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What’s the Best Skincare Routine for Combination Skin?

Expert skincare advice for those who feel both dry and oily!

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What’s the Best Skincare Routine for Combination Skin?
Written byAmelia CranstounContent Editor
Start your 2 minute skin quiz today and one of our aestheticians will create a personalised skincare routine for you!Take the skin quiz

Achieving radiant, healthy skin is a goal that many of us aspire to, but the path to flawless skin isn't always straightforward, especially when you have combination skin. This skin type can be challenging to care for because it exhibits characteristics of both oily and dry skin. However, with the right skincare routine tailored to your specific needs, you can enjoy the best of both worlds: a balanced, clear, and glowing complexion. In this blog, we'll guide you through building a skincare routine for combination skin, including what to do, what to use, and what to avoid.

Understanding Combination Skin 

Combination skin typically means that some areas of your face are oily, while others are dry or normal. Commonly, the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) tends to be oilier, while the cheeks are drier. The key to an effective skincare routine for combination skin is maintaining balance.

What Causes Combination Skin?

The oily areas 

The oily area of the face is caused by an overproduction of sebum (our skin’s natural oil) in the skin. This area is recognised by enlarged pores, and excessive oil or shine to the skin.

Sebum plays an important role in keeping the skin moisturised by locking in hydration. However, when the sebaceous glands work overtime and produce excess oil the skin can become congested and more prone to blemishes such as blackheads, whiteheads and pimples. If the excessive oil production is left untreated, the skin can develop spots and acne. 

The dry areas 

The dry area is typically located on the cheeks and caused by an underproduction of sebum, resulting in a lack of oils in the outer layers. In healthy skin, these oils trap moisture in the skin and keep it supple and hydrated. In dry skin, the lack of oils leads to the skin barrier becoming impaired as the skin cells are not bound together as effectively, which can result in tiny cracks forming on the skin’s surface. This leads to accelerated water loss through the skin, which can dry the skin out further, as well as sometimes causing it to become flaky.

An impaired barrier also means substances can get into the skin more easily, and ingredients that didn’t irritate when the barrier was intact may now irritate, so we need to be extra careful with our skincare if we are experiencing this. 

Building a Skincare Routine for Combination Skin

Cleansing: Start with a Clean Slate 

Begin your skincare routine with a gentle cleanser that effectively removes dirt, oil, and makeup without stripping the skin of its natural oils. Look for a sulfate-free, pH-balanced cleanser.

Top Tip: Avoid over-cleansing, as this can lead to excessive dryness in the drier areas of your face. Aim to cleanse twice a day – once in the morning and once before bedtime.

Renude Recommends: CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

Exfoliation: Remove Dead Skin Cells 

Exfoliation is crucial for combination skin but don’t be tempted to use harsh ingredients to mitigate oily skin. If your skin can tolerate it, use a chemical exfoliant like alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) or beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) to help slough off dead skin cells, unclog pores, and balance skin texture. 

Ingredients to Use: Glycolic acid, salicylic acid, retinoids

Ingredients to Avoid: Harsh physical scrubs can irritate the skin and exacerbate dryness or oiliness.

Renude Recommends: CORSX AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid 

Serums and Treatments: Targeted Care 

To address specific skin concerns, like acne, fine lines, or pigmentation, incorporate serums or treatments into your routine. Choose products with active ingredients designed for your needs.

Ingredients to Use: Retinol for anti-ageing, niacinamide for balancing oil production, and vitamin C for brightening.

Ingredients to Avoid: Fragrance or irritants if you have sensitive areas.

Renude Recommends: Sachi Skin Pro Resilience Serum 

Moisturise: Hydrate and Balance 

For combination skin, opt for a lightweight, non-comedogenic moisturiser. Apply a bit more in drier areas and a little less in the oilier T-zone. This approach helps maintain the skin's balance.

Ingredients to Use: Hyaluronic acid, glycerin.

Ingredients to Avoid: Heavy or pore-clogging ingredients like mineral oil.

Renude Recommends: Bioderma Hydrabio Gel-creme

Sun Protection: Shield Your Skin 

Protect your skin from the harmful effects of UV rays by using a broad-spectrum sunscreen daily. Look for a sunscreen formula that is oil-free or designed for the face to prevent excess shine.

Top Tip: Make sunscreen a non-negotiable step in your skincare routine, as UV exposure can worsen the appearance of combination skin.

Renude Recommends: SVR Sun Secure SPF 50

Night time Care: Repair and Rejuvenate 

At night, give your skin time to recover and repair. Apply a richer moisturiser or a hydrating night cream to the dry areas, and continue using your treatment products.

Top Tip: Consider a hydrating overnight mask for extra moisture in dry areas.

Renude Recommends: Medik8 Advanced Night Restore Cream 

Avoid Overloading: Less Is More 

When building a skincare routine for combination skin, remember that overloading your skin with products can lead to irritation. Stick to the essentials and introduce new products gradually.

Listen to Your Skin: Adapt as Needed 

Your skin can change with the seasons, your diet, and other factors. Pay attention to how it reacts to your routine and adjust your products and frequency.

Top Tip: Keep a skincare journal to track changes and make informed decisions.

Creating your routine can feel overwhelming when faced with 100s of products and ingredients. If you feel daunted by the prospect but want a balanced, healthy complexion without the hassle, Renude can help provide you with independent advice.  

We’ll personalise your skincare routine to meet your unique needs and offer ongoing advice as your skin adjusts to new products and ingredients. You’ll achieve a beautiful, glowing complexion in 6 weeks (94% of our members see an improvement in their skin in this time)

Start your skin consultation today to get matched with a Renude skin expert who can help you to better understand your unique skin, and choose a personalised skincare routine that works for you.

Amelia CranstounContent Editor
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Amelia CranstounContent Editor
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