Right now, thousands of dead skin cells are getting in the way of your glow. So while we still have an official month of winter left, why not get a head start on that summer radiance now? There are so many misconceptions when it comes to exfoliation, and it’s a little overwhelming to know what to go for, and what’s right for your skin. The reality is though, it’s a simple addition to your skin care regime, can be either a cleanser or a scrub, and exfoliating will help maximize what you’re already using topically (serums, moisturizers) to achieve radiant, glowing clear skin.
My Skin’s Too Sensitive for a Scrub.
Is it though? There is a big difference between ‘sensitive’ skin, and ‘desensitized’ skin, and it’s important to understanding which category your skin actually fits in to. Sensitive skin is actually a well-used marketing term without actually getting to the cause of the problem. Generally, sensitive skins are diagnosed as the condition of skins that easily break out in rashes, have rosacea, eczema and psoriasis. Whereas Desensitized skins have experienced trauma through in-proper diagnosed treatments (peels, microdermabrasion, lasers, oral medication to suggest a few), as well as home-care (too much of an ingredient such a Vit. A/Retinol, and poorly formulated products), in which case you need to slowly rebuild the skins ability to function optimally. Gritty, coarse scrubs are definitely out, but most sensitive skins can benefit from a mild and short contact exfoliating product. To gently resurface and remove dead skin cells, try a cleanser with Lactic Acid which will assist in retaining the lipid water content required for hydrated, radiant skin. Orange Oil and Teprenone are also beneficial to help with the red flushed skin reaction that is linked to sensitive skins as these ingredients will help reprogram the response your skin naturally generates when it perceives itself to be in ‘trauma’.
My Skin’s Dry. Won’t Exfoliating Make It Even More So?
Not at all, if you’re using the right type of scrub or exfoliating agent. Actually, dry skin usually presents flaking, which can inhibit the full penetration of serums and moisturizers – essentially blocking the moisture that your skin so desperately seeks. You may also find that your skin appears to have pimple-like bumps which is oil build up from being trapped under the dead skin sitting on the surface; your skin found whatever it naturally can produce to form some kind of hydration-like comfort. Try using an AHA (Alphahydroxy Acid) based cleanser to slowly disband the bonds between dead cells, plus Lactic/Mandelic acid to gently resurface and remove dead skin cells, while retaining the lipid water content required for hydrated, radiant skin.
My Skin’s Forever Breaking Out and Acne Prone. Won’t This Create More Congestion?
Short answer: no. Long answer: it’s important to understand the cause of why you have breakouts. This can stem from so many avenues, such as the use of an occlusive ingredient in your skin care that is trapping the skin from breathing and functioning at its optimal, natural ability. You may find that your skin ‘breaks-out’ when you swap from one skincare range to another. Generally speaking, if you have been using an occlusive range, then swap to a well formulated range, the ‘break-out’ is actually your skin finally breathing, releasing the blocked skin cells and everything that was trapped underneath it. So many view this as some form of reaction to the new skin care range, rather than looking at what the original topical treatment had been. That’s why the decision usually links back to staying with what gave them ‘clearer’ skin before, yet the desired results still don’t present and the skin remains break-out prone.
Alternatively, those pesky little visitors to your skin may be caused systemically; through hormones and internal dietary issues (in which case be sure to visit your GP). The best approach to this skin type is to stay away from harsh granules and go for micro-beads that are rounded to enable gentle gliding exfoliation. As with sensitive skin types, a cleanser will always be a more comfortable option. Look for ingredients such as AHA’s Glycolic or Salicylic to remove grime and penetrate oil to break down pore-clogging dead skin cells.
My Skin’s Normal. What Is Best?
Normal skin types are generally fine to use any form of exfoliating agent. It’s always best to find a scrub that has granular spheres to ensure a gliding motion over the skin, and be sure to follow your exfoliating step with a hydrating serum and moisturizer.
I Already Use a Body Scrub. Can I Use This On My Face?
No. The reason the product has been designed for the body is because the body has thicker more resilient skin, so by using this product on the fine skin on our face will cause undue trauma, be too abrasive and generally will leave the skin sore, inflamed and dehydrated.
Having said that, if you’re prone to sensitive skin patches on your body, then by all means use your face wash as a body wash to help rebuild the strength in those areas.