Why scrubbing away dead skin is made out to be such a big deal and why you should care
1. What is exfoliation?
Your skin cells age and die regularly and new cells are formed. This life-cycle of skin cells is called skin cell turnover and it changes as we age.
When we are babies, our pink, plump skin turns over approximately every 14 days. When we are teens, cells turn over approximately every 21 to 28 days. As we age, cell turnover slows down to 30 to 40 days, and after we reach 50 and older, cell turnover can slow to 1-1/2 to 3 months.
This process of renewal is basically exfoliation (shedding) of the epidermis or dead skin cells.
2. Why is it important?
When this natural shedding slows or stops due to sun damage, dry skin, oily skin, genetics, or different skin disorders, your skin looks dull, dry, or flaky. Further, accumulated dead skin may clog pores and lead to blemishes, white bumps and uneven skin tone.
So an exfoliant helps aid this dead cell shedding process and allows new skin cells to surface. This makes the surface of the skin smoother allowing light to reflect better imparting it a ‘natural glow’.
3. How to choose the right exfoliating product?
There’s two things to watch out for: the size of the exfoliating particles and the product base. Make sure the exfoliating beads are not plastic ( yes, several mass market exfoliants have plastic beads !!) and base suits your skin type. If you have an oily or combinational skin a gel based exfoliant such as Livelyclean Honey Exfoliating face Cleansing Gel with gentle particles of Lodhra is good. For those with drier skin types Apricot Sparkle Skin radiance scrub with slightly firmer particles of Persian walnut shell grains suspended in a creamy base is better.
4. What is the best method to use an exfoliator or a scrub?
Get your face wet before exfoliating. Ideally, you would have cleansed it with a gentle and mild foaming cleanser and used a toner (optional). Rub the exfoliator onto your face, covering all areas with the grits. Massage it in, using a circular motion for a few minutes. Gently work the exfoliator into the pores of your face. Wipe the exfoliator off your face or body using a clean cloth, or rinse with warm water and then pat dry.
5. How often do I exfoliate?
That depends on your unique skin type but mostly a maximum of 2-3 times a week is the right frequency. This way, not only you’re regularly clearing away dead skin but also not being too abrasive on your skin. In case you have pimples, be very careful to avoid touching them while scrubbing.