Another common mistake I see in my treatment room is regarding the misuse of exfoliants.
The intention of exfoliants are to slough off the top layer of dead skin to increase the cell renewal rate so they will replace with fresh cells. The top layer has a very important purpose as our body's protective barrier layer. It protects us from the damaging effects of the sun, pollutants, microbial attacks and dehydration.
Generally speaking, if we do not exfoliate, our skin naturally sloughs off at a rate of one day per each year of life. Ex: I am 42 years old. If I didn't exfoliate, my skin would naturally slough off every 42 days. But, that is 42 days of being exposed to free radical damage from the sun, pollutants in the air and elasticity being strained. Lack of exfoliating is a large cause of premature aging including age/sun spots, unsightly expression lines, and a breakdown of elasticity.
On the other hand, if we do not allow our skin enough time to renew before exfoliating again, we will create an equally bad situation for our skin health and barrier function. Our skin may become dry, inflamed, irritated, sun sensitive and even over-produce oil to fight the dryness itself. We will be at risk of irreversible hypopigmentation (white-pigmentless spots), loss of elasticity, sun damage including cancer, and dermatitis.
A good rule of thumb is to limit exfoliation to once per week. Since oily skin type people have a thicker epidermis, their licensed esthetician may find it acceptable to prescribe an at-home regime to include exfoliation two times each week. For dermatologist diagnosed rosacea clients, their licensed esthetician may prescribe exfoliation no more than once every two weeks.
When proper exfoliation is included in your at-home regime, your skin will have an improved tone and texture, strengthened barrier function, less unsightly expression lines and age/sun spots. You will have an overall improved skin health, which will also reflect in other areas of your life.
Ask your licensed esthetician about a skin type appropriate exfoliant to include in your at-home regime, or schedule a treatment with me today.