The answer to this often frustrating question is in the simple but most underrated skincare method, Exfoliation.
Exfoliation is the shedding of the topmost layer of skin, which comprises of dead, rough and flaky cells. It is also known as the cell turnover rate. When we are young, the cell turnover rate is high which explains the smooth and supple skin of babies. As we grow older, the cell turnover rate slows down.
A decreased cell turnover rate causes dull and rough skin, ageing and a tendency to retain hyper-pigmentation like sunspots or age spots. It also doesn’t allow for other skincare products to work efficiently since the dead skin layer sitting on top.
Acne prone skin often has an impaired cell turnover rate. The un-shed dead cells form a thick layer and clog pores, trapping the dirt, bacteria and sebum causing blackheads and acne.
And this is why Exfoliation is the cornerstone of any good skincare practice. It reveals healthy fresh skin from underneath and allows the other skincare products to and work efficiently.
5 Benefits of exfoliation
- Reduces skin congestion and prevents breakouts
- Gets rid of whiteheads and blackheads
- Fades hyper-pigmentation and reduces superficial scarring
- Fights signs of ageing like dullness and wrinkles
- Increases efficacy of other skincare products like moisturizers, serums, creams etc.
Exfoliation like any other skincare step should be gently and slowly introduced into the skincare regime. You can start with a gentle scrub once a week for the initial 2-3 weeks and increase the frequency.
It is also important to not over exfoliate your skin or use harsh scrubs that lead to irritation and redness. Harsh exfoliating processes or products can also stimulate the skin to over produce sebum.
Types of exfoliation processes
Chemical exfoliation uses chemicals that loosen or dissolve the bonds present between the dead skin cells. They are strong and should be ideally prescribed by a dermatologist. Examples are Mandelic Acid, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA), Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHA), Vitamin A derivatives like retinols etc.
Mechanical exfoliation is physically shearing off dead cells from the surface of the skin. Examples are washcloths, scrubs, derma procedures like microdermabrasion and micro-planing etc.
Scrubs are the most popular and common method of exfoliation.
What to look for in a scrub
Scrub particles should be round and smooth. Irregular sized particles like in walnut scrubs or seed scrubs can be too abrading. They might cause micro-abrasions and microscopic tears of the skin leading to redness and inflammation.
Particles should be fine, so as to gently remove the surface cells only and not erode the deeper layers of the skin. The scrub should be free of skin irritants and harsh chemicals. A ‘whipped cream’ like texture that supports the scrub particles and simultaneously soothes the skin is ideal.
The Pilgrim Volcanic Lava Ash Face Scrub has extra fine particles and a luxurious ‘pillowy’ texture. Free of any toxic chemicals, it is gentle on the skin and leaves it bright, smooth and glowing.
Duration and technique to Apply Skincare Products
Take a small amount and apply on the skin. Using only fingertips gently massage using small circular strokes for One minute. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and follow up with a moisturizer.
A Scrub should be only applied to cleansed skin. If you scrub without cleansing first it will only draw out dirt and surface impurities as opposed to the dead skin cells.
Exfoliation can lead to temporary redness due to increased blood flow. Hence, exfoliation happens a day prior to any important event to allow the redness to settle and the glow to come in.
Turn your skincare game around and start exfoliating!
Note: People currently on anti acne medication should get medical advice before beginning any exfoliating treatment
Volcanic Lava Ash Face Scrub with Yugdugu & White Lotus
The volcanic lava ash, yugdugu and white lotus work synergistically to reduce pimentation, discolorations, fine lines, sun tan and imroves the skins’ elasticity over time . It gently foams and sloughs off the dead skin cells, superficial blackheads and whiteheads to reveal the softest skin, which feels so supple that its difficult to keep hands off it.