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All skin types benefit from the use of some type of moisturizer.

DRY SKIN needs a heavier, oil-based moisturizer that will absorb completely into the skin, leaving it feeling soft and supple. Oils are more effective than creams at preventing water evaporation. Look for the ingredients urea or propylene glycol, chemicals that keep skin moist.

NORMAL SKIN has a healthy moisture balance. Water-based moisturizers containing lightweight oils, such as acetyl alcohol, or silicone-derived ingredients, will help maintain healthy, normal skin.

OILY AND COMBINATION SKIN types benefit most from an oil-free, water-based moisturizer. Oil-free products are made from synthetic chemicals and contain little to no oils or animal fat. If you have oily skin, use all moisturizers sparingly.

Look for products labeled “non-comedogenic,” which means they are formulated to prevent clogged pores. Test moisturizers to find one that leaves a matte finish on the skin. This will minimize shine and the appearance of large pores.

Tips for Moisturizing

Use a fast-absorbing eye cream under concealer to help skin look smooth, not creepy. The skin around the eyes is more delicate than the rest of the face. For puffiness and wrinkles under the eye, try using a richer formula containing Shea butter or beeswax at night.

If your skin is very dry and dehydrated, use a super-rich moisturizing balm with ingredients like petrolatum, glycerin, or Shea butter for better texture and for smoother application of foundation. Warm the balm in your palms before applying it to your face.

Layer different textures of moisturizers to achieve maximum results. For instance, use an absorbing cream with balms or oils.

If you have oily skin, try using an oil-control lotion on the forehead and nose to tone down shine. Oil-free formulas hydrate while helping to control overactive oil glands. Foundation applied over the lotion will hold better, too.

For dry, chapped, or cracked lips, apply a balm formulated specifically for lips.

Try patting a moisturizing balm onto your cheeks after completing your makeup. It will give a glow to your face and help the foundation look natural.

To create your own sheer, tinted moisturizer, mix face lotion with foundation.

These tests will help you to determine the ratio of oil to water in a moisturizing product.

Apply moisturizer to your skin. If the skin under the moisturizer is warm, there is a greater percentage of oil in the product. If the area is cool, there is a greater percentage of water. The science behind this is that evaporation cools, and water evaporates. Oil does not evaporate and therefore traps heat in the body.

Put a small amount of moisturizer on a tissue, and hold it over a light-bulb. Products with higher oil content will melt. The wider the area of melted oil, the greater the percentage of oil in the moisturizer.

SENSITIVE SKIN needs a moisturizer that does not contain fragrances or dyes and is designed for this skin type.

EXTRA DRY AND MATURE SKIN requires more moisture. Nourishing oils, dense creams, and balms are formulated specifically for both these skin types. These products help to temporarily plump up the skin, making it appear smoother and reducing the appearance of fine lines. Look for petrolatum-based moisturizers that also contain ingredients such as lactic acid or alpha Hydroxy acids, which help to prevent dry skin.

Specially formulated moisturizers are needed for the area under and around the eye. The skin surrounding the eyes has smaller pores, is thinner than the rest of the facial skin, and is more sensitive. It is important to keep this area as hydrated as possible. Products on the market target specific problems.

Before you go shopping for an eye cream, decide whether you want an eye cream that hydrates and prepares for concealer, or an overnight cream that is rich and emollient. Antiwrinkle or anti-aging creams contain caffeine, retinol, alpha hydroxy acids, or vitamin C.

Antidarkening creams contain vitamin K or hydroquinone. Also decide if you want two different creams,
one for night and the other for day. To avoid possible irritation of the eye, look for an eye cream that does not contain fragrance and has a pH close to that of tears (about 7.5).

Lips are often the first area of the face to wrinkle. Dry and chapped lips are a clear sign that you need to drink more water. While hydrating the body is the first step toward beautiful lips, there are many products that help keep them plump and smooth.

For personal use, have on hand two facial moisturizers, one lighter than the other. On those days when the skin needs more moisture, apply the lighter product first, and then layer the heavier moisturizer over that.

Also find a moisturizing product formulated specifically for the under-eye area, lip balm, body moisturizer, and sunscreen. As your skin changes in response to lifestyle, season, or climate, you can treat it with the right hydrating product. Makeup artists carry a full range of moisturizers in their kits.

Moisturizer Application

Once the face is thoroughly cleansed and toned, and while it is still slightly damp, apply moisturizer using a clean sponge or your fingers. (Note: dense balms will work only on dry skin.) If you are using your hands to apply any makeup products, always wash them thoroughly so you don’t transfer oils and bacteria to your face. Bacteria on the hands or makeup tools often cause breakouts.

Use about a nickel-size amount of moisturizer.
Warm the balm or moisturizer between your palms. With firm, upward strokes, gently press the product into the skin until it is completely absorbed.

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