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Monday Mantra: Ex-Fo-Li-Ate!

Why? In the process of skin regeneration, skin cells move to the topmost layer of the skin and die off. Their accumulation leads to dull looking skin and clogged pores. Exfoliation helps the natural shedding process, and there are different ways to do that: physical or chemical. Physical exfoliation includes anything from using a wash cloth, brush (manual or electric) to scrubs and microdermabrasion. These physically remove dead skin cells in varying strength. Chemical exfoliation can be done with enzymes (think pineapple, pumpkin, papaya, ...), or Alpha - or Beta-Hydroxy-Acids (think glycolic, lactic, salicylic, ...). These dissolve the glue in between the dead cells, or help dissolve the keratin altogether. These can range from at home masks to professional peels, depending on the ingredient concentration. While the results of exfoliation are well known and proven - hello glow and smoother texture - , we need to be cautious as to which method and strength to apply. Not every skin type and condition is a candidate of any kind of exfoliation. And the stronger the exfoliation, the more important the healing process becomes. A professional esthetician will be best equipped to determine which kind and how much exfoliation is needed to get you to the results you want to achieve.

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