How do I Choose a Moisturizer for Combination Skin?

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  • Written By: B. Miller
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 30 August 2019
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Combination skin is characterized by oiliness on the nose, forehead, and possibly chin, with dryness on the cheeks. It can be difficult to manage because it seems as if one might need two separate moisturizers. This may not be the case, however, and the best moisturizer for combination skin may be one intended for oily skin.

In general, the best moisturizer for combination skin is one that is oil-free. There is no need to put a moisturizer that contains oil on dry cheeks, and it will be virtually completely useless on the oily zone of the nose and forehead. Unless skin is very dry on the cheeks, it is a good idea to just choose a gentle moisturizer for sensitive skin. It is also a good idea to avoid moisturizers containing any acne treatment ingredients, such as salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, because these will be far too drying on the cheeks.

When you are choosing a moisturizer for combination skin, it is important to choose one with sunscreen. It should be at least SPF 15 or higher, and should always be worn when spending any time outside. Sun damage can cause wrinkles, sun spots, or even skin cancer, and can make any skin problems worse. There are many moisturizers designed specifically for combination skin that are intended to gently moisturize without increasing oil production.


Aside from choosing the best moisturizer for combination skin, there are some other ways to deal with this skin type. It is a good idea to wash the face twice a day with a gentle cleanser, but no more frequently than that, because too-frequent washing can cause overproduction of oil. If skin gets oily in the afternoon, gently wiping the face with a damp cloth may be better than washing with cleanser.

When applying moisturizer for combination skin, alter application methods based on your skin's needs. For instance, you may apply moisturizer to the cheeks twice a day, at morning and night, but only apply moisturizer to the oily areas in the morning. If skin does not appear to need moisturization, skip it at night. Makeup may also clog the pores and cause oily skin, so be sure to choose cosmetics that are designed to be compatible with sensitive, acne-prone skin. In addition, some people find that eating certain foods or certain hormonal changes cause their skin to get oily, so take note of that if skin has recently had a drastic change.


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Post 3

@pleonasm - Combination skin by definition means that you can compare it on your own face though. I have a very oily nose and forehead but my eyebrows and cheeks tend to flake if I don't moisturize them regularly.

I prefer to use a natural moisturizer and I only put it on after cleansing my face, which seems to do the trick for both skin types.

Post 2

@clintflint - It probably also depends on where you live, what the water is like in your area and how much pollution you get exposed to every day. It's likely you aren't wearing much makeup either, since that requires cleanser to maintain.

My suggestion to anyone who is having trouble finding a decent routine for their skin, whether because it's combination, or just difficult, is to go to a salon with a good reputation and ask for a consultation. Don't let them pressure you into buying anything, but listen hard to what they have to say about skin types and what needs to be done for them.

I suspect most people have trouble with their skin routines because they don't really

know what kind of skin they have or what it needs. It's hard to judge whether you have truly oily skin unless you can compare it to "normal" skin and since hardly anyone walks around without having worked to get their skin looking normal, it can be difficult for an individual to judge.
Post 1

I have very oily skin on parts of my face and I'm prone to redness because of this. But I've found the best cleanser I can use is basically just ordinary soap. If I use anything more fancy than that, my skin tends to break out and get dry at the same time. It took me a while to realize this, since I was so used to using products and I assumed I just had to find the right one.

As my skin is aging it's starting to settle down even more, so I suspect eventually I'll have to start using a moisturizer. But right now, for the most part, my skin takes care of itself.

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