Exfoliating is one of the most important players in achieving healthy, radiant skin. However, we all know the saying, "Too much of a good thing is never a good thing". So how do we know when we're over-exfoliating? How often should we exfoliate? What are the different exfoliating products? What are the signs?
People with oily or sweaty skin should exfoliate more often than others. People with matured, flaky or dull skin can benefit from using a chemical exfoliator to remove dead skin cells without over stimulating the cells. Too much pressure on the skin from manual exfoliation can aggravate more sensitive skin types.
How to tell when you're over-doing it? If the skin is raw, red or painful is definitely a sign. Another sign is excessive dryness, redness and irritation bumps over hair follicles. A more confusing sign of skin showing it's being exfoliated too much, is a waxy appearance. This is often times misconstrued as a "radiant glow". In all actuality, the new fresh skin has been shown to the world too soon and has been stripped of natural oils. Another thing to look out for is heightened sensitivity from your usual products or treatments.
Well, what do we do now?!
We calm down. That's right. Calm. It. Down.
LISTEN TO YOUR SKIN! Often times, skin specialists and wax specialists want to drill in the importance of exfoliating because we don't want you to not exfoliate at all. It's an important step to efficient skin care.
HOWEVER, if your skin is irritated, fragile, cracked, raw, overly sensitive, etc., STOP! Stop using exfoliators, foaming cleansers, soaps, retinol products and anything else that may be stripping your skin of natural oils.
START using a gentle cleanser. These are not soap based.
Aloe gel, hydrocortisone cream and Aquaphor are your friends. Only use a thick product like Aquaphor on the raw skin. It creates a barrier to let the skin heal without being further irritated from everyday friction.
You can and should go back to exfoliating slowly. You can start at once a week after everything heals and increase to 2 or 3 times a week depending on how your skin is tolerating.
Important! DO NOT mix manual and chemical exfoliators. Either one or the other!
Okay Belles and Beaus. Be kind to your skin.