Have you ever wondered about your epidermis?
Of course, you have. Okay, maybe not. Even so, it’s there, working tirelessly for you every day and constantly renewing YOU into a better version of yourself. Well, a better version of your skin.
Your epidermis is the outermost layer of you. Consisting of 6 wafer-thin layers, you can see it, feel it, and it completely renews itself every 28 days or so, but as we all get older, that renewal rate slows down to about 45 days or longer.
With this in mind, it does make sense to keep things turning over efficiently, yet so many of us get this part of our skincare routine wrong. It is understandable when so much of what we read and hear tells us we are doing it right. It is true exfoliation is the key to a beautiful, renewed epidermis. But as they say, it’s not what you do but how you do it.
Why are we getting this so wrong?
Did you ever have one of those moments when you felt you were the only one singing from the treetops about something you knew to be true? So much so you even started to doubt yourself.
Yes, we’ve all had those moments, I certainly have (almost daily), and if you have, then you will understand my frustration with every article, blog post or social media blurb extolling the virtues of scrubs as a means of exfoliation!
These well-meaning products are an unnecessary addition to your skincare routine. I know, I know. You love using them, and It’s true, you must get rid of all that dead skin. Sure, but not with a scratchy, abrasive scrub often consisting of tiny micro-beads or other crushed-up seeds or kernels. Not only are all those micro-beads ending up in our beautiful rivers, streams and oceans, but these physical exfoliants (scrubs) are scratching the bejingo’s out of your skin. If you want an even more detailed version of what I think, you can go here.
But just for a moment, think of yourself as the very proud owner of a newly acquired and stunning handbag (stay with me, I have a point to make), the most beautiful luxury item you’ve ever dreamed of, perhaps a Kelly Bag by Hermes, or something from Prada, Burberry or Louis Vuitton. Whomever you desire. Now, do you imagine for one moment hacking at your newly acquired handbag with anything remotely abrasive? No? Me neither. So why would you do it to your precious skin?
A serum or cream without abrasive particles; the kind that contains alpha hydroxy and beta hydroxy acids are the best way to exfoliate your skin. You’ll dissolve the dead skin cells on the surface of your epidermis without damaging the skin’s delicate barrier function.
Consider this. Liquid epidermal exfoliants, which contain Alpha Hydroxy and Beta Hydroxy acids in a serum or lotion formulation, are best for the exfoliation of your skin. They will dissolve your dead skin cells sitting on the surface of your epidermis while at the same time stimulating enzyme reactions which trigger an increase in cell turnover. How good is that!
If you do this one thing and you do it well, then you will have much better skin, and yes, perhaps that does mean a better version of you or at least a version of you that glows with luminosity.
But if I’m so right, then why do so many people bang on about scrubs?
That’s a fine question, and I can only imagine it has something to do with creating and selling a product because everyone keeps asking for it. It’s guaranteed to sell, and who will argue with that? It’s one of those weird things; everyone says it’s true, so it must be. Right? Well, actually, no. I’m at a loss, bordering on despair (Okay, that’s a bit drastic, but I am frustrated).
Helpful things you should know.
- Start slowly (once a week) and allow your skin to develop tolerance to the product.
- Exfoliaton is just a nudge, so new cells push up through the epidermis to form the protective layer.
- The type exfoliation will depend on what you’re trying to treat. AHA’s a best for dry or dehydrated skin, while BHA’s are best for oily, clogged and blemished skin.
- Exfoliants can be in the form of a serum, cream, toner or mask treatment.
- Initially they may tingle or sting the skin, be sparing in your application. Less is more.
- Most good cosmeceutical brands will offer gentle exfoliating products without abrasive granules.
Epidermal exfoliation at its best.
I’ve chosen a few of my favourites, shown below. They all do the job beautifully. They all have the right active ingredients to gently exfoliate without harming your skin. Choose any of these based on your skin concerns, and you’ll be well on your way to a renewed you.
How about you? Hooked on scrubs? Or have you found the perfect liquid or cream exfoliant? Shoot me an email if you have questions, and if you like this post, I’d love you to share my skin tips with your friends on your favourite social media channel.
See you next time,