It makes no difference whether you are getting advice from a dermatologist or a beauty blogger, a clear skin routine always incorporates exfoliation. However, advice for how to exfoliate tends to vary from source to source. Some opt for textured scrubs, others suggest peels or masks, and still others recommend a natural exfoliate. So how do we know which method is right for us? First, it helps to know why experts agree that exfoliation is an important part of any skincare regimen.
Throughout the day, our skin is constantly producing new skin cells, while other cells are dying. In fact, “an average adult can shed up to 50,000 dead cells every minute”. These dead cells can not only cause complexions to look dull, but they also may clog pores, causing acne. This is why exfoliation is so important.
Perhaps one of the most common methods for exfoliation is scrubbing with a textured cleanser. These washes can include beads or sand that is meant to slough off dead skin cells. The problem is these formulas are often abrasive to skin. For example, scrubbing acne can cause irritation and further inflammation. Additionally, the aggressive nature of these scrubs can cause skin to redden if used too harshly. Formulas using abrasive materials to buff skin can actually cause tiny nicks which make for a breeding area for bacteria. While some gentler scrubs may do the job, it is still important to be cautious when using a textured wash.
Another less risky alternative to exfoliation is using a wash that incorporates naturally exfoliating ingredients, like Willow Bark Extract. These natural exfoliates help to turn over dead skin cells and regenerate new ones. Unlike the textured washes, there is no risk of rubbing skin raw when using a natural exfoliates. In this case, dead skin cells are gently washed away to reveal fresh and glowing skin.
A third and less frequent option is dermatologist administered chemical peels. A chemical peel is a much more aggressive means for removing dead skin, though potencies are diverse. More aggressive peels are able to reduce fine lines and age spots, though there is often some recovery time required, as skin can become reddened and flakey after a chemical peel.
Another thing to consider when exfoliating is the additional ingredients or formulas you will be using on your skin. For instance, HappyMe’s Natural Acne Wash uses Willow Bark Extract to gently exfoliate, while essential oils and powerful antioxidants even skin tone, hydrate, and protect against breakouts. After deciding which method for exfoliation fits your skin, you will be fast on your way to radiant skin that glows with health. Once dead skin is removed, a clearer more even complexion can be revealed.