We’ve talked about the importance of exfoliating over and over again! However, most of our articles have focused on the face! Today, we’re putting together the benefits of exfoliating your body to help improve regular skin cell regeneration, relieve dryness, and reduce the appearance of keratosis pilaris.
In case you missed our Exfoliating 101 blog post, we’ll walk you through the top benefits of exfoliating, and then dive into how the skin (and blemishes) on your body differ from your face.
Benefits of exfoliating
The skin on your body is thicker than the skin on your face, and may require more frequent / stronger exfoliation if you struggle with body acne or folliculitis. However, there’s a fine line between proper exfoliation and over-exfoliation. If your skin is more sensitive, you may still want to stick to less frequent exfoliation, or stay away from jagged, larger exfoliating agents like sugar, salt, and coffee.
What does exfoliating do for your body besides keep it nice and soft?
It can help regulate skin cell renewal
Dead skin cells build up on the skin’s surface over time as new skin cells develop underneath and regenerate. As those dead cells sit on your skin’s surface, they trap the new cells underneath, while clogging pores with oil, dirt, and other impurities. When pores are clogged, your oil production can go into overdrive, making your skin oily and further clogging the pores, which can lead to acne and other irritations! This can lead to blemishes like acne, blackheads, and whiteheads…even on your body!
It allows other products to soak in deeper
When dead cells sit on the surface of the skin, they can block toners and moisturizers from properly penetrating the multiple layers of the skin. This can lead to a lack of hydration, which will only cause more dead cells to stay at the surface! Properly exfoliating the skin helps remove those dead cells, allowing your moisturizers to penetrate the skin more deeply, keeping your skin more hydrated and clear.
- Helps cleanse skin
- Can reduce excess oil production
- Improves complexion by removing dead cells on surface
- Allows moisturizers, hydrosols, and toners to soak in deeper
What is body acne, and what makes it different from acne on your face?
Body acne is usually caused by the combination of moisture and friction. When there’s friction between the skin and the fabric you’re wearing, especially in hot or moist climates, the lining of your skin’s pores is broken down. The top layer of skin dies, while sweat and bacteria trapped on the skin’s surface, or in your fabric, over-hydrates the pores. This clogs your skin with excess sebum and dead skin cells, causing inflamed follicles.
How can exfoliating help?
Regular exfoliating is a SUPER important part of preventing and treating body acne and inflamed pores! You want to rid your skin’s surface of those dead skin cells in order to assure proper cell turnover and cleansing. This will prevent from bacteria, sweat, and dirt from getting stuck underneath the skin’s surface.
What is keratosis pilaris, and how can exfoliating help calm it?
Keratosis pilaris is a super common skin condition. Keratosis pilaris appears as tiny bumps on the skin; while it is usually on the back of the arms or thighs, it can appear anywhere!
Keratosis pilaris is not quite acne – although it is clogged pores. It is often caused by dryness leading to dead skin cell buildup on the surface of the skin, therefore clogging the pores. It can therefore be treated somewhat similarly to small pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads on the face!
Regular, GENTLE exfoliation is essential to keeping these bumps at bay. Again, exfoliating helps to remove all of dead skin and impurities that are clogging your pores, causing the keratosis pilaris! While you may be able to use a larger, rougher exfoliating agent on most of your body – like coffee or sugar – you’ll still want to stick to a gentle, finely ground exfoliator for the areas of your body affected by keratosis pilaris. Over-exfoliating your areas affected by keratosis pilaris can result in more inflammation and worsened bumps. Our Sea Moss Exfoliator is a great option for this condition, as it is nourishing, gentle, and extremely fine! While it is our favorite for facial exfoliation, it works just as well on the body.
Here are the main take-aways we hope you got from this article!
- Exfoliating your body is just as important as exfoliating your face
- Exfoliation aids in regeneration of skin cells and is important for preventing folliculitis, body acne, keratosis pilaris, and general clogged pores
- Exfoliation helps your moisturizer sink in better
- The skin on your body is thicker than on the face, which may allow you to use larger exfoliating agents, like coffee, salt, and sugar.
- However, for areas where you have keratosis pilaris or sensitive skin, stick to gentle exfoliators (like those you use on your face).