Are chemical exfoliators as scary as they sound?
2018 marked the start of new beauty discoveries.
Our eyes and minds were opened to the possibilities of endless skincare solutions, especially those that sounded a little off beat and interesting.
So as per our Beauty Resolutions for the upcoming year, we’re continuing our investigations into the world of beauty.
Join us on the journey to get the scoop on the trends, the pro’s, the con’s and whether or not they’re worth adding to our processes.
This week we’re investigating chemical exfoliators, a product which although doesn’t sound like it is for the faint-hearted, or perhaps the sensitive skinned amongst us is a lot friendlier in reality.
What Are Chemical Exfoliators?
Chemical or any acid-based exfoliants are products containing active ingredients, like BHA (beta-hydroxy acid), AHA (alpha-hydroxy acid) or other enzymes.
Most products advertising clearer skin or spot busting ingredients will contain one of these.
They work by dissolving the connection between skin cells, which simply means skin can shed faster.
Exfoliating removes the build up on the skin which means skin is a lot smoother and luminous.
Most chemical exfoliators are quite watery which helps them to penetrate deep into pores to clean them and get rid of any trapped dead skin cells, which most scrub style exfoliators can’t do.
Will They Irritate Sensitive Skin?
Surprisingly, chemical exfoliators are a lot better than the regular alternative as they’re less abrasive to our skin.
So even those with sensitive skin will be able to use them.
However, anyone with underlying skin concerns such as eczema or dermatitis should stay clear of chemical exfoliants, unless given the all clear by a doctor, as they may further any skin issues.
How To Use Them
When starting to use the products, start by only using one to three times a week to allow the skin to re-adjust, then slowly increase the frequency.
Add these exfoliators to the beauty routine after cleansing. They can replace toners as they do the same job, if not better.
Note that there may be a tingling sensation at first, but this is normal, it’s just a sign it’s doing its job.
There are also chemical exfoliating masks, designed to be left on. These sink into the skin, work their action and are rinsed away.
Keep a close eye on the time recommended to leave these on as they can be a little stronger and if left on for too long, may cause irritation.
Exfoliants make our skin a little more sensitive in the sun too, so make sure to apply plenty of SPF before stepping into the sunshine.
Now we’ve all got the scoop, these products are where to start.
Dr Dennis Gross Skincare’s Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength Daily Peel
These are one of the easiest products to use.
The clever little pads are pre-soaked to glide onto the skin and work miracles.
Massage the face with Step 1 for two minutes and follow with Step 2.
Indie Lee’s Gentle Daily Peel
In a similar vein are these by Indie Lee.
Formulated with natural hydroxy acids, these help to optimize skin clarity and tone.
Estee Lauder’s Perfectionist Pro Instant Resurfacing Peel
Estee Lauder is a VA favourite and this Resurfacing Peel does not disappoint.
It promises to leave the skin feeling baby soft and reduce without irritation.
The Ordinary’s AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
There’s a reason why this cheap yet cheerful product is at the top of beauty editors lists. Its clever formula is extremely powerful and really packs a punch.
The consistency a liquid looking a little blood-like, but apply all over the face, leave for no longer than ten minutes, and rinse away.
A fun and cheap way to get into chemical exfoliating.
Lixir Skin’s Night Switch BHA
Finally is a serum, which although aimed at ‘problem skin’, targets an abundance of skin concerns such as pores, fine lines and plumpness.
Chemical exfoliators suddenly don’t seem quite so scary.
It’s a step I definitely won’t be missing out on anymore.
Beauty Detective: Taking The Fear Out Of Chemical Exfoliation
*this feature contains affiliate links
image, stock imagery