Our skin sheds dead skin naturally, but sometimes, the dead cells fail to shed completely, resulting in dull, dry and patchy skin. This is where exfoliation comes in. By removing this layer of debris off of your skin, exfoliation helps brighten your complexion, and lets your skin-care products penetrate deeper into your skin.
There are two catogories of exfoliants: Physical, and Chemical.
- Physical exfoliation, is basically scrubbing the skin with an abrasive. It could be a washcloth, a clarisonic brush, grains, apricot kernel meal etc.
- Chemical exfoliation uses AHA (Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Malic Acid), BHA (Salicyclic Acid) and fruit enzymes that aids the cell turnover. These compounds are extracted from plants.
What works for your skin type:
- Sensitive: BHAs, generally least irritating of all exfoliants.
- Normal: You chosen one! Use anything you like.
- Dry: AHAs like glycolic acid dissolves the flaky part of skin, allowing your moisturizer to go deeper to combat dryness.
- Oily: All physical exfoliants. This skin type can also tolerate stronger exfoliants like motorized facial brushes.
- Combination: Use a combination of exfoliants specific to different target areas.
- Acne-Prone: Look for products with salicylic acid, or glycolic acid.
General Rules of exfoliation:
- Any exfoliation should be limited to 1-2 times a week.
- Body specific scrubs shouldnt be used on face. These have bigger particle size and can cause micro-tear in delicate facial skin. Unless the label specifies the facial use, please refrain from using.
- Do NOT scrub over active acne, open cuts and sores.
- Professional exfoliation like Dermaplaning, Microdermabrasion and Chemical peels can be opted for based on what you are looking to achieve from exfoliation.