Skin conditions vs skin types
The key difference between a skin type and a skin condition? A skin type is permanent while a skin condition is temporary.
We all have a skin type that can fall into any of the following categories:
- Dry skin
- Combination skin
- Oily skin
- Normal skin
Each of these skin types has certain characteristics. For example, oily skin is characterised by large pores and excess sebum production.
Your skin type should guide your core skincare routine and the types of products you use daily, including makeup and SPF.
Skin conditions, on the other hand, are temporary conditions that can affect all skin types. For example, oily skin can become dehydrated while dry skin can be affected by hormonal acne.
Some facial skin conditions are more likely to present on certain skin types. For example, sensitive skin is more prone to developing flare-ups of rosacea.
Depending on the facial skin condition you’re treating, you may expand your core routine (based on skin type) to tackle problems specific to your skin condition.
Let’s take a look at the most common skin conditions that can affect you, no matter your skin type.
Water is vital for plump, healthy-looking skin.
Dehydration is one of the most common facial conditions all skin types can experience.
Put simply, dehydrated skin lacks water due to excessive transepidermal water loss (TEWL). It differs in this way to dry skin conditions, which lack oil.
It’s helpful to understand how the layers of your skin work to see why TEWL occurs and skin becomes dehydrated.
Allow us to explain.
Your skin has two key layers: the epidermis (the top layer) and the dermis (the lower layer).
Each of these layers is composed of various sub-layers and moisture can be found throughout all layers, with the most moisture found in the outer, protective layer - the stratum corneum.
If you were to look at your stratum corneum, also called the skin barrier, under a microscope, you’d see that it is structured in a similar way to a brick wall. It is composed of layers of cells (the bricks) with mortar (lipids) in between. The lipids hold the cells together. The function of your skin barrier is to trap moisture in and keep allergens and irritants out.
What causes dehydrated skin?
If your barrier becomes damaged and lacks sufficient lipids to hold the cells together, cracks form in the ‘wall’. Moisture seeps through the cracks, this is TEWL in action, and skin becomes dehydrated.
So, what causes damage to the skin barrier in the first place? Over-exfoliation, temperature fluctuations, harsh weather, sun damage, stress and even lack of sleep can all lead to a weakened barrier.
Symptoms of dehydrated skin
If you’re dealing with a case of dehydrated skin, you’ll see some or all of these signs:
- Dryness around the temples, nose, and mouth
- Tightness, particularly around areas of wrinkles
- Flakiness all over the face
- An increase in fine lines and wrinkles
How to treat dehydrated skin
Thankfully, dehydration is one of the relatively easy facial skin conditions to treat. It’s all about focusing on strengthening the skin barrier and using humectant ingredients.
Humectant ingredients pull moisture from the air and also the deeper skin layers and deliver it to thirsty skin cells on the surface.
Best ingredients for dehydrated skin
Rescue parched skin with a combination of these hero hydrating ingredients to a) rebuild the skin barrier and b) deliver moisture to the skin - humectants.
- Hyaluronic Acid: With the ability to hold 1000 x its weight in water, hyaluronic acid is a powerful humectant ingredient.
- Hemp seed oil: Excellent for restoring dehydrated skin, hemp seed oil is rich in essential fatty acids that help to restore the skin’s natural barrier function
- Niacinamide: Strengthens the skin barrier
- Aloe vera: Moisture promoting
A brilliant face oil for dehydrated skin, our Oil Infusion Serum is infused with 14 botanical oils that have been carefully chosen to repair a compromised barrier and get your skin glowing.
Our Multi-Active Hydrating Face Serum is the only serum you need for dehydrated skin. Encapsulated retinol helps to stimulate cellular turnover, while 4 weights of Hyaluronic Acid intensely hydrate and plump the skin.
Rosacea is one of the skin conditions many people struggle with and, depending on the severity, it may leave you feeling less-than-confident and take a toll on your mental health.
A chronic inflammatory skin condition, rosacea causes deep flushing episodes when skin becomes red, hot, and uncomfortable. It can also trigger the appearance of pimple-like bumps and, in severe cases, can cause issues with eyesight. Those with sensitive skin or dry skin conditions can be more prone to rosacea fares.
The symptoms of rosacea shouldn’t be ignored. These facial skin conditions become progressively worse if left untreated and can lead to serious eye health complications.
Symptoms of rosacea
Symptoms can vary with intensity. In the early stages, flushing episodes come and go (depending on the trigger) but eventually, redness can become permanent if not managed.
What do you see with rosacea?
- Hot, uncomfortable flushing episodes which can persist for hours
- Redness - usually across the cheeks and nose
- Broken, visible blood vessels that can get bigger over time
- Bumps known as (papulopustular) rosacea - often confused with acne
- Stinging sensations
- Skin can look dry and dull
If the eyes have been affected by rosacea (known as ocular rosacea) symptoms include
- Impaired vision
- Bloodshot eyes
- Watery eyes
Fair-skinned women are more prone to develop rosacea facial skin conditions, especially between the ages of 30 and 50, but this is one of the skin conditions that can affect anyone.
What causes rosacea?
Exactly what causes this inflammatory skin condition on the face (why it develops in the first place) is still not fully understood. There is a genetic predisposition for rosacea; if someone in your family has it, chances are higher that you may also develop the condition.
What we do know more about are the triggers for rosacea. While triggers can vary between individuals, common reasons you may find your rosacea flaring up include:
- Spicy foods
- Hot showers, baths, and saunas
- Sun exposure
- Alcohol - particularly red wine
- Strenuous exercise
- Certain medications
- Over-exfoliation - leaves the skin barrier weak and susceptible to flare-ups
- Indoor heating
- Some skincare products
As you can likely tell from the above list, many things that heat up the body intensify the symptoms of this skin condition on the face. Heat causes vascular changes on the skin’s surface where blood vessels dilate and become more pronounced.
How to treat rosacea
As a chronic condition, there is no cure for rosacea, but there are ways to get flare-ups under control. The First step for looking at treating your rosacea should always be to consult your doctor or dermatologist for a full medical assessment. Doing so will help keep symptoms from worsening.
Understand your triggers
Pay attention to what sets the redness off. It might be that glass of cabernet sauvignon, spicy chicken curry or having the indoor heating turned right up. Not everyone dealing with rosacea will react with the same intensity to common triggers. Discover what your triggers are and do your best to minimise or avoid them altogether.
Follow a gentle and basic skincare routine
A gentle, simple skincare routine is a must for rosacea skin conditions. During a period of flare-ups, less is definitely more when it comes to your routine. Don’t overload your already-fragile skin with layers of product; stick to a core routine - cleanse, moisturise, and SPF (AM).
Simple tips for managing rosacea at home:
- Gently cleanse your skin with a gentle cleanser
- Washing your face after sweating or strenuous physical activity
- Avoiding harsh skincare products and cosmetics
- Using sunscreen to protect against sun damage
When your skin has settled, consider adding a serum with barrier-strengthening and redness-reducing properties. The weaker your skin barrier, the more reactive and frequent flare-ups will be.
Choose gentle products that won’t disturb the healthy oil / moisture balance of the barrier. This means avoiding harsh cleansers - the kind that leaves your skin feeling tight after cleansing.
During reactive periods, also steer clear of strong active ingredients like retinol, AHAs, and even Vitamin C. While these active ingredients can certainly benefit rosacea-prone skin, during a flare-up they’re best avoided to prevent further aggravation.
Best skincare ingredients for rosacea
Look for ingredients that will a) calm inflammation and redness and b) strengthen the skin barrier.
- Vitamin B5 (panthenol)
- Hyaluronic acid
- Hemp seed oil
- Aloe vera
- Azelaic acid
- Green tea extract
When skin has recovered from the intensity of the flare-up, consider gradually adding active ingredients back into your routine.
Dealing with severe rosacea? It may be time to see a dermatologist who can provide further treatment options including oral medications and skin therapies like laser therapy.
Keep your Rosacea routine simple with Vela Days
Step 1: Lipid Complex Cleansing Balm cleanses the skin while delivering moisture, which can help with bumps, redness, and other symptoms of rosacea
Step 2: Active Compound Facial Serum both defends and nourishes, effectively dosing the skin with all the nutrients and vitamins it needs to look its best.
Step 3: Oil Infusion Serum moisturises the skin with hemp seed oil, diminishing common skin irritations including rosacea.
Acne is one of the most common skin conditions for teenagers and adults and, depending on the severity, can be a challenge to get under control.
The different types of acne
While all acne has the same root cause - blocked pores that harbour breakout-forming bacteria - symptoms can vary from mild (non-inflammatory) to severe (inflammatory) acne.
Mild acne: Blackheads and whiteheads. The pore has become blocked and is either open and exposed to the air causing a black tip (blackhead) or closed and filled with pus (whitehead).
Severe acne: Cysts and nodules are considered inflammatory lesions. They’re usually highly inflamed and painful to touch. This type of acne can lead to scarring and hyperpigmentation and generally requires a combination of professional and at-home treatments for the best outcome.
Excess oil on the skin’s surface is the precursor for blocked pores. Your skin may overproduce sebum for numerous reasons: hormonal fluctuations (puberty and pregnancy, for example), stress, certain foods, medication or simply because you have an oily skin type.
Acne scarring and marks
If not treated properly, the aftermath of acne can leave behind textural changes (scars) and discolouration known as erythema (redness) or hyperpigmentation (brown spots).
Scarring is caused by trauma to the cells which damages tissue and changes the overall texture of the skin. The skin gets to work to repair the damage with new collagen fibres but often overproduces collagen, causing raised scars, or doesn't produce enough which leads to pitted scars.
Trauma is accelerated by picking breakouts; so be mindful of not popping and squeezing pimples.
The aftermath of acne inflammation can also cause the skin to produce extra pigment - called melanin - leading to darkened spots of hyperpigmentation. Sun exposure and certain medications can also make the discolouration worse.
In the case of erythema, the blood vessels dilate during wound healing and become more visible as red marks.
The best at-home acne routine should focus on balancing oil production, keeping skin hydrated and clearing pores of buildup. If you are taking prescription medication or having professional treatments, speak to your skin specialist about how they work with your at-home routine.
Steer clear of cleansers designed to strip the skin of all oil - this will only trigger your skin to create more sebum. Instead, use a gentle, moisture-promoting cleanser that keeps skin hydrated and comfortable, not dry and tight.
We recommend: Oil-to-Milk Face Cleanser - 3 in 1
Moisturise with a facial oil
Oil on oil? It might sound crazy but hear us out! Non-comedogenic botanical oils won’t block pores and can help keep skin hydrated and reduce inflammation to assist in clearing acne.
Oils for acne skin conditions include:
- Hemp seed oil
- Jojoba oil
- Sunflower seed oil
We recommend: Moisturising Active Oil Serum which can be used with a moisturiser or on its own.
Keep pores clear with regular exfoliation.
Salicylic acid and glycolic acid are well suited to acne-prone skin. Particularly salicylic acid as its oil soluble properties means it does a great job of removing excess oil and also regulating sebum production.
All skin conditions on the face, including acne, will benefit from daily SPF application. Look for a non-comedogenic formula that won’t aggravate acne further. Not skipping SPF will reduce the chances of post-acne scarring and hyperpigmentation.
Treating post-acne skin conditions: scars and marks
Treatments can range from skincare to prescribed medications and professional treatments, like laser and surgical treatments.
The best ingredients to brighten, increase collagen production, strengthen the skin barrier and reduce inflammation include:
- Vitamin C - Brightens skin and fades the appearance of hyperpigmentation
- Niacinamide - Strengthens the skin barrier and reduces inflammation
- Retinoids - Encourages cellular turnover
- Azelaic acid - encourages cell turnover
- Hemp seed oil - Reduces inflammation, promotes hydration and a stronger skin barrier
When it comes to common skin conditions; we’ve all dealt with this one at some stage: sunburn.
A visible sign of cellular damage, the redness from sunburn might fade fairly quickly but the effects can be long-lasting.
The dark side of the sun
Sun exposure is the #1 cause of signs of premature ageing; fine lines, wrinkles, sagging, and dark spots.
The sun emits UVA and UVB rays and both damage the skin but in different ways. UVB causes sunburn and increases the risk of skin cancer while UVA rays penetrate deep into the skin and destroy the elastin and collagen fibre that keeps skin firm and plump.
Sunburn exposes your skin to excessive trauma on the surface and the deeper layers.
After getting out of the sun, follow these tips in the hours and days immediately following the sunburn.
Take a cool bath or shower
Reduce the inflammation and heat in the skin as quickly as possible with a cool shower, bath or cold compress.
Keep skin moisturised
Sunburn causes the skin’s outer layer, the stratum corneum, to become dry, cracked, and flaky. Moisture will evaporate quickly from the skin so counteract dryness and dehydration with a nourishing facial oil or moisturiser.
Bursting with 14 of the most nutrient-rich botanical oils, including Hemp Seed Oil, our Moisturising Active Oil Serum will help repair damaged cells, keep skin hydrated and speed up the healing process.
Strengthen the barrier with ceramides
Ceramides work to counteract barrier damage by supplying the skin with the lipids it needs to seal moisture into the skin, keep external irritants out, and reduce inflammation.
Our Oil-to-Milk Face Cleanser is enriched with ceramides and is the ideal gentle cleanser to keep skin clear while promoting barrier repair.
Don’t pick blisters
It might be tempting but don’t pick at sunburn blisters. Doing so increases the chance of scarring and infection.
Wear SPF and cover up
Take extra care to protect your skin post-burn, covering up outdoors and applying broad-spectrum SPF.
Soothe itchy skin conditions
As it heals, severe sunburn can become one of the itchy skin conditions that is known as ‘devils itch’ or ‘hell's itch’. An extreme and painful condition, the itch is in response to the healing process and can last for days. Avoid scratching the skin, popping blisters or using greasy, heavy moisturisers that trap heat into the skin. Take a colloidal oatmeal bath to soothe itching naturally.
Get glowing, healthy skin with our Complete 3-Step Pack. Your full skincare routine made simple.