Friday, June 3, 2011

Exfoliate Right


Recently, I had a conversation with a friend about exfoliating. This all started because we were watching a basketball game and I mentioned to her how it literally hurts me to see the players wipe the sweat off their faces with a TOWEL!!! (told you it was painful) She then tells me that she doesn't understand why if it's good for their skin because it is helping them remove dead skin cells and proceeds to tell me that when she was younger she was taught to exfoliate with a washcloth. Yes it is true, I tell her, you can use a washcloth BUT NOT ON YOUR FACE. First of all the material is very rough for the delicate skin on your face and depending on how much pressure you are using you could be doing more harm than good. After this discussion we decided that it might be a good idea for me to blog about proper exfoliating techniques and maybe help you understand the importance of doing it right. 

Exfoliate: 1. To remove (a layer of bark or skin, for example) in flakes or scales; peel.

There are two types of exfoliation techniques, manual and chemical. Manual exfoliation is when you use a scrub either with your hands or a brush (designed to be used on the face) to remove dead skin cells another example of manual exfoliation is microdermabrasion. Chemical exfoliation is when you apply a chemical to your skin and let it sit for a few minutes without the need to rub or brush the skin. There are different types and grades of chemical exfoliants depending on their concentration level they have to be done by either an esthetician or dermatologist. 

There are different factors to consider when you want to exfoliate. It is recommended to do it at least once a week but no more than 3 times depending on how sensitive your skin is. You also want to make sure that if you use a scrub it is one that is made specifically for the face and that the actual beads that remove dead skin do not have rough edges as this can be very harmful to your skin because it can break skin and capillaries. Lastly I just want to mention that no matter how gentle and exfoliant claims to be you do not want to use it everyday as this can irritate your skin in the long run. 

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