Askanesthetician's Blog

An esthetician explores skincare issues and concerns

Treat Your Skin By Zones February 23, 2012

The idea I’m proposing in this post isn’t new at all, but hopefully it will help people who have wondered how to  treat multiple skin issues simultaneously.

So how do you take care of skin that has breakouts on the chin, sun damage on the cheeks, and dry patches by the nose?  It’s simple – divide your skin into zones and treat accordingly.  (Dermalogica has based their entire skin analysis process on this idea.)

Celebrity esthetician Kate Somerville explains the concept well in her book Complexion Perfection! (page 68):

I frequently tell my clients that our skin isn’t always one way, all the time; rather, it has different “ecosystems.”  To illustrate what I mean, think about Maui.  This small island has several distinct ecosystems all characterized by different weather patterns: it’s cool and dry in the upper elevations; there are warm to hot interior areas; the windward areas are wet; there are even wetter low areas below the mountains; and there’s the coastal, salt-spray zone.

Similarly, the face can be just as varied.  While a lucky few of us have very balanced and temperate “climate conditions” on our faces, most of us don’t.  It can be calm and clear on the forehead, dry and patchy on the cheeks, and broken out on the chin.

Here’s an example:

You have breakouts on your chin, sun damage on your cheeks, and fine lines around your eyes.

Here’s how to treat your skin by zones:

  • use an anti-acne lotion just on your chin
  • use a brightening serum just on your cheeks
  • use a treatment for fine lines and wrinkles just around your eye area

Another product that may be used only in some areas is  moisturizer since you might find that you don’t really need a moisturizer all over your face but just in some areas.  Apply your moisturizer where you feel that you need it most.

The one product you do need to use all over your face, every morning, is sunscreen.  (Anyone who is a regular reader of this blog knew that advice was bound to come at some point)

Image from


2 Responses to “Treat Your Skin By Zones”

  1. Rae Says:

    This is informative… What I’m doing makes sense after all. I assess the state my skin is currently in and I choose what to use from the products in my stash.

  2. […] adopted a new skin care practice since reading Ask an Esthetician’s article on treating the skin by zones.  At a given point in time, my skin condition can be any of: dry, combination, oily, very […]

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