The Skin Type Solution: Are You Certain Tthat You Are Using the Optimal Skin Care Products? Revised and Updated

The Skin Type Solution: Are You Certain Tthat You Are Using the Optimal Skin Care Products? Revised and Updated

by Leslie Baumann
The Skin Type Solution: Are You Certain Tthat You Are Using the Optimal Skin Care Products? Revised and Updated

The Skin Type Solution: Are You Certain Tthat You Are Using the Optimal Skin Care Products? Revised and Updated

by Leslie Baumann

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Take the simple questionnaire inside this book and within minutes discover which of the sixteen unique skin types describes your skin, which ingredients to avoid, the skin care brands that are right for you, and your new time- and money-saving regimen. In this revised edition of her classic bestseller, world-renowned Miami Beach dermatologist and researcher Dr. Leslie Baumann helps you shop for the optimal skin care products. She provides detailed lists of recommended products suited to every skin type and budget. Inside you’ll find
• your personal skin type profile detailing exactly what will work—and what won’t—for your unique complexion
• the newest products for healthy, radiant skin—cleansers, moisturizers, toners, sun blocks, foundations, and more
• tips on preventing skin aging and “problem” skin
• vital information on the new world of prescription products, facials, chemical peels, Retin-A, Botox, and Restylane injections

Now you can look like a million bucks without spending a fortune. This book is almost as good as having Dr. Baumann give you a personal consultation!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780553383300
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/26/2006
Edition description: Reprinted Edition
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 6.07(w) x 9.23(h) x 0.72(d)

About the Author

Leslie Baumann, M.D., founded the University of Miami Cosmetic Medicine and Research Institute in 1997, the first university-run research center dedicated to cosmetic dermatology and skin care. Her revolutionary skin typing system has been adopted worldwide. She is also the author of the bestselling textbook Cosmetic Dermatology and is a regular contributor to Yahoo! Health.

Read an Excerpt

The Skin Type Solution

By Leslie Baumann, M.D.

Random House

Leslie Baumann, M.D.
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0553804227

Chapter One

Why Skin Typing?


How many times have you gone to a cosmetic counter and spent $50 to $150 on products you never again use? Has a saleswoman or cosmetologist sold you a line that "did wonders for me," but does nothing for you? Have you developed an allergy or irritation to a product without knowing the cause? Why does your best friend swear by a facial care product that makes your skin look and feel terrible? Should you or shouldn't you use soap? Why do you hate the feel of sunscreen, though you know you should use it? Is a chemical face peel right for you? Should you consider using Retin-A?

If you owned a Subaru Forester, you wouldn't follow the maintenance procedures for a Volkswagen Golf. So if you happen to have dry, sensitive skin, why on earth would you use a moisturizer, cleanser, and cosmetic procedure more suited to someone with oily, resistant skin?

The reason? You don't know what type of skin you have; therefore, you don't know how to care for your skin. Until the publication of The Skin Type Solution, the Baumann Skin Typing System was not widely known or available. While many people have a general understanding of their skin, most have relied on commonly known but imprecise, unscientific definitions that fall short of providing a true and complete picture.

My many years as a dermatologist, researcher, and associate professor of dermatology have convinced me that no one ever needs to have a "bad skin day." Knowing your Skin Type is the missing, essential step to finding your way to beneficial products and treatments--and beautiful skin. But if you're like the typical first-time patient at my bustling University of Miami clinic, I'll bet you:

•Don't know your Skin Type

•Don't know that it's essential to base skin care decisions on your Skin Type

•Use the wrong products for your Skin Type

•Spend much more than you should on those products

•Use the wrong procedures for your Skin Type

•Fail to take advantage of procedures that would benefit your Skin Type

When it comes to using skin care products and services, most people have been in the Dark Ages, wandering through a maze of product misinformation and overzealous marketing, lucky to stumble on anything that works.

Jeannine's Story

Jeannine, a forty-eight-year-old Realtor with dry, sensitive, wrinkle-prone skin, was embarrassed by facial redness and flaking around her nose and eyebrows. Before she came to see me, she had been using an over-the-counter hydrocortisone ointment to relieve this condition. But when we discovered through my diagnostic questionnaire that Jeannine's skin was especially wrinkle prone, I warned her that long-term steroid use could worsen her Skin Type's natural tendency to thinness and wrinkles. Instead I switched her to the prescription product Elidel, which safely treated her redness and flaking without accelerating the skin thinning and wrinkling that bother people with Jeannine's Skin Type.

Like Jeannine, to properly care for your skin and prevent aging, you need a treatment model that describes and captures the very real and scientifically verifiable distinctions in skin physiology.

Skin Typing does just that.

Plus, you need a concrete program specifically and individually tailored to the unique attributes of your Skin Type. The Skin Type Solution provides all of that vital information and guidance.

Once you've discovered your Skin Type (through answering a questionnaire in Chapter Three), you can go straight to the chapter on your Skin Type and find everything you need right there. There is a science to skin care, and once you know your Skin Type, it all gets a lot easier.

I've spent the last eight years defining and clinically testing my Skin Type solutions on thousands of patients at my University of Miami clinic to assure that my scientific criteria will work for everyone, of every skin color, ethnicity, age, and sex. And it does.

Perhaps you've already benefited from understanding your psychological type, your learning style, or your Ayurvedic type. If so, you'll appreciate how critical it is to get a handle on your Skin Type. This understanding lets you take control of your skin.

My Special Expertise

The guidance and gems I'll give you won't appear anywhere else. I launched, and currently direct, the University of Miami Cosmetic Center, the first university-run cosmetic research center in the United States, where I treat thousands of patients every year. In addition to being an MD, I am an associate professor at the University of Miami and the chief of the Division of Cosmetic Dermatology, making me the first cosmetic dermatologist in the United States dedicated to the field of cosmetic dermatology who is also a full-time university faculty member, teaching and conducting research.

This unprecedented combination affords me a unique position. My academic responsibilities keep me right on the cutting edge of research, while my clinical work has been a proving ground for refining the recommendations that arise from my findings.

My clients--who range from gorgeous fashion models to topflight professionals, to fellow physicians, to all kinds of men and women concerned about aging--have reaped the benefits of my unique understanding of the role of Skin Type in skin care.

As a scientist who is also a woman who loves to experiment with beauty and skin care products and routines, I'm tireless in seeking out and researching all beauty options because I use them myself. What's more, as a person who wants to look my best all my life, I can put myself in your shoes and figure out how to best serve your skin care needs.

Defining a New Typology

Up until now, the field of dermatology lacked a rational model that people could learn to follow and apply for themselves. Prior to Skin Typing, the preexisting mode of analyzing skin differences dated back to the early 1900s, when cosmetic giant Helena Rubenstein first divided skin into four categories: normal, combination, dry, and sensitive. While that was revolutionary for its time, today we can apply more accurate scientific criteria to the range of skin differences.

Before Skin Typing, even dermatologists felt frustrated, since we all want to understand skin better and offer our patients tailor-made solutions. But until now, the revolutionary classification of the sixteen Skin Types was not there to help.

Here's just one example of the kind of confusion that runs rampant, even among professionals. I recently was on the advisory board of a major company with two prominent dermatologists. One was an "R" (someone with resistant, nonreactive skin) and the other one was an "S" (someone with sensitive skin). Right there in front of the company president, the two had a huge argument, with the "R" dermatologist claiming that there was no difference in skin care products and that it was all marketing hype. She could use anything on her facial skin, she told us, even Ivory soap, without a problem. The "S" skin dermatologist was shocked. Almost everything made her skin turn red and sting, she retorted. These two skin professionals did not understand that their opposing points of view stemmed from their opposite Skin Types. I saw very clearly that something was missing and wanted to simplify skin care, once and for all.

As a clinician, I'd seen the damage caused by following an inappropriate skin care routine. As a caring doctor, I'd heard the frustration and confusion of people trying to make good skin care choices while barraged by a plethora of products and overwhelmed by conflicting and often misleading marketing claims. Because each person had particular skin care needs, I noticed that the same products did not work for everyone, so I tailored individualized skin care regimens for my clients. Over time a clear, consistent, and replicable typology emerged. The sixteen Skin Types are the keys to a complete diagnostic and treatment program that covers every significant skin factor and that really works.

The Baumann Skin Typing System can help anyone determine their Skin Type and base their skincare decisions on what's best for their type. My system measures four factors in skin: oiliness vs. dryness, resistance vs. sensitivity, pigmentation vs. non-pigmentation, and tightness vs. wrinkling. Determining where you fall in each of the four categories serves as the foundation for typing your skin. Your Skin Type is more than the sum of the four different factors. Their interplay and expression is unique for each type. After seeing literally thousands of patients and refining the Baumann Skin Type Questionnaire over the last eight years, I can assure you that Skin Typing captures each Skin Type's unique qualities and shows you how to work with your type's strengths and weaknesses.

Once you understand your Skin Type, proper skin care isn't complicated or costly. You won't need to use a shelfful of products. Honing in on what your skin needs will actually simplify your beauty routine, making it easier to follow and more economical. Following the advice I'll extend in your Skin Type's chapter will end "bad skin days" because it will end bad skin care decisions.

How to Use This Book

In reading the opening chapter of this book, you'll familiarize yourself with the underlying principles of Skin Typing. In Chapter Two, you'll learn my innovative vocabulary to help you understand the different factors that I take into account when determining your Skin Type. In Chapter Three, you'll take the Baumann Skin Type Questionnaire. Once you tabulate your results, you will know exactly which one of the sixteen types describes your skin. You can then turn directly to that chapter for a complete profile that will provide you with everything you need to take charge of your skin and give it the best possible care. Your chapter will overview your type's main characteristics as well as share stories of patients who've experienced and treated skin problems similar to the ones that may have troubled you. The bottom line is that by reading your chapter, you will get to know your skin. This will provide the foundation for following my subsequent advice.

Each chapter contains Daily Skin Care Regimens specifically designed to address your Skin Type's problem areas. To follow your type's regimen, you will need to use the kinds of products I recommend. I'll provide a list of suggestions for each type of product, as well as extra suggestions to use when you have specific skin problems. In most product categories, I also provide a selection called Baumann's Choice, a good option to simplify your purchasing decision.

If you currently use products that you find effective, you can also continue to use them, if you wish. However, if you decide to do that, I advise you to consult the lists of ingredients that define which ones are favorable or counterproductive for your Skin Type. Some ingredients may be helpful for one of your skin concerns, but exacerbate another skin problem. For example, genistein, a component found in soy, helps wrinkles, but also increases pigmentation. A Non-Pigmented, Wrinkled Skin Type could safely use it, but a Pigmented, Wrinkled Type should only use products that contain soy that has had the genistein removed. That's one reason why I advise that you double-check your current products to ensure that they do not contain any no-no's. If they do, I recommend that you change products, as you could be unwittingly causing a problem. And you may also find that some of your favorite products do indeed contain helpful ingredients for your type. Still, I can best guarantee results with the products I know and recommend.

This book should be your companion when you shop for skin care products. As you put my recommendations in place, monitor how well they are working for you to assess whether or not consulting a dermatologist would be of benefit. For some Skin Types, I provide one or more additional Stage Two Daily Skin Care Regimens which address treating special skin problems via helpful prescription medications. Near the end of each chapter, I will point you toward your best options in cosmetic dermatology. A section of the book called "Further Help" will follow each of the four main Skin Type groups to offer more specific advice on certain prescriptions and procedures. It will also contain lifestyle, nutritional, and supplemental suggestions for your special needs.

In the chapter on your Skin Type, you will find:

1. Understanding of:

a. The basic qualities of your Skin Type

b. Your Skin Type's issues and challenges

c. Risk factors associated with your Skin Type

2. Guidelines for:

a. Your Skin Type's Daily Skin Care Regimen

b. Sun protection for your skin

c. Makeup that will help improve your skin condition

d. Types of prescription products helpful for your Skin Type

e. Cosmetic procedures that can help your skin (where applicable)

f. Cosmetic procedures that are not recommended for you (where applicable)

3. Specific Recommendations for:

a. Skin care products for your daily skin care routine

b. Skin care ingredients (to look for on product labels) that address your key skin issues

c. Skin care ingredients (to look for on product labels) that you should avoid because they can worsen your skin

Instead of letting you waste valuable time and money tracking down and purchasing products that wind up in the trash, I will direct you to ones that will really help. My role in research and industry development gives me an unparalleled across-the-board knowledge of skin care ingredients.

I'll indicate the best way to cleanse your skin, reveal whether you need to use a toner or a moisturizer, diagnose whether exfoliation is advisable for you, and show you when you'd benefit from prescription skin medications. All of my product recommendations will include options at low, medium, and high prices so that, whatever your budget, you can follow my recommendations to successful skin care. All selections are widely available, so you'll have no trouble obtaining them.


Excerpted from The Skin Type Solution by Leslie Baumann, M.D. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

Paula Begoun

Without question, The Skin Type Solution is the best book I've read on skin care. Every recommendation made by Dr. Leslie Baumann reflects current, state-of-the-art information and research. Baumann's skin typing profiles are so well organized with precise detail that virtually any reader will be able to identify her type of skin and then choose products that really work. Her recommendations are effective because they are based on science rather than hype and unsubstantiated information found in most books of this nature.
—(Paula Begoun, author of Don't Go to the Cosmetics Counter Without Me)


A Conversation with Dr. Leslie Baumann

Dr. Leslie Baumann answers some questions about The Skin Type Solution, her revolutionary new book.

Dr. Baumann, what's so different about Skin Typing? LB: Skin Typing takes into account all of the cosmetic skin problems or skin parameters that would drive any consumer to buy a skin care product. This allows me to make specific and customized product suggestions that are perfect for any one person's unique needs.

Skin Typing gives organization to the chaos of skin care. Take a look at the shelves of any retail outlet -- right now, there are thousands of products, and the options are too many; consumers are confused. Skin Typing, as revealed for the first time in The Skin Type Solution, clarifies the marketplace for any consumer, so he or she can take control of one's own skin care regimens and make educated choices.

According to the book, there are 16 types, which sounds complicated. Is it? How did you come to the conclusion that there are 16 types?

LB: It is actually quite simple. Think of your particular skin problems by asking yourself four key questions:

  • Is your skin oily or dry?
  • Is it sensitive or resistant?
  • Do you see dark patches on your face or uneven skin tone, or not?
  • Have you currently developed or will you develop wrinkles?

    The Baumann Skin Typing System is based on identifying these four parameters. Readers will take the Baumann Skin Type Questionnaire to discover their own unique type among the 16 possible combinations.

    As a doctor, I find that many of my patients aren't really sure about their skin; something simple like "are you oily or dry?" is actually a complicated question and some readers won't know the real answer (e.g. Studies show that when an average person is asked if one's skin is oily and then oil content is measured, the person was often wrong about whether his or her skin was oily or not). With the Questionnaire, it becomes easy, showing a reader where she is on the spectrum -- "are you very oily, slightly oily, slightly dry, or very dry?"

    I'll show readers with scientifically-validated questions that have been tested on more than 400 patients. As readers of The Skin Type Solution will learn, the 16 types have distinct needs and deserve individualized skin care.

    So this is more than just a new selling message to consumers, right?

    LB: Yes -- The Skin Type Solution is not meant to sell anything to consumers. It actually does the opposite: It teaches them what not to buy.

    Can your book help any person at any age?

    LB: Any person of any age can take the Questionnaire to find her/his skin type. Then, in Part III of the book, each chapter discusses that specific skin type throughout a person's lifespan -- what that skin type will face in its 20s, 30s, 40s and over age 50. And I give tips anticipating how skin will change with age and what anyone can do to take control of these changes and prevent the undesired ones.

    What are the advantages to understanding the Skin Typing system?

    LB: I feel confident that you will save money and time. You will ensure that you are doing everything you can to treat your skin and prevent its unique future problems. You will not fall prey to false marketing claims about products and procedures that are not right for you. You will know when it is time to see a dermatologist and when it is appropriate to self-treat.

    Can a person's type change over time and are ethnic differences taken into account?

    LB: Skin types stay basically the same life long but can change temporarily with pregnancy, diet changes, lifestyle changes such as a move to a dry climate from a humid climate, or with menopause. I recommend readers re-take the questionnaire after any of the "skin changing" events. For example, you can develop acne and skin oiliness in pregnancy that you did not have before and will not have after the pregnancy. However, you need to know what products t use during the pregnancy and The Skin Type Solution can help.

    Ethnic differences are already taken into account in the questionnaire and it has been proven to work on all ethnic groups. I care for a multi-ethnic population in my practice in Miami and have shown this typing system works.

    Are there tips in The Skin Type Solution that guys will appreciate?

    LB: Yes, absolutely. Men have many of the same skin issues as women: therefore, it is not the packaging or marketing of the products that are important but the ingredients in the products themselves. The Skin Type Solution is an ingredient-driven book; I tell you how to look for the right ingredients and the right products.

    Just because products say they are "For Men" does not mean they are right for all men. This book will help you determine your needs based on science, not marketing claims.

    You founded the University of Miami Cosmetic Center, the first of its kind in the country. What is it? How has being at a university increased your knowledge base? Your access?

    LB: It is a University-run practice that is devoted to performing, researching, and teaching cosmetic procedures. I started it in 1997 and I now have 6 dermatologists who work there under my direction. I spend one third of my time seeing patients, one third researching the new products (usually as part of the FDA approval process) and one third of my time teaching dermatology residents and dermatologists from around the world about the science of these techniques and how to properly perform them. We teach the world the science and art of cosmetic dermatology!

    How do we do this teaching? We use the textbook I authored (Cosmetic Dermatology: Principles and Practice, by Leslie S. Baumann, M.D., ISBN 0071362819, published in the US by McGraw-Hill Professional) that is now in four languages, with training seminars, with lectures given worldwide, and through a monthly column that I write for a leading dermatology newspaper. We also have dermatologists observe as we treat patients. I am never alone! My current entourage of observers is five people -- including a visitor from Brazil, one from Mexico, one from Thailand, a dermatology resident dermatologist in training), and a new dermatologist that I am training to join the practice.

    By "University run" I mean that I am also an Associate Professor in addition to being an M.D. That means I also publish frequently. I have weekly access to the brilliant minds of other university professors with whom I frequently collaborate. Also, any income made in the practice whether from research or patient care, stays at the University of Miami. I am a salaried associate professor and my income does not depend on that generated from a cosmetic company or a patient. This allows me to be unbiased about product and procedures preferences and I do not feel the need to sell to my patients to make money. In fact, patients have jokingly referred to me as Dr. No because I often talk them out of unnecessary procedures and end up saving them money.

    When we first founded the UMCC, there was a need to have a research-based cosmetic dermatology center. Many doctors were getting into the cosmetic dermatology business but no one was researching the products and techniques to see if they were any good and no one was training others how to do them properly. I've always loved to teach and loved science. I have had a passion for collecting vintage cosmetic products for years so it all came together.

    It was my Chairman, Dr. Bill Eaglstein who connected all of the dots and told me that I should do this. Within a few years we were doing the FDA research trials that led to the approval of Botox and many other cosmetic products and procedures (such as Hylaform and Tri-Luma).

    The University of Miami is one of the most famous dermatology programs because of its founder Dr. Harvey Blank. He was the first to bring well designed clinical trials to the field of dermatology. He discovered the first antifungal drug and was the first to see the herpes virus under an electron microscope. Because of this, UM attracts the leading dermatologists in the world. We are very research-oriented and are the only training program that requires our residents to complete a research project in order to graduate. I work with the dermatologist Dr, Schachner, who wrote the leading textbook on Pediatric Dermatology, Dr. Nouri, who wrote the textbook on dermatologic surgery (skin cancer surgery) and many others. Skin care has long been an interest at University of Miami because the wound healing research division is strong there. I interact with these brilliant people several times a week; we are always discussing ideas, latest research, etc.

    In addition, I am surrounded by inquisitive dermatology residents and dermatologists from around the world that teach me as much as I teach them. Their constant questions of "why this or why that" keep me on my toes and encourage me to increase my knowledge base.

    The access comes in handy a lot. For example, as I developed the Baumann Skin Type Questionnaire, I met with experts at the University of Miami who helped me understand about questionnaire development and what steps to take to make sure the questions measured what they were supposed to measure. It would have taken me much longer to develop the questionnaire and therefore the Skin Typing Solution, without the help of experts. The academic environment provides a world rich with intellect, with insight, and inspires my passion for teaching and sharing with others.

    Dr. Baumann, how have you been able to maintain good relations with over three dozen competing cosmetic product companies?

    LB: They need me as much as I need them. I need them to educate me about the latest discoveries and they need someone who can understand the research and who can differentiate between well-designed research trials and poorly designed ones that render meaningless results. When I like their research I help explain it in simpler terms to dermatologists and other physicians through my columns and lectures. These doctors trust me to remain unbiased. I am of more value to the companies when I am unbiased because then I will be believed by doctors and consumers when I talk.

    Can it be confusing for you to be reviewing similar products for different manufacturers or lines?

    LB: No. The more I know about the science of the skin the easier it is for me to evaluate products. Each piece of information that I learn builds on the last piece. Companies often discuss new product ideas with me because I know what has and has not worked in the past and I may be able to save them a lot of time and money by keeping them from going down the wrong path.

    Are you in favor of some of the popularly-discussed treatments, like Botox injections, and other procedures? Are these always effective, and how does a person with a particular Skin Type know?

    LB: Yes, I am in favor of many of these treatments, at least most of them. But as The Skin Type Solution shows, they are not right for everyone -- and that's important to understand! I discuss if procedures are right for a particular skin type in the "Further Info" sections of each skin type chapter.

    I'm proud of the research trials in which I have been and UMCC has been involved; because of our expertise in clinical research, I get to use these products before they are available on the market in the U.S. I have attended the FDA panel meetings that discuss whether or not these procedures should be approved and I an intimately familiar with the risks and benefits of these procedures. Many patients do some preliminary fact-finding at our site at This site was created in conjunction with the UMCC.

    We live in a youth-obsessed culture. Is all this focus on looking younger a concern?

    LB: The focus should be on looking better, not younger. Many studies show this is important. For example, those with oily skin or acne can be perceived as unkempt which can hurt their chances getting that new job or meeting the partner of their dreams. Those with facial flushing and redness may be perceived as naive and immature. Those with dry skin may itch which distracts them, makes them sleep poorly and be less able to function well. You don't have to believe me: believe the multiple studies on the subject. There is a great book entitled Survival of the Prettiest that offers a terrific look at the research around beauty.

    And what do you say to the old adage that "one gets the face one earns?"

    LB: I agree with it! If you smoke, sunbathe frequently, do not wear sunscreen and have a poor skin care regimen, your skin will suffer -- that I can promise you.

    Copyright ©2005 The Bantam Dell Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc.

    All Rights Reserved. Questions and Answers may be used in the promotion of The Skin Type Solution by Leslie S. Baumann with permission from the Bantam Dell Marketing Department. Call 212-782-9500 for details.

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