Having a glowing skin is the dream of every woman irrespective of skin tone or age but how many of us really do what it takes to achieve it? It goes beyond topically applying skin care products on the skin. Have you heard of skin exfoliation?
Skin exfoliation is the removal of dead skin cells from the skin to reveal new skin. Yes, Our skin is constantly renewing itself, growing new skin cells to replace the surface skin cells that grow old, die and fall or slough off. Think of exfoliation as taking out the trash in your skin. You definitely don’t want to carry trash around.
Every minute of every day, between 30,000 and 40,000 dead skin cells flake away. Factors like age and dry skin can mean that dead skin cells don’t fall away as easily as they should. When these cells build up, they can make the complexion look rough and pasty and can also contribute to the clogged pores that lead to adult acne. Exfoliating also speeds up the renewal of new skin cells. It helps to reduce the outbreak of pimples and acne.
There are two ways of exfoliating the skin: the physical and chemical peel process.
THE PHYSICAL PROCESS: These skin exfoliants typically are facial scrubs, creamy cleansers with tiny, rough particles. As you gently massage the exfoliant over the surface of your face and skin, the friction works to loosen the old skin cells.
The physical skin exfoliants are readily available in drugstores and easy to use. They are particularly good for people with oily skin or acne, as they remove skin cells and debris that clog pores, but only if you don’t scrub too hard as this can cause further irritation. You can also exfoliate naturally with sugar and olive or coconut oil.
CHEMICAL PEEL: A chemical skin exfoliant uses gentle acids to dissolve whatever bonds are preventing the outer layer of dead skin cells from falling off your face and body. There are two main types of chemical skin exfoliants, those that include an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) and those that include a beta hydroxy acid (BHA):
- Alpha hydroxy acids: are derived from different foods, from fruits, such as apples and grapes, to milk. Some of the most common AHAs to look for on product labels are glycolic acid, lactic acid, malic acid, alpha-hydroxyoctanoic acid, and triple fruit acid. An alpha hydroxy acid is best for people with dry or thickened skin.
- Beta hydroxy acids: are the chemical cousins of alpha hydroxy acids, but are more oil-soluble and therefore better at exfoliating oily skin or acne-prone skin. The best known beta hydroxy acid is salicylic acid. On product labels, look for salicylate, sodium salicylate, beta hydroxybutanoic acid, or tropic acid.
So in conclusion, regularly exfoliating your skin will clear acne and breakouts, improve skin texture, reduce the appearance of large pores, remove signs of aging and also makes for better absorption of our skin care products.