Who doesn’t love how skin feels after a professional exfoliation? It’s so soft and silky, and it’s impossible not to touch, even though we know we’re not supposed to (don’t let your esthetician see you!). As an esthetician myself and now as a formulator of spa skin care products, I am fascinated by all of the methods of exfoliation available today. There is truly a perfect exfoliant for everyone, and it’s a process that many of us could do more often than we do.
The function of our skin is complex and highly influenced by multiple factors such as age, climate, diet and hormones, just to name a few. Healthy skin completely renews itself every 28-30 days, so it’s continuously going through its own natural exfoliation process. Did you know that the dust in our homes is partly composed of our dead skin? Eww. By assisting our skins’ natural exfoliation process, we ensure that our skin stays free and clear of dead skin cells. At the same time, we promote good absorption of the products we apply afterwards. Exfoliation also acts to even the texture of our skin and can help improve skin tone.
There are two main categories of exfoliation: Mechanical and Chemical. These two categories generally encompass all of the various methods of exfoliation available to us. There are too many methods to cover in this one little article, but here are some of the most common.
Mechanical Exfoliation: It may sound a bit scary, but in reality, mechanical exfoliation simply refers to a product or machine that uses the physical act of “scrubbing”. Microdermabrasion, brushing and of course your classic scrub are all mechanical exfoliation methods. If a scrub is your exfoliant of choice, look for a facial scrub that has gentle and fine textured polishers like jojoba beads or bamboo powder so it doesn’t scratch your skin. We chose bamboo powder when formulating Face Addiction Skin Care’s Renew Exfoliation.
Chemical Exfoliation: If you think that sounds worse than mechanical exfoliation, fret not. Chemical exfoliation methods can give amazing results and are pain-free. Usually, all that is felt during this type of treatment is a light tingling or pricking feeling. Examples of chemical exfoliants include those formulated with naturally derived acids like glycolic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid, as well as enzymatic peels. Instead of scrubbing, chemical exfoliants focus on dissolving the bonds that keep our skin cells together. The percentage of the acids and pH, or level of acidity, of the product determines the strength of the peel. These factors are things you can discuss with your esthetician prior to your treatment. The higher the percentage and lower the pH, the more intense the peel will be and feel. We designed the Refine Exfoliation from Face Addiction Skin Care to not be too intense.
Whichever method you choose, be sure it is suited to your skin type. Your esthetician would be happy help you determine which exfoliation method is best for you.
So, go forth and exfoliate (at least once a week) and enjoy experiencing all the wonderful ways we can keep our skin healthy and silky smooth!
Written and submitted by Nicole Verzyden, Managing Director of Spa Addiction Business Specialists and Face Addiction Skin Care