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Glowing Skin to Flaunt! Exfoliation is your BFF

Let's talk #exfoliation. What's the big deal? Why is exfoliation even important?

It's more than just a beauty trend, it's super important #skincare.

There are numerous ways to flaunt smooth, glowing, healthy skin all year round from antioxidants, chemical peels, vitamins, laser skin care, you name it. However, one of the most effective ways to achieve the healthy sexy skin we all desire is the cheapest, and you can do it at home yourself! Exfoliate with proper use and your skin will never look better, but improper use and you’ll destroy your skin’s outer barrier. Feeling raw, tingly, and pain? You’re doing it wrong. It is easy to overdo it or to use the completely wrong routine for your skin type which is why many women choose to avoid exfoliation entirely. In truth, when done properly exfoliation can smooth rough patches, fade acne scars and dark spots, and reduce redness. Let’s dive into proper #skincare routines to get you on the way to your sexy glow!

When we are young our dead skin cells fall off on schedule every 28 days, but as we grow older skin cells begin to hang on for 40, 60, even 80 days. Even though you can't see these dead skin cells they make your skin look; dull, discolored, and cause breakouts. What's even worse is these dead cells can block your normal skincare products from absorbing into your skin properly, including makeup! When you exfoliate you are removing the dead skin cells you haven't shed yet to make way for happy, healthy new skin cells that are ready to absorb your beautiful #spraytan. The results? Glowing, even, smooth, sexy skin.

So, what is exfoliation? Exfoliating is the process of removing these dead skin cells from the outer layer of your skin so that your new healthy skin can shine through. Processes including chemical and/or physical exfoliants. Physical exfoliants are going to be those physical tools like; brushes, towels, sponges, etc. that physically displace dead skin cells while chemical exfoliation involves grabbing a liquid or gel to smooth and refine your skin. Chemical exfoliation typically includes hydroxy acids (AHAs) or beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) that loosen the glue-like substance your skin uses to hold dead skin cells together.

Okay, but what the heck do I use where? Typically, most of us are used to the physical exfoliators aka the “forceful” way. Reserve this for thicker skin like back & body to smooth rough, dry patches. Physical exfoliators are almost never a good idea for sensitive skin or rosacea…and stay away from your facial area. Chemical exfoliators are an awesome way to gently exfoliate sensitive skin, and facial area skin without over-doing it and causing damage. We are trying to avoid your body feeling the need to over-produce new skin cells because of aggressive exfoliation. What happens then? Well, you set yourself 10 steps backwards and now your new skin is producing new cells in overtime to repair the damage you’ve done to your skin. That extra production is clogging your pores with excess new skin cells. Use gentle acids to dissolve the glue that binds your skin together things that contain AHA & BHA. Let’s take a deeper dive into AHA & BHA.

AHA-best for normal, dry, sensitive or redness prone skin.

AHA are water soluble which means they exfoliate the surface of your skin by drawing in moisture while working to keep your face hydrated. AHAs are masters at ungluing dead skin cells to make skin brighter and smoother with consistent use, consistency is the key here. These superheroes come in a few forms like lactic, mandelic, glycolic, and tarteric acid. If you have sensitive skin or are a newbie start with lactic acid which tends to be the gentlest form. Try a small patch and wait for 10-15 minutes if your skin still appears to be normal with no change or sensitivity issues move onto glycolic acid which is a bit strong and faster acting.

BHA-best for oily or acne prone skin.

BHAs are oil soluble meaning the break down oil clogged pores to treat things like; blackheads, whiteheads, and zits. They are also anti-inflammatory meaning they’ll help mitigate some of the irritating effects BHAs can cause. And to make it even easier on you, there is only one major BHA which is salicylic acid, a longtime favorite in acne spot treatments.

So, we have a good idea of the different chemicals and tools to use, but seriously can someone just tell you exactly what to buy and make this easy? Below are some of our recommendations for routine exfoliation. Remember, it's a good idea to check with your dermatologist or primary physician for special skin care or concerns before starting any new skincare regimen.

Few notes to remember:

  • Face washes on the market with chemical exfoliants are only effective when left on the skin for a set amount of time. Yes, they remove makeup and debris with a quick wash but to really get in the pores they’ll need some time to work.

  • Stick with peels, pads, serums, toners, and moisturizers to really get deep

  • Oily skin=thin product like liquid or solution. Dry skin=cream. Combo skin=serum. Choosing the right product type helps it become more effective.

Recommended exfoliators:

How often you should exfoliate again depends on your skin type. Dead skin cells are building up every day, so some types will require more than others. For sensitive skin start off with a mild exfoliant like lactic acid and start with just once a week, working your way up to 3 times a week. Still not seeing results? Try moving up to a glycolic acid or salicylic acid 3x per week. Super oily skin? Ready to exfoliate every day? Slow down killer, we don’t want to over do it and damage those precious amino acids. Taking your time, going slow, and giving new products 3-4 weeks to really make a difference is key here. Introduce one product at a time, let it work, and if you still aren’t achieving the results you desire move up a level or add another day. This includes physical exfoliation!

So, let’s tie this all back into prepping for your sunless tan… ideally, you’ve been exfoliating for years and your skin is perfect, but we all live in the real world ain’t nobody got time for that. 1-2 weeks out prior to your tan…make time. Dead skin cells=patchy tan and your tan not lasting as long. Exfoliate 3-4 times per week leading up to 48 hours prior to your tan. Once you are in the 24-48-hour area stop exfoliating. Don’t forget to load up on moisturize every day to help your new glowing skin cells thrive, they are thirsty! Also, most importantly fresh skin cells soak up the UV rays of the sun; protect yourself with a high-quality sunscreen and apply daily. Finally, don't try to make up for lost time aggressively exfoliating the night before won't work. If you’re in a bind a light mitt exfoliator is the best way to go, but don't worry we have those for purchase in our salon.

Don’t forget to check our recommended prep care/after care for more info, and our sunscreen/moisturizer blog for recommended post care product recommendations.

Can’t wait to see your glowing skin!