Posted on February 03 2018
WHAT IS EXFOLIATION?
Exfoliation is the process of removing dead skin cells from the surface of your skin. This can de done both manually as well as chemically.
WHY IS EXFOLIATION NEEDED?
Our skin is in continuous renewal mode. Younger skin cells turn over in 4-6 weeks while more mature skin takes 6-8 weeks to regenerate. The result is a buildup of dead skin cells. These not only cause your skin to look dull and lifeless, but also hamper the ability of your skin to fully absorb any of the serums, moisturisers or any other skin care product that you apply to it. Exfoliation helps in removing these cells and in refreshing your skins surface
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I EXFOLIATE?
That depends on your skin type. Oily skin or skin with a tendency to get blocked pores should exfoliate 2-3 times a week. If you have normal to dry skin once a week is plenty.
WHAT SHOULD I USE TO EXFOLIATE?
Let's start with understanding what the different types of exfoliators are.
PHYSICAL exfoliators are the most popular ones out there and the best known as well. These are typically scrubs of some sort or the other and contain an abrasive material that helps in the removal of dead skin cells from the surface. These materials can vary from micro beads to crushed nut shells to sugars to coffee grounds to oatmeal. Other physical exfoliators are loofahs (best used on the body and not on the face!) as well as sponges such as the Konjac sponge.
Physical exfoliators can cause micro tears in the skin, especially those with nut shells or grounds in them. For use on the face, we recommend a gentle scrub such as these which provide gentle yet effective exfoliation.
CHEMICAL exfoliators are liquids that contain enzymes or alpha hydrozy acids (AHA's) or beta hydroxy acids (BHA's) that gently slough away surface cells leaving your skin feeling smooth and replenished. Chemical exfoliation works by breaking down the substance that keeps the dead cells stuck to your skin and requires zero scrubbing.
Alpha Hydroxy Acids are great for exfoliating the outermost layer of the skin. They are therefore surface exfoliators and are good for mature or weather damaged skin. Beta Hydroxy Acids work on the surface as well as reaching down for a deeper exfoliation that cleans your pores while preventing the formation of bacteria.
THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND WHILE EXFOLIATING
- Start slow. If you are new to exfoliating begin with manual exfoliation and then progress to chemical exfoliation.
- Be gentle. No matter what type of exfoliation you go with be gentle on your skin. Never scrub too hard or too often.
- Consult your dermatologist before starting a chemical exfoliation regime.
- It's best to keep exfoliation for your night time routine. This way your skin has time to recover from the scrubbing/ sloughing before you subject it to sunlight and the pollutants outdoors. Needless to say, ALWAYS wear sunscreen, especially after exfoliating.