To be clear, when we talk about exfoliation it’s the practice of removing dead skin cells through granular, enzymatic, mechanical or chemical exfoliation. But before we go into all the ways to exfoliate it’s important to understand why you should exfoliate, at home, 2-3 times a week.
Sluffing off all the dead skin helps you look more radiant and it allows the sunlight to reflect off your new, fresh beautiful skin cells. Your skin makes new skin cells every 27 days; they begin deep under the skin and slowly move their way up to the surface. As the skin cells move to the upward they start to die. Those dead, dry, lifeless skin cells are what you see when you look in the mirror. Exfoliating a couple times a week removes the dullness and replaces it with beautiful, fresh, hydrated skin that not only looks more radiant – but actually reflect sunlight giving your face a truly luminous glow.
Exfoliating reduces blackheads because the oils on our skin get removed before they have an opportunity to become oxidized and turn black. When oil gets trapped in your pores it starts to oxidize making your pores black! When you have a regular exfoliation regime you sluff off the oil so it has little time to oxidize, minimizing the appearance of blackheads.
Taking off the dead skin allows your moisturizers & skincare products to penetrate deep into the skin instead of just sitting on the surface – Making your skincare more effective. Have you ever used your moisturizer, serum or night cream and wondered why it just sits on the surface, feeling like it never penetrates to the way it should? Well it’s likely that it can’t get past those dead skin cells. Do you really want all of your product’s effort to go towards moisturizing dead, lifeless skin? Of course not, so get to scrubbing! When you remove the obstacles in the way you will be BLOWN AWAY with how much more effective your skincare products are.
CONFUSED ABOUT WHAT KIND OF EXFOLIATION IS BEST FOR YOU?
Here’s a quick little run down of the different ways you can exfoliate. From daily exfoliation to deep, resurfacing treatments – there’s an exfoliator for every skin type and every occasion!
Granular Exfoliation. Exfoliating scrubs that contain rice powder or colloidal oat flour are a great example of granular exfoliators. If you have Normal, Oily, Combination or Dry Skin – you can use an exfoliator that is finely ground to remove dead skin 2-3 times a week. If you have Rosecea, Broken Capillaries, General Redness or Active Acne you may want to avoid granular exfoliators because they might irritate your skin and cause more harm than good. Using exfoliators that are too rough cause abrasive injuries on a micro level so make sure the consistency is fine, like the grain of sand. Your skin will thank you for it.
Enzyme Exfoliation. Enzyme peels like a lovely papaya mask are great options for everyone, but in particular, people with Redness, Rocesea, Broken Capillaries and Active Acne. In contrast to granular exfoliators, enzyme peels gently dissolve the dead skin cells and are then removed when you take the product off of your face. Nature knows best and fruits like papaya, pineapples and lemons are superb natural exfoliators because there enzymatic properties not only dissolve the dead skin, and they’re also incredibly gentle on your complexion.
Mechanical Exfoliation. There are so many amazing tools to exfoliate the skin, particularly if you go to your neighborhood spa. When you start going down the road of Mechanical Exfoliation, you’re going for a deeper resurfacing, usually to permanently improve the texture of your skin. Microdermabrasion is a great example of mechanical exfoliation. It’s similar to a MICRO-BLASTER using granules and wind to the penetrating deeper levels of the epidermis. When the exfoliation occurs on a deeper level, it resurfaces fine lines, scars and pigmentation. Microdermabrasion is great for aging skin & dry skin but I wouldn’t recommend it for Redness, Rocesea or Active Acne because of the potential irritation factor.
Chemical Exfoliation. Finally, my favorite exfoliation for deep, long lasting resurfacing is a Chemical Fruit Acid Peel. Fruit Acids are amazing because they dissolve your skin cells on a super deep level, the way microdermabrasion does, but by disintegration vs. sandblasting. Of course this is being dramatic but deeply dissolving the skin cells is much gentler and less aggressive. And if you’re going in every 7-10 days for an acid peel your skin is slowly getting more and more refined on a deep level. This leaves you with a smooth texture – almost entirely free of fine lines, acne scars and pigmentation problems.