The skin has a natural ability to guard itself against disease, recover from abrasions, produce new cells, and clear pimples and blotches. Try to avoid interfering with the skin’s natural ability to cure itself, and assist it only when necessary.

There’s no way to stop the natural biological process, but there are ways to keep your skin looking healthy and younger longer. To begin with, know the Five Signs of Ideal Skin:

  1. —Supple, firm
  2. —Glossy and lustrous, with oil and water content in perfect balance
  3. —Free of blemishes
  4. —Strong enough to withstand normal conditions
  5. —Healthy colored

What’s your skin type?

Knowing your skin type means being able to avoid the pain and hassle of wasted money and skin irritation. You can do a quick diagnosis yourself. (Those with especially sensitive complexions should have a more thorough analysis done by a dermatologist using a tissue sample, and should always test cosmetics on just a small patch of skin first.) Check the size of the pores and the amount of oil on your face by holding a magnifying glass over:

-Center of the forehead

The best place to determine how fine-grained, dry, or oily your skin is.

-Nostrils

The condition of the skin here will show whether or not you are washing your skin thoroughly. If not, this area will exhibit signs of trouble, such as blackheads.

-Outer corners of the eyes

These tend to be quite dry, and also show early results of wear and tear, such as wrinkles or droops. The state of your skin here reveals whether or not you have a tendency toward wrinkling.

-Under the eyes

Capillary vessels are concentrated in this area, and some people—those with allergies or users of steroids—have red and/or puffy skin here.

-Centers of the cheeks

This is a good place to examine skin tissue to see if the pores are enlarged or blocked with dirt and oil.

-Chin

Check the hollow under your lower lip to see how much oil your skin is secreting.

There are five basic skin types: Neutral, Oily, Dry, Combination, and Sensitive.

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