How To Exfoliate At Home
The one word that mostly comes to mind when we hear 'exfoliation' is "scrubbing." Most people scrub their bodies anytime they take a bath or shower. But sadly, that alone does not qualify as exfoliation. Exfoliation is not only taking dirt out of the skin; it goes beyond that by giving the body a nice glow and helping the skin to stay moisturized, soft, and fresh.
The result you want to see in your skin after exfoliating mostly depends on the type of products used, skin tone, condition, and exfoliation process. This article seeks to teach how to exfoliate at home. But first, let us discover what exfoliation is and why it is necessary for your skincare routine.
What Is Exfoliation?
Exfoliation is the method of extracting dead skin cells from the outer part of the skin. There is so much to exfoliation than just removing dead skin cells. It also relaxes the facial muscles and smoothens up the skin. These are all results of taking out dead skin cells. To safely exfoliate at home, it is always best to know your skin type or skin tone, as this helps identify suitable products that will help give the desirable glow you are looking for.
How Do You Identify Your Skin Type/Skin Condition?
There are different types of skin. There is sensitive, normal, combination, dry, and oily skin. You may damage your skin while exfoliating if you do not know your skin type. Why? Because not all products may be suitable for your skin type. So, it's always best to seek a professional opinion on these products before use.
The same applies to identifying your skin condition. It is possible to have clear, semi-clear, or unclear skin. Clear skin, as its name denotes, is skin with no acne and blemishes. Semi-clear skin, on the other hand, has some mild acne or blemishes on the skin. Whiles unclear skin has severe acne and blemishes as its outstanding features.
The knowledge about all these is handy for getting the right products for your skin, which is very important.
Types Of Exfoliation
According to the American Academy of Dermatology(AAD), there are two ways of exfoliating the skin. One can either choose to exfoliate mechanically or chemically. Mechanical exfoliation involves using materials like sponges, brushes, or scrubs to remove dead skin cells from the external part of the skin (outer layer).
There are more thorough processes of mechanical exfoliation, like microdermabrasion. Microdermabrasion is a cosmetic process by which the dead skin cells are removed by using an abrasive spray on the skin to treat blemishes like scars, wrinkles, stretch marks, etc. The rough part of the skin wears away from the body when this abrasive spray is applied.
Mechanical exfoliation is a fine method or procedure to deal with severe or even mild skin conditions, but it can be expensive. Chemical exfoliation, on the other hand, refers to removing dead skin cells with chemical products. These products dissolve the dead cells and make it easier to get them off. Chemical exfoliation is a good way to exfoliate the skin, especially for acne-prone or unclear skin.
That is because these skin conditions can get irritable if scrubbed too hard and may open wounds on the skin if care is not taken. Therefore, it is advisable for people with acne or blemishes to go in for this method. Use skincare products containing chemicals such as salicylic acid to help control and treat acne.
Nonetheless, there are other forms of products that contain retinol or benzoyl peroxide, but you should be careful with these products since they may result in acne breakouts. On this note, we shall venture into the kinds of exfoliants.
Kinds of Exfoliants
There are various exfoliants, namely, natural and chemical exfoliants. Natural exfoliants are mostly made from natural or organic ingredients or materials. Some distinct examples include oats, milk, strawberries, carrots, sugar, etc. You can make your organic scrubs by adding some essential oils to sugar, any of these ingredients, or any other natural ingredient with active properties or nutrients that are effective for skin treatment.
For instance, you can make a facial scrub out of brown sugar with sweet almond or vitamin C oil. Chemical exfoliants are mostly acidic-based chemicals that help remove dead skin cells by dissolving them. Exfoliants with a lower concentration of acidic-based chemicals are easy to buy at the pharmacy or a cosmetic shop.
However, the higher concentrations are not as easy to get and are mostly used by dermatologists. Studying your skin type before using any exfoliator on the market would be best. The reason for this is so that it will not damage or irritate your skin. Sometimes, some quality skincare products can be so expensive.
An easy way to maintain your beautiful skin is to use home methods. We will then proceed on how to exfoliate naturally at home.
How To Exfoliate In A Natural Way At Home
The best way to exfoliate at home is to use physical exfoliants. These physical exfoliants will remove the dead skin cells when you rub the exfoliants gently on the skin.
1. The Products To Use
The products to use will determine how effective the exfoliation will be. The reason is that not all products are good for you, depending on your skin type. So, the first question you should ask is, "what works for my skin?". Surely you may have applied many products and can tell which ones are better for your skin.
If not, you can go on a skin observation period where you do a patch test with several skin products to ascertain which product is friendly to your skin. But, if you know what works with your skin, you should know if you react to specific ingredients in these products. If you are going to use an organic product or even a chemical, find out if they can cause your skin to irritate or become itchy and red.
If you do not do this, you may harm your skin more than achieve the results you intend to get.
2. Choose The Type Of Exfoliation That Best Suits Your Skin Type And Skin Condition
A light-complexioned person with dry but sensitive skin may undergo a mild chemical exfoliation process. This process is like using salicylic wash/gel/acid to dissolve the dead skin cells, then wiping it off with a warm washcloth or cotton after gently rubbing it into the skin. Afterward, thoroughly cleanse the face with short, light strokes.
A dark-skinned person with dry skin and many whiteheads but without acne should opt for a more extensive form of mechanical exfoliation. Use a sugar scrub with a sponge to thoroughly scrub the skin and eliminate all the dirt and dead cells. A person with oily skin should go in for a stronger treatment. Depending on the skin type and tone, this treatment can be either with chemical or physical exfoliants.
Some treatments tend to make you darker or result in more breakouts than necessary when used, which should be avoided.
3. Use Lukewarm Water And Apply Products In A Gentle Way
Make sure to use lukewarm water during this process. That balance between cold and hot water is essential. Lukewarm water is effective not only for cleaning dirt but also because it massages and relaxes the skin. It helps the skin muscles relax after the pressure has been applied to the body while exfoliating. It also aids the skin in retaining moisture so that it does not dry up fast.
The product application should be done gently to avoid cuts and wounds on the skin. Apply products gently in circular motions for about 30 seconds, then rinse when applying a chemical exfoliant. Using a mechanical exfoliator, you can make short, light strokes on your skin.
4. Always Apply Moisturizer
After exfoliation, the skin can become dry. The reason is that the exfoliation removes the skin's oil and grease. Therefore, you need to apply a moisturizer to retain the moisture in the skin. The result is that it makes the skin smoother and fresher. Moisturizers also help not to get sunburned easily. They protect the skin from drying out.
5. Exercise And Take In As Much Water As You Can Everyday:
Water is life, especially for your skin. Drinking water keeps you hydrated all the time. The fluid in you becomes sweaty when you do something vigorous, which keeps your body soft and gives your skin a nice glow. It is obvious when you are dehydrated because you become pale, and your body dries up fast.
Exercising makes your insides warm, and the body excretes sweat to keep the body cool. This activity helps in making the skin stay moisturized.
6. Exfoliate At Your Convenience
The type of exfoliation you choose, your skin type, and the results you are looking forward to gaining after exfoliation will determine how often you should exfoliate. I will advise you not to exfoliate too often if you have sensitive skin. One to three times a week should be enough for anybody, but it still depends on you.
Too much exfoliation, however, may cause your skin to be irritated, and that is not a healthy skin treatment.
Benefit of Exfoliation
At the end of the day, why is exfoliation important? Why should you incorporate exfoliation into your skincare routine? The major benefit of exfoliation is that it makes the skin healthy by removing dirt from the skin pores and dead skin cells. It also enhances our general looks. Frequent exfoliation may even help reduce scarring, stretch marks, or wrinkles.
Again, depending on the method of exfoliation, it may be a form of an anti-aging treatment.
In a nutshell, exfoliation is an important aspect of a healthy skincare routine. It is, therefore, advisable to incorporate it into your skincare routine. However, although it is good to exfoliate, it can cause real damage if not done safely. The surest way to know whether you are doing it right depends on your results and if it matches the treatment.
Any irritability, burns, or itchiness can signify something is wrong, and you should immediately seek a dermatologist's advice. It is important to know your skin type and the best products to get the desired glow.
What happens if you don't exfoliate?
If you don't exfoliate, your skin will likely suffer from it. Your skin will be built up of dead cells, resulting in dry, dull, patchy, flaky skin. The pores of your skin will also be clogged with these impurities. The result is an uneven skin tone with a lot of blemishes.
How can I exfoliate my skin naturally?
To exfoliate your skin naturally, gently rub any natural exfoliant on your skin. The dead skin cells will be cleaned away. Some natural exfoliants include finely ground sugar, cinnamon, oatmeal, baking soda,finely ground almonds or salt.
At what age should you start exfoliating?
It would help if you started exfoliating your skin at around 17 years.
What is the difference between a scrub and an exfoliator?
The distinction between a scrub and an exfoliator is that scrub is a skincare product that contains tiny exfoliating particles. In contrast, an exfoliator is a mechanical or chemical agent that removes dead cells from the skin's surface.
When should you exfoliate, morning or night?
It is best if you exfoliate in the morning rather than at night. This is because of the oils left on your face from the sebum gland overnight. You may be able to remove all the impurities, dead skin, and oil effortlessly when you exfoliate in the morning.
How do you get clear skin?
To get clear skin, you need to wash your face two times daily, use a mild cleanser, moisturize daily and put on acne-fighting agents. You also need to exfoliate, get your beauty sleep, exercise, and be intentional about your makeup routine. Choose make-up that won’t clog yor pores and produce acne or blemishes.
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