I know you all must have skimmed through at least a dozen Skincare YouTube Videos before typing this daunting word ‘EXFOLIATION’ on your Google search bar. With all those baby YouTubers chanting ‘exfoliate your skin at least thrice a day to get a glowing, radiant skin’, or ‘DIY Exfoliation techniques’ etc. etc. All such videos, though are great content, lack one most important thing that must be looked into before presenting it in front of the whole world. ‘AUTHENTICITY’!
Yes, there are so much people stepping onto this YouTube bandwagon that authenticity of the content produced goes unmonitored. That’s where bloggers like me play our part! We are the people providing rationality and authenticity to this otherwise mad run. So, let’s ‘PIVOT’ towards our topic for the day — ‘EXFOLIATION’!
I have compiled below ‘an ultimate guide to exfoliation’ for you all. Believe me! After going through it, you will love me forever.
What is Exfoliation?
It is a process to remove dead skin cells accumulated over your newly regenerated skin that form a layer sabotaging the entry of essential nutrients and water into them, giving skin an otherwise dull stressed appearance.
I know you all be like ‘DEAD SKIN CELLS? NEW SKIN? WHAAATTTT?’
Your skin is also a living organ. And in fact, the largest organ of your body. Just like every organ in your body undergoes repair and regeneration continually, Skin goes through all these processes too. The difference is, other organs can easily get rid of those dead exhausted cells and can repair them with new one, but skin can’t let the past go that easily. It loves to somehow stay adhered to it. Therefore, it needs our help. We have to help him to let bygones be bygones and live in the present. And have to wipe those past footprints letting the present, newly generated cells to shine.
Exfoliation on the Skincare pedestal
Exfoliation is the second and one of the most crucial step in a skincare routine. No matter how beautifully you cleanse you skin, or how many lavish serums or creams you apply onto it. If you don’t exfoliate, your products can’t reach your viable skin cells. And hence, won’t produce the desired results.
The dead skin cells form a barrier over your new healthy cells. This prevents the entry of essential nutrients in your serums and creams to seep into those newly regenerated cells that need them for their healthy function.
How exfoliation helps?
Exfoliation helps get rid of this dead skin layer from your face, revealing new healthy skin.
Remember: Though the dead skin layer is thick enough to act as barrier, it is yet only a few microns thick. And hence, must not be over treated or over exfoliated.
Types of exfoliation?
There are 2 types of exfoliation
This category includes all your scrubs like sugar, beads, walnut, apricot, coarse salt scrubs.
The concept behind formulating them is to rub these rough materials on your face to abrade those dead skill cells off your face.
Despite being the most prevalent and simple method, it is yet the most dangerous. Because, it is quite easy to go overboard with those rough materials, abrading healthy skin along with the dead skin layer. This will cause irritation and soreness of skin and eventually your skin become more prone to damage and ageing.
The materials used for exfoliation are not biodegradable except, sugar. Hence, even if somehow you want to stick to this mode of exfoliation, sugar scrubs are the safest option. But remember, being biodegradable doesn’t lessen the harsh abrading effect of sugar crystals on your skin. It is just that it is short lived.
How to use?
Work it out on your face with a little water, and go over all areas of your face and neck not more than 15-30 seconds. But remember! They must not be used more than once a week.
The rationale behind formulation of these products is that the chemicals present in them inherently dissolve those dead exhausted cells off your face, unveiling the new healthy skin up front.
No need to fret! I know you all will be rolling your eyeballs right now that seriously, chemicals in skincare! NEVERRRR
Listen to me very carefully! Though they sound daunting and scary as hell, this is actually the safest and the most effective way of exfoliation, recognized and cherished throughout the world right now.
The most important quality in their course of action is that they work on a steady rate throughout the face, not going overboard on any specific area.
How to use?
Available as masks or exfoliating liquids, they are applied onto face after cleansing, left there for 5-10 minutes depending upon the instructions on the packaging, and then washed off.
Remember: If you are new to this process, gradually work your way through, from using once a week with the mildest form of exfoliating chemicals i.e., Salicylic acid to a not more than alternate days. The chemical exfoliants potency can then be gradually increased too like from Salicylic acid > Lactic acid > Glycolic acid > multi acid complexes
POINT TO PONDER
Exfoliating your face though is very beneficial for regulating your skin renewal and repair, it renders your skin more sensitive to sun damage. Therefore, using a sunscreen is a must. Otherwise, all the benefits of exfoliation will be nullified by sun damage, making your skin more prone to dark spots, irritation, acne and ageing.
So all Skincare Junkies, don’t let those big bumpy names and brands fool you!
For your skin health, exfoliation is a must! But if not done properly, will do more damage then good. Now you don’t have to worry about it at all. Going through this article has equipped you with the necessary tools to ace your exfoliation game. And now you know what and what not to do!