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How To Exfoliate Skin – Methods, Importance & Tips

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Consider regular skin exfoliation to make your skin nourished and radiant. This will not just prevent premature signs of ageing but also help in preventing skin deformities in many cases.

What Is Skin Exfoliation?

It is an extensive process of removing the dead cells from the upper layer of the skin or the epidermis. Various chemical and mechanical methods are used for exfoliating the skin. While ancient Egyptians used pumice stones, alcoholic beverages were applied to the skin in the medieval period. Today, there are dedicated products and equipment’s that can help you get rid of dry and damaged skin cells, giving healthier and younger skin tissues, thus bringing a natural glow to our face.

Also Read: How To Remove Dead Skin From Face?

How To Exfoliate Skin?

The methods largely depend on the skin type and the body part you wish to clean. While the exfoliating dry skin on the face is most common, you can also exfoliate feet, hands, back, and other body parts. Some common ways to exfoliate your skin include:

  • Chemical Exfoliation Of Skin – In chemical exfoliation, certain chemicals like alpha hydroxy acid, beta hydroxy acid, salicylic acid, Retinol, etc. are used that make our dead skin cells less gluey and easy to shed. To chemically exfoliate peeling skin, various kinds of solutions are prepared that are applied to the skin. They peel the upper layer of the skin and get rid of damaged skin cells. Since it also works as an excellent anti aging solution, it is known as the best way to exfoliate your skin.
  • Mechanical Exfoliation Of Skin – As the name suggests, a mechanical force is used to exfoliate skin in this technique. Besides pumice stone, there are different styles of brushes that one can use to exfoliate sensitive skin. These brushes have sharp micro edges that can rub off dead skin cells. Dermabrasion is a kind of way to exfoliate your skin, with specifically designed rotating instruments.
  • Other Methods Of Skin Exfoliation – Dermaplaning is an advanced approach that gives an evident result. Furthermore, you can also exfoliate your skin while performing hair removal by waxing or wet-shaving, but these may be abrasive to the skin.

Also Read: Different Types Of Chemical Peels

How Often Should You Exfoliate?

Ideally, it would depend on your skin texture. For an average skin type, the frequency of skin exfoliation must be 2-3 times a week. But for sensitive skin, only once a week (or even once in 2 weeks if your skin is extremely sensitive). If you have an oily skin, then you can exfoliate more often. Exfoliating focuses more on the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) to get optimum results.

For treatments at a skin clinic, the Dermatologist would recommend and guide you through the entire procedure. Like in a chemical peel, a break of at least a few weeks between different sessions is required. It is recommended to visit a Dermatologist to understand the course of skin exfoliation.

Why Is Skin Exfoliation Important?

The lower layer or dermis of our skin keeps producing fresh skin cells, the older cells simply accumulate on the surface. These keratin-filled cells can pile up with age, and make our face look dry and rough. Even though our body sheds these dead skin cells naturally, the process slows down with age.

When we exfoliate dead skin cells, the damaged or overly keratin-filled cells are removed. This makes way for younger skin cells to reach the epidermis layer. It is one of the most vital benefits of exfoliating your skin. When performed regularly, it will make your skin look younger and evenly toned.

Also Read: Sensitive Skin Care Routine

Why You Shouldn’t Over- Exfoliate Your Skin?

While there are numerous benefits of exfoliating your skin, overdoing can backfire as well. Our skin has a natural process of shedding dead cells. If you over-exfoliate, then it can drastically slow down the process of developing new skin cells. Sometimes, we scrub our skin way too much, which can cause irritation or even widen our pores. If you exfoliate your skin every day, then it would only take away the natural oil from your skin making it look dull. Therefore, even if you are using the best way to exfoliate your skin, you should not overdo it.

What Are The Different Tips For Skin Exfoliation?

  • If you are getting a chemical peel, then you should be extremely careful. Chemical peeling is a sensitive process and should only be performed by certified therapists under Dermatologist supervision.
  • Before using any over the counter or readily available medical product, make sure that your skin is not allergic to any component present in it. It is also recommended to get prescribed products by a dermatologist, who is specialized in the task.
  • While performing Microdermabrasion, try not to harm your skin. Don’t do it yourself and seek the help of a trained professional.
  • Don’t use harsh products on your face. For instance, body scrubs are not meant to be used on the face.
  • Avoid using heavy cosmetic products right after exfoliation. Use natural products and give your skin some time to heal.
  • Try not to over-exfoliate, particularly if your skin is dry or sensitive.
  • The best time to exfoliate dead skin cells is early morning as our body regenerates skin cells while we rest at night.
  • Don’t wax right after you exfoliate sensitive skin. If you have got a chemical peeling on a body part, then avoid waxing or shaving for a week at least.

Also Read: How To Remove Dull Skin From Face?


Can you exfoliate to peel the sunburn?

If you have got a recent sunburn patch, then you should avoid using any skin exfoliation technique. Try to keep your body hydrated and apply skin-friendly moisturizers. Give your body some time to heal and let it shed the damaged tissues naturally. If it leaves a sun damage spot, then you can exfoliate the skin after a while.

Do I exfoliate before or after cleansing?

Ideally, you should follow the rule of cleansing first and then exfoliate. This is followed by moisturizing and sun-blocking which is the best way to exfoliate your skin. In this way, all the dirt, sweat, and impurities are first removed from the skin, letting an exfoliating agent get rid of all the dead cells successfully.

Is it okay to exfoliate dry skin?

Exfoliating dry skin, especially on face requires a careful approach. You should not overdo it and restrict the frequency to once or twice a week. Carefully observe the exfoliate skin before and after results and make sure your skin won’t develop flacks or tears. Make sure you keep your skin moisturized so that the new cells won’t be damaged.

Also Read: Treatment For Dry Skin On Face

To get dedicated assistance from certified experts and experienced dermatologists, visit your nearest skin clinic. Professional diagnosis and precision in a procedure are extremely important to ensure a safe and effective procedure for skin exfoliation.

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About The Author

Kushneet Kukreja

Kushneet Kukreja

A postgraduate in Biotechnology from Kingston University and an ISSA Certified Specialist in Fitness & Nutrition, Kushneet Kukreja is a passionate writer who works in close association with the dermatologists at our head office to generate valuable and scientifically accurate content for our blog.

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