Exfoliation soothes and smooths skin as it get rids of the skin’s dry cells along with excess oil and accumulated dirt. Thick, dull-looking skin is actually due to the accumulation of dead skin cells. Exfoliation is one of the key techniques that address certain skin issues as well as to achieve healthy, radiant skin. Exfoliation transforms skin no matter what skin type and address certain skin conditions.
Exfoliation should be carried out at home, and not just during infrequent visits at the spa. Harsh stripping products such as a number of astringents contain several chemicals that may provide temporary effects but permanent side effects. Although such products can completely kill germs and acne-causing bacteria, it dries up skin which leads to irritation and even worse breakouts in the future. Once the oil content of the skin’s surface becomes imbalance or over-dry, sebaceous glands overreact and produce even more sebum; thereby starting another series of breakouts.
One safest way to reduce bacteria on the skin is exfoliation as it unclogs congested pores.
Nonetheless, a majority of people’s concerns are not the pimples but rather the dark spots that have been left behind once a breakout has been healed. The best way to erase dark spots caused by acne is to get rid of damaged cells to encourage new formation of healthy skin cells.
Blackheads, whiteheads, and other bumps on the skin because of oil are also addressed by exfoliation.
Exfoliation is also essential for breaking up pigmented cells, allowing them to fade out. Hyperpigmentation are brown spots formed during pregnancy, old age, and hormonal changes. Along with vitamin C treatment, exfoliation will help lighten hyperpigmentation more quickly.
Exfoliation is very important especially during harsh weather conditions, especially during winter when temperatures drop very low and cause skin to get heavily parched and dry. Creams of any kind aren’t much help during this time because it only adds up cell buildup. With frequent exfoliation, dry skin cells will be eradicated and leave your skin feeling fresh and moist.
Fooling your skin into acting young once more is the primal task of exfoliation. If you are concerned regarding your fine lines and wrinkles, there is always a special kind of exfoliant using retinol or retinoic acid that will thoroughly start-up dull and old cells deep beneath the layers of skin. It help restore collagen and elastin. With continued exfoliation, skin will absolutely feel softer and making it look younger each day.
Exfoliation is not limited to damaged skin. Exfoliation can be done even if you already have a clear and pimple-free complexion. One way to add a sun-kissed glow to your skin is through exfoliation as it caters an even smoother appearance.
How Often Should You Exfoliate Your Skin
How often you exfoliate all depends on your skin condition and skin type. To be safe, exfoliate only at night and use a fairly strong sunscreen during daytime, even on cloudy days. Skin that has just been exfoliated is more susceptible to harmful UV rays. Don’t exfoliate more than two times in a week. Go from twice a week, to once a week, to every other week. Too much exfoliation is also not healthy. Also, avoid overuse of electronic exfoliation tools. If you use AHA masks, do not keep it on longer than it should; otherwise, skin shall be stripped off its barrier.
The Science of Exfoliation
The very first layer of the skin which you see every day is called epidermis, but it also consists a number of levels with designated roles. The top most layer of the epidermis comprise of keratin-filled cells and lipids. Keratin, a potent protein, gives you the protection your skin needs to survive. They provide a tough, protective barrier against free radicals to shield you from sun damage, microbial assault, pollution, and other elements. The top most layer is also responsible for locking in moisture.
We naturally shed millions of dead skin cells every day. In about 28-30 days, the top layer of the skin will be replaced by fresh new cells. But as we age, the turnover rate decelerates. With exfoliation, you’ll get an entirely new surface of rejuvenated skin cells without any delay. Mechanical and chemical exfoliation shed outer layer of congested pores, dig out dirt, and help reduce breakouts. As fresh new cells replace the old ones, the skin on the top outer layer becomes softer, smoother, and radiant.
The second layer of the skin is called the dermis, which is the skin’s layer of connective tissues. It contains the blood supply, fibroblasts, nerves, and sweat glands. It is not advisable that you apply any sort of physical or chemical component if you strip the first layer off before they have been replaced by fresh new cells. You are doing more harm than good if chemicals and other foreign substances reach the second layer of the skin. Over exfoliation will only result to irritations, rashes, thinning, hyperpigmentation, and increased vulnerability against UV exposure.
Guidelines and Tips for a Better Exfoliation
Not all exfoliants work the same, and it is harder than it seems. Regardless of skin type, exfoliation can also have negative effects if not done properly. There are two main types of exfoliation: mechanical and chemical. Mechanical exfoliation requires physical components such as seeds, loofah, nut shells, and grains to remove dead skin cells. If you use a facial scrub and your face turns red and feeling irritated, it means that the grains of the scrub are too big for you and you should discontinue usage. Using physical exfoliants can be inconvenient at times because some items could have uneven textures or are too rough or too large. Chemical exfoliation is more preferable for sensitive skin types because they are less likely to cause irritation. The two most common types of chemical exfoliants are AHAs and BHA. AHAs contain Lactic Acid and Glycolic Acid, while BHA contain Salicylic Acid. If both methods are non-irritant in any way, you can also alternate between mechanical and chemical exfoliation.