What is your facial fingerprint?

Businesswoman Touchning Digital Screen
Businesswoman Touching Digital Screen
ŠiStockphoto.com/ulent Ince

The term "facial fingerprint" might sound a little strange, but it's a simple concept. Your fingerprint is made up of the lines and other markings on the surface of the tips of your fingers. Your facial fingerprint, in a similar fashion, is made up of the lines and other markings on the surface of your face. This includes the lines, wrinkles and dry skin that produce the signs of aging.

In the same way that a police detective takes fingerprints from the scene of a crime to help solve a case, you can take your face's fingerprint to collect information about your skin's condition. First, wash your face of all the dirt, oil, makeup and moisturizer that may be on it. Any extraneous debris will make it harder to get good results. Let your face dry completely. Then, take a piece of transparent tape about three inches (7.6 centimeters) long and press it vertically onto your face by stretching it from your scalp to the point directly in between your eyebrows. Gently remove the tape, and inspect it for lines and dry skin cells. Do the same for other locations on your face, such as the cheekbones, upper lip and temples [source: Oz].


Take note of what your facial fingerprint reveals about the condition of your skin. Does your skin produce the smooth, line-free tape typical of a thirty-year-old? Or does it show the fine lines and dry skin of increasing age? If so, you can still spend a little energy on reversing the process. For a start, you should moisturize often and apply sunscreen before stepping outside. Then, after a few weeks of adjusting your skincare regimen, take your facial fingerprint again.

Your facial fingerprint is an easy way to find out what condition your skin is in, and a good reminder that healthy skin takes a little work. For lots more information on skin age and skin care, visit the links on the following page.


Lots More Information

Related HowStuffworks Articles


  • Aging Skin Net. "Causes of Aging Skin." (Sept. 21, 2009) http://www.skincarephysicians.com/agingskinnet/basicfacts.html
  • Oz, Mehmet. "Is Your Skin Aging Faster Than It Should?" Aug. 28, 2009. (Sept. 21, 2009)