The difference between radiant, healthy skin and dull, congested skin that’s more prone to breakouts is exfoliation. However, like with many skincare techniques, there is a lot of misunderstanding about exfoliation, which can lead to errors and increased skin sensitivity. But don’t worry; we’ve outlined five frequent mistakes and what you should do instead.
Mistake 1: Not Exfoliating Enough
If you’ve ever questioned why your skin appears dull or has a rough texture beneath the surface, you’re probably not exfoliating enough. Exfoliation is important because it prevents the development of dead skin cells that can cause clogged pores, blackheads, and outbreaks.
Solution: The amount of exfoliation you should do depends on your skin type. Exfoliate only once or twice a week if you have sensitive skin, and use a very soft scrub. Other skin types may benefit from more frequent exfoliation. We recommend exfoliating 2 to 3 times per week if you have normal or dry skin, and up to 3 to 4 times per week if you have oily or acne-prone skin.
Mistake 2: Using Too many Exfoliating Products in Your Routine
While exfoliation should be done on a regular basis, you should avoid using too many exfoliating products in your daily or weekly skincare routine.
Solution: Make a weekly skincare regimen to ensure you don’t over-exfoliate. Plan up your exfoliation days for the week and then schedule your other exfoliating products around those days.
Mistake 3: Using Harsh Scrubs
While using a physical scrub to exfoliate can be immensely gratifying, it can be extremely harsh on your skin and cause a variety of skin problems. However, if you do it too often or too violently, you risk causing micro-abrasions on the skin’s surface or destroying your skin barrier. Skin sensitivity, discomfort, and even outbreaks might result as a result of this.
Solution: On your body, use only powerful physical scrubs and be gentle! Choose a cellulose scrub if you enjoy a physical scrub. Cellulose is a natural substance that clumps together when you rub the product into your skin, gently eliminating dead skin. It’s the gentlest type of physical exfoliator, and while it may appear that you’re scraping dead skin off your face, what you’re really doing is the formula balling up as it reacts with dead skin cells.
Mistake 4: Not Hydrating Post-Exfoliation
Exfoliation eliminates dead skin cells from the surface of the skin, however, some exfoliants can also remove oils, leaving your skin feeling dry. This is why, after exfoliating, it’s critical to increase moisture to help maintain a healthy skin barrier.
Solution: Make sure you use a moisturizer after every exfoliation. Follow with essence, serum, and moisturizer, then seal it all in with a face oil if you really want to maximize your moisture.
Mistake 5: Exfoliating Before Going Into The Sun
Before going out in the sun, you should not exfoliate. When you exfoliate, you buff away the top layer of dead skin cells that might act as a ‘barrier’ for your new skin cells, leaving you with more sensitive skin that is more likely to burn.
Solution: The remedy is simple. Exfoliate at least one day (ideally two) before going out in the sun, and always wear a separate sunscreen with at least SPF 30.