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Your individual complexion reflects your ethnicity, genetics, race and exposure to environmental damage such as the sun and pollution. Traditional labels like “black” and “white” do not accurately capture the variance in skin tone among individuals. For instance, there are black people with lighter colored skin, and white people with dark complexions. This is why, when describing complexion types, cosmetic surgeons rely on a more objective set of descriptive terms: The Fitzpatrick Scale for Skin Type. The Fitzpatrick Scale has been broadly generalized to reflect how quickly and easily your skin burns or tans.


The Fitzpatrick Scale can range from Type 1 (very pale like Nicole Kidman pictured above, top left) to Type 6 (very dark black like Nupita Nyong’o above, bottom right). You can use the charts above to identify your Fitzpatrick Skin Type. In Dr. Morrissette’s practice, we rely on the Fitzpatrick Scale to determine individual skin types and thus, determine appropriate treatments and peels that are safe. We also encourage all of our patients, regardless of skin type, to wear SPF daily to prevent UVA and UVB damage.

Type I

Light, pale white Always burns, never tans

Type II

White, fair Usually burns, tans with difficulty

Type III

Medium, white to olive Sometimes mild burn, gradually tans to olive

Type IV

Olive, moderate brown Rarely burns, tans with ease to a moderate brown

Type V

Brown, dark brown Very rarely burns, tans very easily

Type VI

Black, very dark brown to black Never burns, tans very easily, deeply pigmented

Your first step...

Your first step is to come to our office and meet with us about what you hope to achieve. Dr. Morrissette is involved in creating a natural looking result, and never recommends surgery when it isn't warranted, or won't benefit the patient. We proudly serve all of Ventura County, including Oxnard, Camarillo, Ojai and Santa Barbara. Call today to schedule a free consultation with us.

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Dr. Morrissette is a facial cosmetic surgeon specializing in facelift, BOTOX, lip injections & eyelid surgery in Ventura & Santa Barbara.

the content/images on this website are not a guarantee of individual results. Individual results may vary. the information provided on this site is for general informational purposes only, and does not replace the need for a formal consultation with a plastic and reconstructive surgeon before undergoing a surgical procedure or skin care treatment.

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