What’s my skin type & tone?

Written by Jennifer Choi, M.D.

Dermatologists think of skin types as a description of how likely a person is to get a sunburn. Here is an example ranging from 1-5:

Skin type 1 people burn very easily in the sun.
Skin type 5 people tan extremely easily and burn very rarely.

**Lower number skin types have an increased risk of skin cancer and need to be extra cautious with sun protection.

You may also be curious about your skin tone. Skin tone is the color on the surface of your skin and is determined by the amount of melanin (skin pigment) present. Within all of the skin types, people may have cooler or warmer skin tones. Skin color can range from the darkest brown to a light/pale shade.

  • Cool skin tones:  If you can see lots of pink flushing in your skin or your veins appear blue under the surface of your skin, your skin tone is likely cooler.
  • Warmer skin tones:  If your skin has more yellow undertones, with less pink flushing and greenish veins, then you have a warmer skin tone.
  • Neutral skin tone: You can also have a neutral skin tone, which lies somewhere in the middle.