Many people make the mistake of skipping exfoliation in their skincare program. But this is an essential step toward achieving healthier, smoother more radiant looking skin. In fact we would group it with cleansing, moisturizing and UV protection as the 4 most important steps in a basic skincare routine.
Put simply, exfoliation is the process of removing the outer layer of dead cells which are clinging to your skin. If the dead skin cells build up without being removed via exfoliation, they can make your skin dry out and appear old and less vibrant. While dead skin cells do slough away naturally as newer skin pushes through, exfoliation accelerates the process and ensures that newer, fresher skin is always shining through. Additionally, exfoliation increases the skins ability to absorb other products such as serums and moisturizers that can further improve its health and appearance.
When exfoliating delicate facial skin, it is important to use a gentle product. Specifically, one containing fine, soft particles. Harsher scrubs will often do more harm than good, while leaving the skin looking blotchy and red. Most skincare companies offer scrubs designed specifically for use on the face. Often these scrubs are combined with other nourishing ingredients that help hydrate and nourish the skin.
Step-By-Step Guide to Facial Exfoliation
- Moisten – Splash lukewarm water over your entire face. Some people like to use a cleanser during this step, which is a good idea but isn’t absolutely necessary.
- Exfoliate – Apply an exfoliating product designed specifically for the face. Using your fingers or a soft exfoliating brush or sponge, gently massage the product onto the skin using small circular motions. Use caution under the eyes as the skin there tends to be thin and may damage easily. Some people recommend avoiding the area altogether.
- Rinse – Remove exfoliator using lukewarm water, as hot water can be very harsh on delicate facial skin.
- Dry – Gently pat the skin dry with a soft clean washcloth or towel.
- Moisturize – To complete the process, treat the newly exposed skin with a good moisturizer.