Every 28 days skin renews itself leaving your skin with a fresh layer of baby cells. As we get older this shedding process, called desquamation, slows down leaving us with fine lines, dry areas and an uneven skin texture. Make-up can really accentuate this dilemma.
Exfoliation stimulates new cell growth by removing the cells your body is no longer shedding. It helps your body with the desquamation process by stripping the dead epidermal cells on the outer surface of your skin and exposing a fresher layer of living cells. It takes a few days for a noticeable amount of dead cells to accumulate. It is best to exfoliate once or twice a week. You don’t want to irritate your skin or remove healthy living cells by doing it daily.
Benefits of Exfoliation
- Removes the top layer of dead cells, so the cells turn over at a faster rate revealing softer, smoother skin
- Improves the texture of your skin
- Helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles
- Un-clogs pores
- Makes your skin look healthier, fresher and more radiant
- Gives your skin a good base to absorb moisturizers and other skin products
- Boosts your circulation from the friction
Exfoliation can benefit the skin on your face, around your lips, neck, elbows, knees and feet. Lately I have noticed the skin on my heels starting to crack and the skin on my elbows seems thicker. This dilemma has improved as a result of exfoliating. For those of you who love self-tanning, exfoliation will be your new best friend. It is a great technique to blend around the feet, elbows and knees.
There are three different exfoliating methods.
Manual exfoliation is moved across your skin’s surface using your fingers or buff puff. You are removing the dead cells by scraping off the top surface with physical friction. Many manufacturers use natural products such as seeds, apricot pits, or crushed oyster shells as the ingredient that causing friction. Some products use round beads or poly spheres that can be easier on the skin.
Chemical exfoliates are a topical bio engineered ingredient that can dissolve the glue like substance that holds the dead cells together. Most chemical exfoliates use either Alpha Hydroxy Acids or Beta Hydroxy Acids. This type of exfoliation is applied to the skin then rinsed off. You do not “scrub” to enjoy the benefits. The “chemical” does the work.
Enzymes work by dissolving the dead tissue. The enzymes are molecules that catalyze chemical reactions of other substances. The product is applied then washed off. You do not manually “scrub” your skin. The enzyme does the work for you.
You have three choices: manually scrub off the dead cells, dissolve the glue like substance that holds the dead cells together with chemicals or dissolve the dead tissue with enzymes. They all work equally well.
I was absolutely amazed at the results of such an inexpensive and simple process. Exfoliation is my new anti-aging weapon.