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Exfoliation: 5 Common Mistakes to Avoid in 2019

If you are looking for the best way to achieve beautiful, smooth, soft and fresh looking skin, then exfoliation is the way to go. Exfoliation can be described as the process that involves sloughing off dead cells from the surface of the skin.

When dead skin cells accumulate on the skin surface, they can clog pores and cause a blockage. Over time, this blockage causes the skin to appear dull but in some instances, dark spots appear. Skin flaking has many benefits for your skin. For starters, it helps you get rid of dirt and dead skin cells so you can enjoy a natural glow and a smooth, soft skin.

When done right, exfoliation is supposed to give you flawless skin. However, doing it incorrectly can consequently irritate your skin.

Chances are high that you are making one or most of these common skin care mistakes. Unknowingly or otherwise.

What next?

If you are not very sure whether you are doing everything right or whether you are following the right procedure, you came to the right place. We aim to share our knowledge with you on this forgotten art. Luckily, you can improve your skills by learning the top blunders you could be committing in your exfoliation routine.

In return, you’ll get to understand how and when to improve.

Below are the Basic Skin Exfoliating Errors You Could Be Making

#1. Exfoliating too harshly

Whether you’re using your hand or a rotating brush to exfoliate, you’re probably applying excess pressure. Pressing harder will not give you a deeper exfoliation. On the contrary, it can actually do real damage to your skin. When you’re too rough with a scrub or brush, you can scour the top layers of your skin. This will cause the blood vessels under the skin to break. It is recommended to apply all scrubs with a tender touch using mild pressure to avoid damage. You can simply use your fingertips or gentle cloth. If you are looking for deeper exfoliation? Then massage (gently) for longer, but not quicker and harder. If you choose to consider more intensive treatments like microdermabrasion, do so with a licensed professional. If you experience a breakout, look for a chemical exfoliator. This is because a scrub has been known to spread bacteria or worsen the breakout. When you feel you simply can’t resist a hard scrub, get rid of the temptation by switching to an enzymatic or acidic exfoliator. These two remove dead skin cells without the need to scrub physically.

#2. Using Harsh Exfoliators

Of the most misused products in skin care, scrubs have to be at the very top. The confusion lies in knowing how hard you should scrub, how often and what type of exfoliator to use. These are undoubtedly the most asked questions between friends, family and in most cases, without the advice of a certified professional. Many people make the mistake of thinking that scrubs work the same as the gritty products of yesteryears. What many people often forget is that exfoliation works better with other skin care products in a well-planned routine.

Another burning topic with dermatologists and skin care professionals is that of rotating brushes in exfoliation. The key to getting good results with a rotating brush is to let it work on its own. Adding a scrub makes it excessive and you are faced with the same skin problems we discussed above. From inflammation, itching, dryness, redness and hyperpigmentation.

#3. Over-exfoliating or Exfoliating Less

As we age, the skin’s ability to shed off dead skin cells decreases. Environmental damage can also play a part in this deterioration. When these dead skin cells accumulate, they can clog up your pores. This, in turn, causes unwanted skin conditions like acne and other blemishes. Exfoliation helps get rid of these dead skin cells allowing your skin to breathe. Ironically, too much of a good thing can turn against you and be bad for you. Different people have different skin types. For many, exfoliating daily is exfoliating too much. Scrubbing your skin too often means you are not giving it sufficient time to recover.

This excessiveness may cause a stinging feeling while it robs the skin of its lipid barrier and causes dryness. Chronic inflammation may also occur causing your skin to age faster. For many skin types, exfoliating 2-3 times a week should be enough. In that case, you are flexible to switch up some of your products, say a new peel once a week. The key to how many times you should exfoliate lies with you listening to your skin. Your skin will be the first to tell you whether you are exfoliating too much or too little.

*Important tip: Always make sure to remove makeup before you start your exfoliation. This helps you avoid over-exfoliating.

#4. Not Evolving with the Times

Your skin changes in so many ways as you age and you go through different seasons. As such, your routine should evolve with you. Of course, every skin type is different, so it’s no rocket science that everyone should choose an exfoliator that works best for them. A product that served you well into the winter might not be ideal for summer. When this happens, do not be afraid to switch up your options. For instance, a physical exfoliator may be great for cold and dry months but hot weather calls for a chemical exfoliator with multi-fruit acids and enzymes for that extra glow. The under eye area is a commonly overlooked area during exfoliation and for good reason. Due to the delicate nature of the skin under the eye, exfoliators are not so popular there. If you need to get rid of fine lines and wrinkles, use specialized eye creams and serums or stick to scrub-free exfoliants with a good dose of vitamin A in them.

The Golden Body Butter & Salt Scrub Kit from Gold Elements is designed for a luxurious pampering body treatment.

This 24-karat gold infused salt scrub and body butter is readily available as a set. It allows you to scrub your body and moisturize it too, for fresh, vibrant skin.

If you’re looking for a two-step body care regimen that will leave your skin baby smooth, then look no further. This set is the ultimate in body skin care with a combination that leaves you feeling fresher than ever.

#5. Not Applying Moisturizer or Sunscreen Afterwards

The job of exfoliators is to remove the outermost layers of the skin dead cells. After a session of scrubbing, the skin is vulnerable to environmental damage through sun and exposure to pollution. Applying sunscreen is the most important step at this point. SPF helps fend off visible signs of aging by protecting the skin against harmful UV rays from the sun. You should apply sunscreen (SPF 30+) every morning but even more important after exfoliating. SPF after exfoliating helps protect newer cells with UV filters and the right antioxidants. For best results, apply your favorite quality moisturizer for hydration and security just a step before sunscreen.


Exfoliation is one of the healthiest skincare procedures you can do for your skin and body. Exfoliating also helps other products like moisturizers and serums to be more efficient.

The most important thing is to remember to listen to what your own skin is telling you. When you are able to do that, the perfect exfoliating routine and the right products will be waiting for you!


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