OLD TRADITIONAL SKIN TYPE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM
In the early 1900s, cosmetics entrepreneur Helena Rubinstein claimed that dry, oily, combination, or sensitive were the best words to label what could be considered the four fundamental types of skin. For the ensuing century, these categories have been used to characterize skin types.
These traditional designations for skin types are incomplete and inadequate descriptions of skin, thus providing insufficient guidance for practitioners and consumers to select the most suitable products. A person does not have simply dry or sensitive skin. The skin types identified by Rubinstein tell only a fraction of the story.
DERMAL DIAGNOSIS SKIN TYPE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM
An innovative approach to classifying skin type, the Dermal Diagnosis treats two of Rubinstein’s categories as one of four parameters to characterize facial skin types: dry or oily; sensitive or resistant; pigmented or nonpigmented; and high risk for aging skin vs. lower risk. Sensitive skin is further categorized as acne prone, rosacea prone, allergic/eczema skin or general sensitive/stinging skin.
Evaluating skin based on all four parameters yields 20 potential skin-type combinations. The Dermal Diagnosis is an online questionnaire that is designed to determine baseline skin type identifications and assessments after significant life changes. All four parameters must be considered for patients to accurately self-assess their skin type or for practitioners to be able to make appropriate skin care recommendations to their patients. For example, a person who has aging, dry, pigmented, rosacea prone skin would require markedly different skin care products or treatments than an individual who has aging and oily skin with no inflammation or pigmentation.
The biology of various skin phenotypes, such as oily, dry, acne-prone, rosacea-prone, allergy-prone, dyspigmentation, and photodamage, affects the interaction and efficacy of cosmeceutical ingredients. In order to maximize outcomes with cosmeceuticals, there are many steps that should be taken to properly match a skin care regimen with the proper skin phenotype.
Oily skin types with no inflammatory condition skin have a strong skin barrier with an extra layer of sebum to prevent penetration of ingredients; therefore, individuals with this skin type require an increased concentration of active ingredients or penetration enhancers to demonstrate efficacy.
Dry, skin types with inflammatory conditions on the other hand, have an impaired barrier that allows increased penetration of ingredients; these individuals are more prone to inflammation. In the ADPR type (Aging.Dry.Pigmentation.Rosacea), the skin-lightening ingredients and antiaging ingredients that are required should not be ones that will aggravate inflammation. Lower concentrations can be used because of the defect in the skin barrier.