Walk into any beauty store, and you will likely hear the word “exfoliation” thrown around. However, sometimes I can’t help but question whether exfoliation is just another unnecessary practice encouraged to sell products or really is a useful addition to my skincare routine? Before you go jump on the bandwagon of your favourite beauty guru, know the facts. Exfoliation can be a beneficial practice, but if done incorrectly, can also involve counterproductive risks.
Exfoliation removes dead skin cells from the topmost layer of your skin, and can often leave your skin looking and feeling fresher. There are two methods of exfoliation: Chemical and Physical. Chemical exfoliants are generally acids, that once applied, dissolve dead skin cells. Don’t worry if chemical products are not your cup of tea though. You can also opt for mechanical exfoliation, and instead use a brush or scrub to physically remove dead skin.
Individuals who have added exfoliation to their skin care routine have seen a wide range of benefits. Some have found that regular use of exfoliants has improved the effectiveness of their topical skin care treatments, that now seep deeper into their skin. Studies have also shown that long-term exfoliation can significantly contribute to less acne breakouts, increased collagen production, and overall, younger looking skin.
However, it is important to know your skin type before beginning an exfoliation journey. Over-exfoliating can excessively irritate your skin, and if you’re unlucky, lead to accelerated aging. It is recommended that individuals with normal or combination skin exfoliate two to three times a week, and individuals with sensitive skin should limit the practice to once a week. Exfoliation may very well be the secret to eternal youthful skin, but if at any point you begin to notice irregularities like dryness, excess oil, or infection, revaluate your routine for possible over-exfoliation. It doesn’t hurt to try different methods and see which works best; everyone’s skin will react differently!
Written by: Prishni Seyone