Skincare 101: Exfoliating

Hi! Welcome to the first in a series on skincare. I'm starting with exfoliating because it's an important part of any skincare routine, and one of the simplest things we can do to improve the overall quality of our skin. It also helps keep our skin looking younger (major plus!) So, let's dive in.

What happens when we don't exfoliate? Our skin is continually creating new skin cells. When we don't exfoliate, the dead cells stay on our skin and we end up layering all of our skincare products, makeup, sunscreen on top of those cells. The result is dull, lifeless, rough skin that looks older, and products that aren't able to perform to their full potential.

What does exfoliating do? Exfoliating removes the dead skin cells from our skin and signals it to regenerate new cells. Exfoliating also allows our other skincare products, makeup, sunscreen to penetrate deeper into the layers of our skin, working more effectively and giving us our money's worth from our products. It is the easiest, most effective way to get immediate results. Exfoliating instantly brightens and clears, smooths and softens skin.

How often should you exfoliate? Minimum once a week, and depending on your skin and the products, 2-3 times. When in our routine should we exfoliate? After cleansing (or with one), before a toner.


Which exfoliants should I use? The answer to this question is up to you! Yay! It varies depending on your skin type, preferences, budget...multiple factors. But here is something to consider: Did you know there are 2 types of exfoliants? Yes, there are physical and chemical exfoliants. I typically do 1 physical and 2 chemical exfoliations per week.

Physical exfoliants are particles that have some grit and are abrasive to the skin: salts, sugars, clays, ground oats, etc. Even a dry brush provides physical exfoliation. These are all great at removing dead cells from your skin and result in improved texture. Your skin will feel noticeably smoother and softer. I frequently use the Bamboo Buff face polish pictured below with an oil cleanser and love it! Every time I use it, I am impressed by how soft and smooth my skin is afterwards. Another huge plus for this product: it can be used with a cleanser so it's not an extra step in your skincare routine!

Chemical exfoliants are acids and enzymes. These are usually found in serums and masks and are often gentler on the skin than physical exfoliants. They result in improved clarity and brightness of the skin. The cool thing about chemical exfoliants is that not only do they remove dead cells, they also loosen and dissolve the bonds between the dead cells and the new, making them more effective than their physical counterparts. A chemical exfoliant I use 2 times weekly is the Overnight Resurfacing Peel. It's gentle, easy to use and effective at smoothing, brightening and resurfacing skin. I have been using this product for several years and love it. It's one of the first Beauty Counter skincare products I started using and I continue to remain a fan.

Sometimes it's advantageous to use the 2 types together to get the full range of exfoliation. My favorite product that does this is Beauty Counter's AHA Reflect Effect mask. The chemical exfoliant component goes to work while the mask sits on your skin, loosening the dead cells. Then the physical component scrubs them away as you work the bamboo particles into your skin during removal. The result? Instantly brighter, smoother, softer skin. It's like an at home facial in a jar. I alternate this product with the bamboo buff face polish weekly. So, one week I'll use the AHA mask, the next will be the face polish.

I hope this has been helpful and you've learned something. If you think your skin looks dull and tired lately, exfoliation might be what's needed to give it a lift.

If you're interested in any of the Beauty Counter exfoliants, I need to share with you some incredible offers happening right now. New clients get 20% off with code CLEANFORALL20. And for a limited time, you will also get a FREE, full size clean deodorant with your purchase. Also, consider adding our $10 Band of Beauty membership to your cart. When you do, you'll get our glow priming serum as free gift, FREE SHIPPING on $75+, and 10% product credit. All of these savings are stackable!!

If you want to use items you most likely already have in your home, ground oats and honey are an excellent option. You can use this combination as a mask and scrub, or just a scrub. Simply mix 1 teaspoon of ground oats with a teaspoon of raw honey. Spread onto skin, let sit for about 10 minutes, then scrub and rinse clean. Instantly brighter, softer skin, naturally!

Questions? Wondering what's best for your skin type? Reach out. I'm here to help. Thanks!