Skin Exfoliation

Skin exfoliation is an important part of your skin care regimen. As we age, the cell turnover slows down, leading to a buildup of dead skin cells. Exfoliating the skin helps remove the dead skin cells and allow moisturizers to better penetrate into the skin. Exfoliation gives you glowing skin and reveals younger and fresher looking skin. People who suffer from oily skin, blackheads, whiteheads, and acne can get benefits from exfoliation as it helps unclog pores and get rid of excessive oils that cause these skin problems.

Skin exfoliationTo exfoliate your skin, you need to choose an exfoliant that is appropriate for your skin type. There are two types of exfoliations:

Mechanical / Physical Exfoliation

Mechanical exfoliants include granular scrubs, loofahs, brushes, and washcloths. You can rub the skin with these abrasive products to get rid of dead skin cells and other impurities.  This type of exfoliation is not only removing dead skin cells but also increasing circulation as you scrub the skin in circular motions. However, this exfoliation deals with the very top layer of skin. It may also irritate the skin if you do it improperly so people with dry skin or acne-prone skin should avoid mechanical exfoliation.

Chemical Exfoliation

This type of exfoliation dissolves the bonds that hold dead cells on the skin’s surface. Chemical exfoliants can be found over-the-counter or prescribed by a dermatologist, depending on types of exfoliants and the strength of them.

– AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) are water soluble and do not penetrate the skin’s surface barrier. These acids can be found in forms of glycolic, malic, citric, lactic, and tartaric acids. AHAs exfoliate on the surface of the skin so they are preferred for dry skin because they do not worsen the dryness. Sun-damaged skin, age spots, uneven skin tone, and freckles which occurs on the outer layer of the skin can also be treated by using AHAs.

– BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acids) is known as salicylic acid. BHA is oil soluble and can penetrate much deeper into the skin so it can dissolve the buildup of oil that clogs your pores. BHA is suitable for oily, acne-prone skin and for treating blackheads and white bumps. This type of chemical exfoliant is less likely to irritate the skin than AHAs because it does not work on the skin surface. Thus, if you cannot tolerate AHAs, the BHA may be a better choice for you.

– Retinoids have exfoliation properties that can penetrate deeper into the skin than AHAs and BHA. They not only remove the top layer of dead skin cells but also stimulate the collagen production and cell turnover. Retinoids are excellent treatments for age spots, uneven skin tone, wrinkles, and acne.

– Natural enzymes are derived from fruits such as papaya (papain) and pineapple (bromelain). Enzyme exfoliators gently exfoliate the skin so they are recommended for all skin types.

Exfoliation Tips

– If you have sensitive skin, you should use a gentle exfoliant designed for your skin type and should not exfoliate the skin more often than once a week.

– If you have dry skin, you should also limit the exfoliation to once a week.

– If you have oily and acne-prone skin, you can exfoliate the skin every other day.

– After exfoliating your skin no matter what type of the skin you have, you need to apply a moisturizer because exfoliating the skin usually causes the skin to dry out.

– Avoid skin around eyes while you are exfoliating as this area is very sensitive.

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3 Responses

  1. April 11, 2011

    […] become glowing. As honey also has the ability to moisturize the skin, it helps sooth the skin after exfoliation. This makes honey an excellent exfoliator for sensitive […]

  2. November 13, 2014

    […] you can start applying an exfoliant that contains alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) once a week. A skin exfoliation stimulates cell renewal in different ways from retinoids so you can get more benefits from […]

  3. May 28, 2017

    […] Exfoliate your neck skin regularly. Gentle exfoliation can gradually remove dirt and dead skin cells. In addition, pay special attention to the neck […]

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