Your skin cells should turn over every 28 days, but this process can be hampered by a number of factors: hormone fluctuations, sebum production, sun exposure, vitamin deficiencies, and aging. That is why many of us may need exfoliation from time to time. If your skin is oily and plugged, you may need exfoliation regularly. In contrast, if your skin is looking a little dull or has hyperpigmentation, you can bring back its radiance with gentle exfoliation. Watch the video below to find out how to exfoliate safely from home, according to Dr. Macrene.
Chemical vs. Mechanical
There are two main types of exfoliation: chemical and mechanical. Chemical exfoliations use fruit enzymes or acids like glycolic acid (derived from sugar) and lactic acid (derived from milk). Mechanical exfoliations use cleansing devices, brushes and razors (dermaplaning) to shed dead cells off the skin. Because people tend to be over aggressive when using mechanical tools, chemical exfoliators are always a better option, but if your skin has a history of irritations and allergies from cleansers and lotions, mechanical exfoliator is the way to go.
Gentle Exfoliator For Sensitive or Dry Skin
Cleanse your skin fully and do mild exfoliation. Because it’s easy to over-exfoliate at home, Dr. Macrene recommends exfoliation as an option for people with oily skin, large pores, and wrinkles. When treating patients with dry or sensitive skin, Dr. Macrene prefers chemical exfoliators like citric acid in the High Performance Cleanser. “Citric acid is a relatively weak alpha hydroxy acid,” says Dr. Macrene. “It does not peel the skin unless used at higher concentrations or long exposure times. The High Performance Cleanser is formulated with citric acid and rich vitamins, it resurfaces and cleanses gently without drying out the skin.
Strong Exfoliator For Oily Skin
Alpha hydroxy acids — typically glycolic and lactic — are stronger exfoliants. “Lactic acid is great for oily, sensitive skin and has good outcomes treating oiliness and acne in more deeply pigmented skin types,” says Dr. Macrene.
To exfoliate the body, especially the neck and décolletage, Dr. Macrene recommends gentle exfoliation with the High Performance Cleanser. Or for a more robust peel, trying glycolic acid. "Glycolic acid is successful in peeling off and lightening brown spots. You want to use an anti-aging arsenal including an amino acid derivative such as glucosamine, which can be found in the High Performance Neck and Décolletage Treatment."
Don't over-exfoliate! "Overly exfoliated skin atrophies like parchment paper and can become thin and ashen,” says Dr. Macrene. "If you’re using strong at-home acid peels, once a week is likely enough."