What is exfoliation?
We’ve all heard “exfoliation” bandied about in TV commercials as beautiful women continue to look, well, beautiful. So what is it exactly that exfoliation does?
Skin is an amazing part of our bodies – it serves as a self-healing barrier keeping us healthy and protected. The natural cycle of cell death and reproduction continually rejuvenates our skin throughout our lives. On a day to day basis, skin cells die off, and some remain on the surface of our skin, creating a light barrier that gives skin a dull look. Over time, the buildup of dead skin cells can also begin to block healthy skin from absorbing much needed moisture and nutrients from your skin care products, increasing dryness and irritation (and creating clogged pores!)
To combat dullness and itching, many beauty care experts and dermatologists recommend exfoliating regularly to remove the buildup of dead skin cells. The gentle abrasion of exfoliating cleansers lifts away dead skin cells, exposing the beautiful, healthy skin underneath.
Winter exfoliation – Go forth, exfoliate!
Exfoliation can be especially helpful in winter as cold outside air teams up with dry indoor heat to dry out your skin more than ever. If you have an existing routine, be sure to pair all exfoliation with a moisturizing soap.
Don’t forget to moisturize!
A combination exfoliation/glycerin soap like our Lovely Loofas, or an olive oil based soap will work wonders to keep your skin protected while sloughing off dead cells. Both glycerin and olive oil act to draw moisture from the air to the surface of your skin and helping to keep your skin looking beautiful all day long (the technical term is “humectant”!). For best results, turn down the water temperature from hot to warm and you won’t strip moisture out of your skin cells – just as you’re trying to put it back in!
Homemade scrubs with Epsom salts
If you’re in for the amazing benefits of Epsom salts, and some simple luxury, a homemade scrub is for your shower or bath. Just mix 2 tablespoons of Olive or Coconut oil to 1 tablespoon of Epsom salts, and slather on before or during your shower or bath.
Listen to your skin
As with everything in life, too much of a good thing is simply too much. Everyone’s skin is different, and you may find that you need to space out your exfoliation treatments to avoid overdoing it. Here’s four signs of over-exfoliation to look out for:
- Increased skin sensitivity
- Skins feels tight
- Red, itchy, dry skin
- Increase of acne and irritation
Take the time to notice and listen to your skin’s needs. If you begin to notice any of these symptoms, reduce the number of times you exfoliate during the week and focus instead on pampering your skin with a moisturizing soap, like our colorful glycerin soaps or our indulgent olive oil based soaps. Pair it with your favorite moisturizing lotion to keep skin supple and smooth even during the worst winter days!
**Check out our monthly specials to take advantage of a 25% discount! In February, stock up on our Wild Rose Olive Oil soap and in March go for the delightful Pear Glycerin Bar.