Skincare can seem a bit mundane and routine depending on your age, individual needs and so on - I know when I was younger it was all about the bare minimum and skincare was as exciting as cleaning my teeth, necessary but not terribly interesting. These days I pay a lot more attention, thanks, because as I age I can't be complacent and rely solely on good genes any more!
I'm going to talk about exfoliation as it's the step in my face and body care routine I get most excited about. It's because I can see and feel the results of a good exfoliant straight away and I know that getting rid of those dead skin cells will help all the other skin care products I use to do their job. As I'm well into "middle" age my skin's getting lazy with cell turnover so I need things to help it along! Also - lucky me - I suffer with keratosis pilaris on my upper arms and regular body moisturiser isn't really going to do much to smooth that congested skin.
It's only been in the past 5 years or so that I've been into exfoliating my face. Tsk! Tsk! If only I knew way back when, right?
I've tried different kinds of either chemical exfoliants (I didn't love the intense heating sensation on my face), or granular exfoliants. Currently I'm using La Clinica Gly C Refine Micro Dermabrasion Facial Scrub* for my twice weekly skin smoothing treatment and this superfine granular scrub is enhanced with Glycolic Acid and Vitamin C so it combines both physical and chemical exfoliants in a surprisingly gentle (not scary at all!) but effective way.
You can see the tiny granules in the macro below - the same as are used in microdermabrasion machines:
I stumbled across my favourite way to use the Gly C Refine scrub one day absolutely by accident: I'd been massaging the scrub onto my wet skin for about a minute, when I got distracted for a minute so the scrub just sat on my face for that extra little while and when I rinsed it off I had that truly amazing baby skin feeling *choirboys singing*. I've been following my 'accidental' method ever since of doing a quick, gentle scrub with a small amount of product then pottering around for another minute to allow the Glycolic Acid to finish the job. I'm slightly hooked on this stuff because it does such a good job of liberating my fresh new skin.
I like to exfoliate my body at least twice a week to help keep my keratosis under control and scrub away those pesky and stubborn little goose bumpy bits from the backs of my arms. Natio Wellness Body Scrub is one I keep returning to because it combines sugar which doesn't sting the skin and ground apricot seeds so I can use it on wet skin without all the exfoliant granules dissolving.
The granules thoroughly exfoliate my skin without scratching or irritating and are suspended in a thick, almost stiff moisturising gel so I don't have to worry about the product sliding off my paws before I can scrub my skin - I hate losing product down the drain - and on a superficial, hedonistic, okay me level, I have to say I'm a fan of the almost candied fruity scent.
At one point I mistakenly thought Palmer's Anti-Aging Smoothing Lotion* had been discontinued and I was just a little bit (truthfully more than a little bit) devastated because daily use of this body lotion actually means I don't have to rely on a scrub to keep my skin smooth. The Alpha/Beta Hydroxy Acids act to exfoliate the upper layer of dead skin cells and also penetrate to exfoliate inside and unblock pores which can cause keratosis.
The thick lotion has a fresh unisex scent, is quickly absorbed and still very moisturising as it contains cocoa butter (of course), and that hero of moisurising ingredients, shea butter. Oh yeah, what was the reason I thought this was discontinued? Well...It was repackaged and I couldn't find it for looking! I told you I wasn't getting any younger...
What skincare step are you most passionate about?
(Products marked * were provided for my consideration. All comments and opinions are my own.)