9:11pm Monday 8th February 2010
By Lisa Mansell
My definitions for these three little words are all different; exfoliating is the general term used for removing dry and dead skin cells from the face or body. A scrub is a product containing a strong gritty ingredient and would mostly be used on the body and a buff is a gentle product used for the face. Of course the product companies have their own ideas and name their products whatever they fancy, so confusing all us poor consumers.
So why should you exfoliate? Your skin naturally sheds dead skin cells which eventually will detach, by exfoliating you’re aiding this process which then has your skin looking brighter, fresher and glowing. It’s also a good idea for men to exfoliate to prevent in-growing hairs where they shave.
Exfoliating benefits all skin types, even sensitive you just need to get the balance right and choose the right product.
Types of exfoliator vary hugely but there are a few main types too be aware of, manual exfoliator such as a scrub or buff, uses a gritty ingredient such as salt, sugar, apricot kernel, sand, jojoba beads or ground nut, which you rub over your face or body to lift the dead skin cells away. You have to be careful not to use anything to harsh or abrasive on your face as it can lead to scratching so your skin feels rough and damaged. You would usually use these once or twice a week.
Chemical exfoliator such as AHA or fruit acids which you leave on the skin like a mask and then wash off, there are varying versions of these to suit all skin types, they sound scary but are really gentle. An exfoliator like this is great for sensitive skin as there is no scrubbing which might irritate. Another ingredient to look out for is papain, which is derived from pineapples and gently melts away dead skin cells. Most of the chemical exfoliators can also be used once or twice a week.
Microfoliants are quite a new invention, they are so gentle you can use them every day and are a good option if you like to wash your face rather than cleanse and tone. These are getting better and better and there are now a good selection available. I think these are great for men and also someone with an oily skin; although I’m sure there is one for lots of skin types.
If you’re using an exfoliator regularly and your still finding your skin needs some help then you could try a professional treatment like Microdermabrasion, this is ideal for all skin types and works wonders on pigmentation, acne and acne scarring uneven skin tone and also fine lines and wrinkles. Microdermabrasion is intense exfoliation using a machine; ultra fine crystals strike the skin to remove its dead outer layer whilst a vacuum sweeps up the debris and boosts the circulation. You can have one treatment or opt for a course; your therapist will help you decide. You can buy home Microdermabrasion kits, they tend to be pricey and I personally think they are not as good as having the treatment.
So if your suffering with some dry patches or are getting lots of blackheads, then introduce an exfoliator into your skin care routine.
© Copyright 2001-2013 Newsquest Media Group