Exfoliating 101

By Cheyenne Brown

I recently had the conversation about exfoliating with my writing team. From this conversation, I learned that not everyone knows what exfoliating is or how to properly exfoliate. Many argue that exfoliating is too harsh on their skin or they do not see the point of it. But I personally believe exfoliating is a crucial part of skin care routines.

Why should you exfoliate?

Believe it or not, your skin goes through a lot. It comes in contact with a lot of germs on a day to day basis. Dead skin cells build up on your skin’s surface and trap impurities (oil, makeup, dirt) underneath the skin.

Main benefits:

1. It preps our skin for the products we will be using for our skincare routine.

2. It removes dead skin buildup. Dead skin can gunk up your pores causing them to appear larger.

3. Promotes smooth & hydrated skin

4. It helps surface ingrown hairs

5. It helps lighten up dark marks

How to properly exfoliate:

Always follow the instructions!! Also, make sure you start off gentle. Scrubbing too hard can cause redness and irritation. Do not over exfoliate. This can strip the layer of the skin of “environmental protection” which makes skin weak.

When to exfoliate:

For oily skin, I would recommend exfoliating 3-4x a week using harder pressure (brushes/scrubbers).

For dry skin, I would recommend exfoliating 1-3x a week using a lighter pressure (fingertips).

Over-exfoliating can dry out and irritate your skin.

Chemical vs Physical exfoliation?

If exfoliating does not do anything else, it at least removes the topical layers of dead skin.

There are two types of exfoliators: physical and chemical. Physical exfoliators are most typically known as scrubs. You manually massage the product into your skin using circular motions. Chemical exfoliators contain specific acids that remove the dead sill cells without any scrubbing.

Good products:

For your body:

  1. The Body Shop Mango Exfoliating Sugar Body Scrub

  2. Tree Hut Body Shea Sugar Scrub, Moroccan Rose

  3. Clinique Sparkle Skin Body Exfoliating Cream

For your face:

  1. Clean & Clear Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub

  2. Green Facial Tea Scrub

  3. Origins GinZing Refreshing Scrub Cleanser

  4. Almond Honey Facial Scrub (106) For All Skin Types

No matter what kind of skin you have, exfoliating is important! The most important aspect of this is to make sure you are being cautious!

Remember these steps:

1. Before you begin exfoliating, take a look at your skin and its current state in order to ensure you exfoliate accordingly.

2. Apply a small amount to your face and gently massage product into your dampened skin in a circular motion. Do not try to exfoliate on dry skin!

3. Rinse with warm water and pat dry with a towel. Please make sure the towel is clean, dirty towels can put all that bacteria you just washed off your face, back.

4. Lastly, remember this order. Exfoliate, Tone(optional, not everyone uses a toner), &Moisturize.

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