Exfoliation: the act, state, or process of exfoliating; also the act of being exfoliated or scaled off. (as defined by Dictionary.com) But the real question is WHY should you be exfoliating? When is it important? How much? What kind of exfoliator should I use…?
Cleansing and moisturizing your skin alone, is simply not enough. While it is incredibly important to take the time to wash the grime away after a long day, and deeply nourish and moisturize the skin, what happens when you skip the crucial step of exfoliating?
Well, first things first. Exfoliation helps to remove dry and flaky skin from the surface. Teens to those of us in our mid-thirties have a skin cell turnover period of 14-35 days. As we get older, this rate of skin cell renewal continues to slow down, and this results in dry, dull, and lack luster looking skin. By incorporating a great exfoliator, this actually helps amplify the rate of our skin’s turnover, which results in our skin looking radiant and youthful longer! Who doesn’t want to look like they’re 40 when entering their late 60s? I know I do!
Second, think about just how much moisturizer you are slathering on your skin to tone down those dry and rough patches. Do you feel like to apply more moisturizer, the more hydrated you feel? But it simply isn’t working? This is actually super common. The thought process is that you will get better results by using more of the product. Sadly… Not the case. By applying more of that expensive moisturizer to the unexfoliated skin, you are in fact, just wasting product. You are trying to add hydration to skin cells that are already dead, and what benefit does that serve? Not to mention the fact that the dead skin cells have created a bit of a “barrier” on the top layer of the skin, and this in turn, makes it more difficult for your actual skin to reap the benefits of your moisturizer.
Next, have you considered the “EW” factor? Yes, for lack of a better way of describing it (and if you’ve read enough of my posts, you know I’m a “tell it like it is” kind of person) what do you think the dead skin cells are harboring? Bacteria, lots and lots of bacteria. Lack of exfoliation can lead to painful acne and visible flaking of the skin. In addition to the visible components of the dead skin accumulating on your face and the effect that it has on how your makeup applies and wears, you can really be causing harm to your skin by not helping the skin cells regenerate properly.
So what should you be using? Chemical? Physical? Norwex towel? This is to be evaluated on a personal basis. There is not a “catch-all” response to what you should be using! Personally, I enjoy washing my face with a mild cleanser and a soft rag to gently scrub away debris – AGAIN, GENTLE is the key component here. I’m the mornings, I like to use a scrub with small biodegradable grit to it (this is a physical exfoliator), I enjoy the Clear Pore Cleanser (link here) as it gently removes whatever is lying on top of the skin and cleans out the pores as well. In the evenings, I truly enjoy using a chemical exfoliation approach by applying the Overnight Resurfacer (Link here) in an attempt to gently remove the dull and dead skin with the active acids, and replenish the skin with oils and fatty acids.
Please connect with me directly so we can chat about what may work best for YOU! Again, there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” answer to skincare, so I would love to help you find what will work best for your unique needs!
Remember the key components for successful skincare are: