Exfoliation is a process by which the dead cells (read skin) are gently cleared from the skin. Sometimes, due to improper care or carelessness, the dirt and the dead cells mix up together and stick to the pores of the skin resulting in clogging of the pores. This can make the skin look dull and spotty.
Sensitive skin: Given the importance of exfoliation, it is of immense importance to clean up the skin; normal or sensitive. Dealing with sensitive skin exfoliation can be a lot more challenging as compared to a normal one. As the name suggests, sensitive skins are very ‘sensitive’ to any type of rubbing, chemicals or vapours. They have a tendency to irate or redden quickly. Hence it is of great importance to use the right technique along with the right cream/scrub/gel to avoid any harm to the skin.
Perfect cleanser: Select a facial cleanser formulated without oils, perfumes, dyes, antibacterial agents, parabens or other preservatives. Look for cleansers made specifically for sensitive skin. Cleansing milks are especially gentle while remaining effective cleansers.
Over-the-counter scrubs: when using granular scrubs or exfoliating cloths, mild pressure is all that’s required. “You want to let the product do the work,” says Kellett. There are tons of choices for body and face containing a vast array of exfoliating ingredients, like oatmeal, cornmeal, sugar, salt, coffee, almonds, and microbeads, along with moisturizing and toning/detoxifying ingredients. Depending on your preferences and budget, you’re sure to find one you like at your local drugstore or department store.
Homemade sloughers: Do it yourself (and save money in the process) by raiding your pantry for natural exfoliants. Make your own scrub by combining skin-friendly scrubbers like those mentioned above with moisturizing and toning/detoxifying ingredients such as yogurt, honey, olive oil, avocado, strawberry, citrus fruits, herbs, and essential oils.
Exfoliate sensitive skin once or twice a week, either with a sponge or a homemade scrub. If your skin responds well to twice-weekly exfoliations, you can try exfoliating more often. If you experience redness, soreness or increased sensitivity, decrease the number of times you exfoliate per week.