s genetic stability) These complex and often overlapping circumstances all contribute to what takes place on and in your skin, which in turn determines your skin type.