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Do This Fun Skin Test With A Sheet Mask Tonight

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Turns out I have some knowledge you might find interesting. A quick tip, particularly for those with combination skin. It's something you could have definitely thought of by yourself, but maybe you didn't. It doesn't make me quite Picasso-level in terms of ingenuity, but if you want to go ahead and make the comparison, I won't stop you. Shall I get on with it? OK, I'll get on with it.

In between any season—meteorological or otherwise—skin tends to change. What once seemed dry now seems oily. What previously peeled may no longer peel. But because skin can be confusing (that whole "it's oily because it's dry" thing always throws me for a loop), before you reset your products, you should first take stock of what your skin actually needs. More simply: Where are you dry? Where are you less dry? Finding this information (if you don't know it intuitively—and if you don't, that's perfectly OK to admit) can be done efficiently and affordably with any old sheet mask you have lying around. If you don't have one, might I suggest my favorite?

Take the sheet mask and put it on your face. Now tune into your favorite type of entertainment—I recently tore through Netflix's Big Mouth and recommend it. Watch/listen/read that for a while, keeping the face mask on for the duration. Like, longer than you want to. Aim for 40 minutes, give or take. This should be long enough for the serum to really soak in—and that's the point. When you're ready to remove, feel around the mask. Where did it dry out first? What's still soaked? Use this as a barometer for where you need to be adding more moisture to your face.

It's simple—too simple—on its surface, but here's the thing: The results can be surprising. Every time I do this, the forehead section ends up bone dry, while the rest retains serum. But my forehead is where I tend to break out the most. There's that dry skin/acne paradox rearing its ugly head again! See what I mean? Skin. Can't live with it; can't live without it. So may as well slap another serum on there and call it a night.

—Emily Ferber

Maybe your skin isn't combination after all? Read here for the best face masks for oily skin instead.