I don’t know about you….but regular exfoliation is one of the most-neglected item in my often-neglected skin regime! I mean I’m not very good about even washing my face as often as I should….let alone taking the time to give it a good scrub! But according to health and beauty experts…proper exfoliation is necessary (mandatory even!) to achieve and maintain healthy, glowing skin!
The reason it’s so important is because layers of dead cells dull the surface of your skin. When we exfoliate, the dead cells are sloughed off and new cells are produced to replace them. News cells = healthy glow.
But it’s not just our faces that need exfoliating…there are places all over our epidermis that can benefit from a good scrubbing!
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Regular exfoliation keeps the lips soft, supple and less flaky, which means your lipstick will go on much smoother. But keep in mind, lips are very sensitive and your regular face scrub might be too rough.
You can use a soft toothbrush or washcloth or you can try a homemade lip exfoliant out of aspirin and fine sugar! Crush four aspirin and mix with a teaspoon of sugar, a few drops of jojoba oil (or sweet almond oil) and 1/4 teaspoon of glycerin. The glycerin helps the powdered aspirin and sugar to “stick” to your lips while you scrub them.
It makes sense that if you are exfoliating the skin on your face regularly, you would want to extend it to your neck as well so that the tone of your face and neck match. Since neck skin is also fairly sensitive I would stick with your FACIAL scrub rather than a BODY scrub.
Here’s a trick from 50thavenuesalon.com: get a cute salt or pepper shaker and fill it with sugar. (I use regular granulated sugar, but I’ve heard good things about organic raw sugar too). Put the container of sugar on your bathroom counter or in your shower, wherever you normally wash your face, and simply sprinkle some into the palm of your hand along with whatever you wash your face with.
Based on the number of body scrubs I see pinned on Pinterest, I’d say a lot of you are using them fairly regularly. This is a good thing. If you use sunscreen or other types of lotions regularly, then exfoliation is important so that your pores don’t become clogged by the ingredients. While there are some good commercial body scrubs out there….I think the homemade scrubs are by far the best! (Not to mention the most economical!)
Even if you regularly shave your armpits, they can end up looking dark due to the accumulated residue from perspiration and deodorant or anti-perspirant. Regular exfoliation is necessary to rid the residue and keep the area clean, and may help remove ingrown hair. Once again, since this part of your body is more delicate, use a facial scrub or a loofah instead of your body scrub.
Elbows & Knees
When exfoliating your body, don’t forget to pay special attention to your elbows and knees. Your regular body wash or soap alone just won’t cut it on these more stubborn areas.
Feet & Heels
A much-neglected area. If you get regular pedicures, then you’re probably already getting the exfoliating treatment on your feet. But for those of us who don’t, remember to extend your body scrub to your feet and heels as well. A pumice stone works well on rough heels, but I think a good scrub is SO much nicer!
Hands in general don’t need much exfoliation because we are always washing them. However, dead skin does accumulate around the cuticles. Since I’ve never been one to clip my own cuticles (I would probably sever an artery if I tried!) I prefer to gently push them back and then use my regular body scrub to get rid of any dead skin buildup. Toes cuticles get the same treatment with foot scrub.
Keep in mind that while exfoliation is important, you don’t need to exfoliate every day. After all, the purpose is to slough off dead skin cells and if you have already scrubbed them off there is no point in scrubbing further. Too much exfoliation will obviously damage the healthy cells, so keep it to a routine of about once a week.