Dry Skin Vs Oily Skin

Just like the uniqueness of everything else about you, your skin-type will be specific. Some have dry skin, some have oily, and further to that, some have a combination of both, or a combination that’s slightly oilier, or slightly drier. The spectrum from very dry to very oily is quite a large one, and dependent on your skin behaviour and the delicate make-up of its cells and glands.

At Vaseline we can help you with a top-level comparison that you can use to answer the question, ‘what is the difference between dry skin and oily skin, and which one do I have?’ Here’s a quick guide:

Difference Between Dry Skin and Oily Skin?

Dry Skin

Dry skin is skin that has less moisture than skin would usually require. If we take a look into the microscopic build of your skin, you’ll see a combination of proteins and lipids that form a moisture-retaining latticework – if that structure is damaged, the skin struggles to retain water and becomes dehydrated. Drier skin can then crack and flake and may need a little more care than other skin types.

Oily Skin

The oil glands – the skin’s oil producing workshops – are in place to lend the skin much needed moisture for elasticity and plumpness. However, sometimes these glands can overproduce, resulting in an oily sheen about the skin. There are a few reasons for this, genetics is one, but more commonly, oily skin occurs when the body undergoes a massive hormonal event, such as puberty, pregnancy, menstruation, or menopause.

How Do I Know if I Have Dry Skin or Oily Skin?

So, dry and oily skin types each have their own telling characteristics – let’s run through what you should look out for when endeavouring to figure out your type:

Dry Skin vs Oily Skin Difference: Skin Feel


Look out for a feel that’s tight, and for cracks or flakes when humidity is low – in winter, specifically.


Look for a greasy or shiny look, that’s a big indicator of oily skin.

Dry Skin vs Oily Skin Difference: Your Pores


If you have dry skin, your pores may appear small and tight.


If you have oily skin, your pores may be easily visible and often clogged by the oil and sweat that the body exudes.

Dry Skin vs Oily Skin Difference: After the Shower


After a cleansing, dry skin may feel even tighter and dehydrated.


After cleansing, oily skin will feel refreshed and clean because the build up of surface secretions have been washed away. That greasy look and shine will reappear though.

The Vaseline Solution


If you've identified your skin as more dry, you'll need to moisturise often.

Vaseline has a range of moisture restoring products that will do the trick in getting your skin back to healthy looking – and what’s more, each is dermatologically approved.

Try Vaseline Clinical Care Extremely Dry Skin Rescue Moisturising Body Cream.


If you have oilier skin, you'll most likely find yourself not needing to moisturise as much. However, because of the overproduction of sebum oil, you may experience breakouts. Use a gentle soap (you don't want to wash all the oil away, as it is still beneficial to the skin in moderation), and then moisturise your skin. Whatever your skin-type, though, Vaseline has the solution for you, to bring it back to harmony and comfort. We have the product for every skin need, so click to see our full range of pioneering skin technologies, and reach for amazing every day.

Expert Advice
The advice in this article does not constitute medical advice, it is solely available for information purposes. Learn more about skin type issues and dry skin tips to help treat any causes you may have.


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