Combination skin poses some difficulties when choosing facial products. Oily patches on the forehead, the nose and surrounding areas and the chin signal combination skin. You might also have dry skin around your eyes and on your cheeks. If you have combination skin, some facial products can make the problems worse and you should avoid using them.
You should avoid any cleanser that dries your skin. This includes most bar soaps and acne-type facial washes. Paula Begoun, of the Cosmetic Cop website, recommends using gel-based or foaming cleansers on combination skin. You should clean your skin twice a day, with special attention at night to remove makeup or any oily build-up from the day.
Many exfoliating products used for skin facials are too harsh for combination skin. Avoid products with hard grains of material or chemicals. Both can irritate your skin, causing dryness where you don't want it and excess oil production in your t-zone oily area. Instead, choose products with exfoliating ingredients, such as hydroxy acids.
Alcohol finds its way into many skin care products. For combination skin, you might feel temptation to use alcohol-based toners or astringents on the oily areas. Your face will not thank you for this. Alcohol will dry your entire face and can trigger the oily areas to overproduce oil in an attempt to balance your skin. Toners do have a place in your skin care routine, but opt for more gentle, alcohol-free varieties.
Facial masks lift impurities from the skin and tighten it. Masks do tend to dry facial skin. Avoid using a mask all over your face, especially in dry areas. You can, however, use a mask only on the oily areas of skin. The mask should be left on for about 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.
Oil-based moisturizers will only add to the problems of combination skin. The oils will build up and make the pores in your t-zone clog and look larger. Though you should moisturize your face daily as a part of your skin facial routine, according to the Cleveland Clinic, use a water-soluble, oil-free moisturizer. If the skin around your eyes tends to dry and is prone to wrinkle, use a separate moisturizer for the area. You should also avoid using an oil-based sunscreen. You still need sun protection, so look for makeup with sun protection, or a sensitive-skin, oil-free moisturizer that includes it.