Skin exfoliation is among a few of the best ways to improve your skin’s health, texture, glow, and overall appearance. Skin exfoliation refers to the method of removing the old dead skin cells present on the outermost skin surface. Two primary methods are physical exfoliation and chemical exfoliation.
While skin exfoliation requires knowing the type and characteristics of skin before subjecting it to the most suitable exfoliation procedure to help evade any chances of skin damage, the exfoliation process or shedding of dead skin cells is normal and occurs naturally as well. This article provides a brief understanding of what exfoliation is, its benefits, its two main types, and which type suits your skin the best.
Why is skin exfoliation important?
As mentioned above, shedding old dead skin cells is a completely normal thing that happens naturally as well. Our skins naturally go through the process of shedding unwanted old dead skin cells once every 30 days or so. New skin cells replace the old dead skin cells that shed away. This restores the skin to a healthier look. However, old dead skin cells sometimes do not shed completely on their own. Consequently, unshed dead skin cells on our skin could result in dry skin, dull complexion, and clogged pores, thus diminishing the overall skin health. A regular exfoliation procedure or facial routine can help overcome these issues easily.
How does exfoliation benefit your skin?
Whether exfoliation works well and benefits skin or not, is a common question asked by many. And the simple answer to it is: Yes. It it shown to work very well on certain skin types. However, this requires following expert tips and being careful to damage the skin in the process. As for the benefits of exfoliation, it does benefit the skin in several other ways apart from removing the uncleared old dead skin cells from your skin. Some noticeable benefits of exfoliation include:
- Exfoliation leaves your skin with a smoother feel and brighter look.
- It enhances the absorption tendency of your skin as well. Due to this, the effectiveness of topical skincare products when applied to your skin is significantly improved.
- Routine exfoliation also helps in preventing clogged pores which reduces the number of breakouts.
- Long-term exfoliation is related to increasing the production of collagen. Collagen is a protein that improves your skin’s elasticity. This helps reduce the likelihood of wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging for as long as possible. Collagen is also an important protein for glowing and vibrant skin.
Still, to achieve all these benefits of exfoliation, it is important to understand your skin type and follow the correct exfoliation method.
What to expect from physical exfoliation?
Physical exfoliation is the process of manual scrubbing or simply rubbing your skin using any product or method to remove dirt and slough away the outer skin layer from any dead skin cells. Common products used for physical exfoliation include a granular scrub, loofahs, cleansing scrubs, and body brushes. The biggest advantage of physical exfoliation is that it can be done at home. Many physical skin exfoliants are available at home.
Physical exfoliation brings immediate and quicker results than chemical as well. It also eliminates any adverse chemical effects on your skin that may result from chemical interaction of your skin during chemical exfoliation.However, the downside of physical exfoliation is that if done incorrectly, for example using harsh application instead of being gentle, can result in skin irritation as well as trans-epidermal water loss.
What to expect from chemical exfoliation?
As the name suggests, chemical exfoliation refers to the process of using chemicals or acids to get rid of dead skin cells. Chemical exfoliating products may include hydroxy acids and retinol with enzymes that exfoliates and renews your skin for a brighter, fresher, and smoother surface. Different types of chemical exfoliation products are available for different types of skin.
Remember that it’s important to be aware about your skin type or the type of ingredients used in any product you select, as chemical exfoliation can cause harm to your skin. It is always better to consult a dermatologist first instead of buying an over-the-counter product. If you aren’t considering consulting a dermatologist, you may want to rely on natural handmade soap bars to cleanse the skin in a safer manner. To learn further, kindly read about how the benefits of handmade soap bar on our website or anywhere else on the internet.
What works best for my skin type?
Every type of exfoliation isn’t recommended for every type of skin. This means improper exfoliation for the wrong skin type can do more harm than good. Therefore, it is important to be aware of your skin type first before exfoliating your skin. Here is a simple summary of different skin types based on how they are likely to react and what course of action should you follow.
Easy to develop irritation and may sting or burn after product use especially if it’s for the first time. Always talk to a skin expert or your dermatologist for better guidance.
This refers to a skin type that has a very high potential to not negatively react to most skincare products and cause irritation. In such a case, it is more of a personal choice to how you want to exfoliate and/or what product to use for this skin type.
Usually considered as rough or flaky with the possibility for some AHAs to penetrate through the top skin layer. This helps moisturizers to be more effective in hydrating new skin cells.
Skin type that usually reflects a shiny and a greasy or oily outer surface and feels. Stronger physical and chemical exfoliation procedures can easily be applied on oily skin surfaces.
Combination skin type
Combination skin type refers to the skin type that has both dry and oily areas. A neutral exfoliation method or product can be ideal for this skin type.
For skins that have mild to moderate levels of acne, consulting a skin expert or dermatologist is highly recommended, rather than relying on some over-the-counter skincare products.