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Body Exfoliation:  The Science Behind The Glow 

by Richard Maher

Why Body Exfoliation is Important for Healthy Skin and a Glow 

Why is Body Exfoliation Important?

Skin is the site of communication between a body and the rest of the world. It’s a person’s first line of defense and our first impression by sending numerous subliminal messages that act as a major barometer of bodily health. As we age, exfoliation – the removal of dead skin from the body’s surface by mechanical or chemical means – becomes increasingly important as the body’s natural cellular turnover slows down. Helping our body slough off dead skin cells to favorable rates greatly helps maintain our skin’s overall appearance and condition.  If you need advice on keeping the skin’s overall appearance and condition after you exfoliate this spring, here’s The Lipgloss + Aftershave Ultimate Skin Care Guide.

How Often Should You Do Body Exfoliation?

Average body exfoliation recommendations are similar to the face with standards set at 2 to 3 times per week. Consistency of body exfoliation can vary depending on many factors including season, sensitivity, and skin type. Dry, sensitive, and acne-prone skin can all benefit from different timelines, so be sure keep an open dialogue and be open to protocol changes to optimize exfoliation programs.

What Is The Best Body Exfoliation Method?

Best methods can vary based on experience level and the state of the skin. Starting out can be as straightforward as using a clean washcloth or buffing pad while you shower. Some post shower products can incorporate chemical exfoliants like lactic/glycolic acid or gentler enzymes as an alternative. Depending on formula, some chemical exfoliants are mild enough to become a part of a daily routine. Beginners can lighten the intensity by applying products before drying off. For tougher, heartier skin, chemical and physical exfoliation can be combined.

Q: Is Dry Brushing The Same As Body Exfoliation?

A: I love incorporating this in my personal home care! While dry brushing (“garshana” in Ayurveda) can superficially remove dead skin cells, there is so much more to this traditional practice than its minor exfoliating potential. The process shares similar characteristics to many effleurage and frictions techniques from Russian sports massage. When keeping speed, rhythm, and pressure constant, the movements can have a sedative quality for your central nervous system, stimulate your lymph system, and increase local circulation greatly contributing to your body’s overall health and wellness.”

Richard Maher

Body Exfoliation + Self Tanners

With the rise of skin cancer awareness, there are more and more self taners and spray tanning options than ever before.

But we suggest caution…..

Should You Do Body Exfoliation Before Self-Tanner?

“Should” feels inadequate. Exfoliation is essential for all forms of professional or self-tanning. Liken the process to painting a wall with an uneven surface. The thick layers of dead keratin that makes up the top layer of our skin is always shedding. Exfoliating prior will remove the topmost cells with the weakest bonds creating an even application with a natural, longer-lasting finish. Prime time for the pre-tanning scrub down is the night before.

 

Body Exofoliation + Waxing

Waxing is for everyone – men and women.  Folks get waxed from head to to and from stem to stern.  Do you need body exfoliation on the stem or the stern if you wax?

Is Body Exfoliation Important After Waxing?

No matter the age, after care for waxing universally includes some form of exfoliation. Hair functions as a delivery mechanism for your skin’s helpful oils; removal of this process opens susceptibility to plugs in the hair follicle increasing the likelihood of ingrown hairs and razor bumps (pseudofolliculitis). Exfoliation acts as a preventative measure so the follicles are less susceptible to plugs created by dead skin cells post service. Standard practice is to exfoliate 2-3 days after service but can change depending on the recommendations set by wax or sugar gurus.

Should you moisturize after body exfoliation?

Yes! Skin is an extremely intricate system. Regimens with more than one step help respect the complexities and processes. Exfoliation alone can create a certain level of vulnerability comparable to letting down emotional walls in a relationship. Using moisturizing and skin positive body products will only help to expedite the results from body exfoliation while keeping the skin in proper condition. Treating the body with the same care as the face will be the foundation to holistic balance and wellness.  Here are a list of product reviews that you can use you find a body moisturizer that you’ll love.

Guest Blogger – Richard Maher

Richard Edward Maher is an award-winning massage therapist and esthetician with near 15 years of expertise in beauty, wellness, and education. Currently residing in Orange County, California, he serves as LightStim’s National Educator, assisting in the formation of their advanced curriculum and supplementary programs. Backed by hands-on knowledge in diverse disciplines including skin care, anatomy, and creative modality integrations, Richard is driven by a passion for creative, solution-based training with a holistic approach. This drive shines through in the heartfelt delivery of his seminars. 

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