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Tips to Exfoliate at Home Safely 

Exfoliation is done to remove dead skin cells from your skin’s outer layer. While other people claim that using exfoliating scrub can help improve how their skin appears, it’s not for everyone. If exfoliating is not properly done, it could do more danger than good. When you’re planning to do this, make sure that you do it safely so that your skin won’t be damaged or it won’t lead to no acne breakouts or increased redness on your skin.   

2 Main At-Home Exfoliation Methods 

Since each exfoliation type may not be suitable for every skin type, it would be best for you to know your skin type first before you choose an exfoliation method to use. 

For at-home exfoliation, you can choose from the 2 main methods: chemical and mechanical. The method you opt for must be based on your skin type. 

  • Chemical exfoliation utilizes chemicals, such as beta and alpha hydroxy acids, which help dissolve dead skin cells gently. 
  • Mechanical exfoliation is done using a tool—either a sponge, brush, or a scrub—that can help eliminate dead skin cells physically. 

To avoid damaging your skin as you exfoliate, here are the following tips that are highly recommended by dermatologists: 

Be gentle to your skin 

When using a chemical exfoliator or a scrub, gently apply the product using circular, small motions. Do so for approximately 30 seconds, and rinse it off with lukewarm water afterward. If you prefer using a sponge or brush, use light and short strokes. Make sure to avoid exfoliating if you have open wounds or cuts or when you have sunburnt skin. 

Choose an exfoliation method that’s ideal for your skin type 

If you have dry, acne-prone, or sensitive skin, it would be best for you to use a mild chemical exfoliator and a washcloth because mechanical exfoliation could be very irritating for such skin types. If you have thicker, oily skin, you may prefer using mechanical exfoliation or stronger chemical treatments. But, make sure to prevent strong mechanical or even chemical exfoliation once you have a darker skin tone or if you can observe dark spots on your skin due to acne breakouts, bug bites, or after burns. 

Consider your currently used skincare products 

There are some OTC products and medications that could make your skin peel or be more sensitive, such as products that have benzoyl peroxide or retinol or prescription retinoid creams. If you exfoliate as you use such products, take note that they can cause acne breakouts or even worsen your dry skin. 

Follow with moisturizer 

The process of exfoliation can be drying to the skin. Hence, it’s highly recommended to immediately apply moisturizer after exfoliating your skin to keep it hydrated and healthy. 

Choose the perfect schedule for you 

The number of times you need to exfoliate greatly depends on your exfoliation method and your skin type. The more aggressive it is, the less frequent it must be done. Also, avoid over-exfoliating your skin to prevent having irritated and red skin.