When it comes to establishing an exfoliation routine, there’s such a wide variety of products and advice out there that it can be hard to know where to begin. Learn the basics of facial and body exfoliants and how to refresh and smooth your skin properly.
What Is an Exfoliant?
Over time, dead skin cells, hair particles, and other organic materials build up on your skin’s surface. Exfoliants can remove this build-up by removing the top layer of skin either chemically or with a physical scrub. This new, fresh layer of skin retains hydration better than the old top layer, leaving your skin soft and supple. Exfoliation can help reduce acne and also increases cell regeneration and collagen production to help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
When it comes to physical exfoliants (scrubs) for your body, the overall thickness and acid concentration are much higher than facial exfoliants. This makes them ideal for those tougher areas of your skin, such as your knees, heels, and elbows.
Using light pressure, work the exfoliant in a circular motion on the desired area, making sure to rinse well afterward. Apply chemical body exfoliants this way as well. If you’re using a cream- or serum-based body exfoliant, gently apply it until it absorbs.
Never use body exfoliants on your face—their high acidity level can cause skin irritation and breakouts.
You can also use chemical or physical facial exfoliants. At-home chemical exfoliants are usually in the form of a face wash or peel and are ideal for sensitive skin. Professional peels, such as a glycolic peel, are strong, safe options performed by a dermatologist or aesthetician. The custom acid concentration penetrates and removes the top layer of skin, leaving a more even and smooth complexion.
Physical facial exfoliants use scrubs, like salt or sugar, to scrape off skin build-up and dirt, as well as the outer layer of skin. Never use rough, harsh motions when exfoliating. Apply your facial exfoliant gently and use circular motions for about 30 seconds. Always moisturize the exfoliated area after treating it.
Both at-home exfoliants and clinical treatments can help you achieve refreshed, smooth skin. Not sure how to start an exfoliation routine? The Dermatology Clinic offers professional-grade at-home exfoliant products and custom in-office chemical peels to help treat all skin types. Our team will review your skincare concerns and find the right treatment plan for you. Schedule an appointment at our Baton Rouge or Walker clinic to start your journey to more healthy, vibrant skin today.