Exfoliation is a process which includes removal of old and dead skin cells from its surface. Once these cells are eliminated the skin may blossom and regenerate. The final effects of skin exfoliation are smoother and fresh looking skin. Skin exfoliation is together with skin cleansing, toning and moisturizing essential part of routine skin care.
Types of Skin Exfoliation
There are basically two types of skin exfoliation, mechanical exfoliation and chemical exfoliation.
In mechanical exfoliation old and dead skin cells are removed by rubbing the surface of the skin with some sort of an abrasive. These abrasives contain specific compounds which efficiently scrub the surface of the skin. Microfiber cloths, adhesive exfoliation sheets, micro-bead facial scrubs, sugar or salt crystals and pumice are only some of many mechanical exfoliants. Pumice is, for example, an excellent means of exfoliation of the skin of the feet. It is also essential to mention microdermoabrasion, one more method of mechanical skin exfoliation.
Chemical exfoliation includes specific products capable of loosening glue-like substances that bind skin cells. One example of a chemical peel is a facial peel. It is recommended to consult a well experienced specialist and never use too aggressive chemical peels, particularly if one's skin is way too sensitive.
The Importance of Exfoliation
Human skin continuously generates new skin cells. These cells are sent to the very surface of the skin and they eventually die. The role of such cells is to protect underlying layers of the skin from all harmful effects of the environment as well as penetration of many different infective agents and organisms. The superficial layer of the skin constantly sloughs off, this way making place for younger cells. However, superficial skin cells may accumulate (old and dead cells may start to pile up). Such skin becomes dry, rough and dull. Accumulation of dead skin cells predominantly affects elderly people although it is also possible among younger individuals. Under such circumstances skin exfoliation maintains smooth and young appearance of the skin.
Facial and Body Exfoliation
People must pay close attention when it comes to facial exfoliation. It may be easy to over exfoliate, especially if the skin is too sensitive. It is not recommended to exfoliate facial skin during summer and in very sunny climates. Furthermore, body scrubs must be never used on the face. And finally, people who have had a peel recently should avoid waxing of the treated area for certain period of time. This prevents damage to the superficial layer of the skin. As for the body, it is good to perform scrubbing once or twice a week.