If you are suffering from a dry and dull complexion, you might need to exfoliate your skin. Failing to regularly exfoliate your skin can lead to you having a splotchy complexion, breakouts, back and shoulder acne, and irritation.
What is Exfoliation?
Exfoliation refers to the process of removing the dead skin cells that have accumulated on the topmost layer of your skin. Doing this process regularly will help your skin stay clean and smooth. Exfoliating your skin regularly will also allow you to enjoy the following benefits:
- Clear clogged pores
- Reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Brighten and even out your skin tone
- Allow your skin care products to penetrate deeper
Three Types of Exfoliation Methods
There are three main types of exfoliation methods. Each one uses a different method to help you slough off your dead skin cells and reveal a younger complexion.
This method involves the use of lightening body scrubs that include granules, such as salt, sugar, and beads. These components then buff or abrade the top layer of your skin, gently removing the accumulation of dead skin cells.
Chemical exfoliation uses enzymes and acid-based products to get rid of the dead cells on the surface of your skin. This type of exfoliation works by dissolving the proteins that bind your dead skin cells, allowing them to loosen and slough off your skin.
The last type of exfoliation method is mechanical exfoliation. This process involves the usage of a machine or device, which is designed to exfoliate your skin. The most common mechanical exfoliation methods you might have heard about or tried before are microdermabrasion and laser treatments.
Dos and Don’ts of Skin Exfoliation
Now that you’ve learned about the basics of exfoliation—including its benefits—you should make it a regular part of your skin care routine. Additionally, if you want to experience all the advantages it offers, make sure to follow these dos and don’ts:
Do Start Slowly
If you’re still new to the world of exfoliation and are still testing out products, make sure to exfoliate your skin at most two times per week. This is an important step to see if the new product you’re using is causing any irritation on your skin. Doing this will also help you see if the product is providing the effects that it promised. Once you notice any adverse reaction on your skin, stop using the product and address the issue immediately. If the symptoms don’t get better after a few days, seek help from a professional and follow their advice.
Do Exfoliate in the Evening
You might think that exfoliating your skin in the morning is better. After all, you would want to start your day feeling refreshed, right? However, you should know that experts advise against exfoliating your skin in the morning. This is because when you exfoliate your skin, you are removing the dull layers of your skin and exposing younger layers, which can be more sensitive.This means that your skin right after exfoliation is more vulnerable to the damage caused by the sun. It can also be easily affected by other environmental factors, such as pollution and impurities.
Instead, you should exfoliate your skin at night after a long day. Doing so provides you with a chance to remove accumulated dirt and toxins that are trapped on the surface of your skin. You can also treat your exfoliating session as a part of your evening pampering routine. Lastly, exfoliating at night gives your skin enough time to recover before being subjected to the sun’s UV rays and pollution again.
Do Apply Sunscreen
No matter the type of exfoliation you did to your skin, you should always protect it from the sun by using sunscreen. Since your skin will be extra sensitive after exfoliation, you need to apply sunscreen that offers enough protection for your skin, such as Gluta-C Body Lotion with Kojic Plus+ Whitening System.
This product contains SPF 30, which is enough to protect your sensitive skin from the harmful effects of UV rays. It is also effective in moisturizing your skin, something your newly exfoliated skin needs.
Do Exfoliate Your Whole Body
Most probably, you have a set routine for your face to keep its skin radiant and healthy, and exfoliation may be one of the steps in your regimen. But have you ever considered exfoliating the rest of your body?
You might think that only your face needs extra care since it has such sensitive skin. However, you should know that your body also needs exfoliation, especially your neck area, elbows, and hands.
These particular areas show signs of aging earlier and can even be more vulnerable to damage than your face. Giving these parts of your body the extra care they need will allow you to look young much longer.
Do Choose the Right Exfoliation Method for Your Skin Type
Choosing between the three types of exfoliation methods listed above is not purely based on your preferences. You also need to consider your skin type and its specific needs.
If you have oily skin, the method you should use for effective skin exfoliation is physical. This is more ideal for your skin type because its granules can easily break up the buildup of impurities and dead cells on your skin.
When shopping for body scrubs, look for a product that contains charcoal. This special ingredient can help absorb your skin’s excess oil.
People with dry skin should use a physical exfoliator with fine grains and a creamy texture. This type of exfoliator will be effective in removing the dead, dull layers of your skin and also provide it with extra hydration.
You should also try looking for an exfoliator that contains moisturizing oils, such as sunflower oil. Honey-based skin care products also provide enough moisturization that can help your dry skin.
Combination skin refers to a type of complexion that has oily and normal parts. If you have this skin type, you can choose between physical and chemical exfoliation. Both can address the primary needs of your complexion.
However, if you want to address the oiliness of some parts of your skin, you should try a light chemical exfoliator that contains alpha hydroxy acid (or AHA). Using a skin care product that has this component will allow you to gently exfoliate your skin and prevent your pores from getting clogged.
For people who often deal with breakouts, your priority is to minimize your skin’s further irritation. This means that you should avoid using physical exfoliators because their grains may be too damaging for your skin. Physical exfoliators may also be painful when used on areas with active acne lesions.
Instead, you should use a chemical exfoliator, which can penetrate your skin deeper. Because of this, it will be more effective in managing your skin’s oil production and getting rid of your clogged pores.
You can also visit a professional for mechanical exfoliation. A dermatologist can assess your skin and provide you with the right course of treatment to address your concerns.
Mature skin is often sensitive and dry, which is why it needs to be exfoliated regularly. Using the right exfoliation method on your aging skin will allow you to boost your skin cells’ regeneration and help your skin care products penetrate your skin better.
To enjoy these benefits, make sure to use a physical exfoliator that contains superfine grains. You can also combine this with a chemical exfoliator, which can reach the deeper layers of your skin and improve the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
If you have sensitive skin, you should be careful with carelessly buying exfoliating products. Since your skin is more prone to irritation, you might experience adverse effects with most physical exfoliators.
According to experts, you should also avoid using chemical exfoliators as they may be too harsh on your sensitive skin. Instead, you should seek advice from a professional who can help you find the right exfoliation method that works best for your skin type.
Do Replenish Your Skin After Exfoliation
After exfoliation, your skin might feel tight and parched. Although you might think that it is a sign that your exfoliation session was effective, you should not leave your skin like this. Keeping your skin dry will make it vulnerable to cracks, which can then serve as an opening for organisms and lead to infections.
Make sure to use moisturizing products on your skin after exfoliation. This type of nourishing item will keep your skin soft, smooth, and healthy even after exfoliation.
Don’t Rub Too Hard
You might think that rubbing your skin helps exfoliate it better. However, the opposite is true.
Exfoliating harshly will do more harm than good for your skin. This is true especially if you have easily irritated skin and you’re using a highly granular product or physical exfoliant.
Don’t Use an Exfoliant After Undergoing Skin Treatment
If you’ve recently paid a visit to your dermatologist and had a treatment done, you should stay away from exfoliating for a few days or weeks. If you got a chemical peel, skin bleaching, laser treatment, wax, and other procedures, your skin will be raw and sensitive. That is why you shouldn’t try exfoliating it right after.
Don’t Exfoliate When Your Skin is Irritated
Are you prone to experiencing psoriasis or eczema? Do you have skin allergies? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you should be careful when using exfoliators.
If the product you’re using triggers some kind of irritation—makes your skin look angry and feel warm to the touch—maybe it isn’t for you. When this happens, you should immediately stop using the item and reassess.
It’s tempting to exfoliate every day especially if you want to see the results of your efforts as soon as possible. However, doing this is not good for your skin.
Over-exfoliating can permanently damage your skin’s natural barrier, which protects it from impurities and locks in moisture. Without this protective layer, your skin will be easily dehydrated, and you might experience redness and irritation.
For an effective skin exfoliation regimen, make sure to exfoliate your skin only once or twice a week. This schedule will provide your skin barrier with enough time to regenerate between sessions.
Don’t Use Synthetic Exfoliants
Exfoliators that contain plastic microbeads will likely harm your skin. These particles can be too harsh on your skin and cause micro-abrasions.
Plastic microbeads are also harmful to the environment. Since they are made of plastic, they do not dissolve in water and can pollute oceans, seas, and even your water supply.
Don’t Forget the Other Steps in Your Routine
We’ve focused on exfoliation throughout this whole article, but don’t forget about the other steps on your skin care routine. These steps will boost the benefits that exfoliation provides for your skin and help keep it healthy and glowing.
Proper Exfoliation is Key to Your Dream Complexion
Follow these body exfoliation tips and witness your skin getting brighter, smoother, and healthier after every session! After some time, you can start flaunting your radiant complexion, thanks to the right exfoliation techniques.