I Over-Exfoliated, Now What?

If your skin feels flaky, raw, parched, taut, or otherwise sensitive-to-the-touch, you have probably over-exfoliated it (Multicultural Beauty). While this certainly can be a nuisance in the short-term, following a few simple tips can prevent this from becoming a permanent or recurring issue. But just what are you supposed to do when you have over-exfoliated your skin?

Stop Exfoliating!


This is fairly obvious, but still worth stating: stop exfoliating! If your skin appears flaky after over-exfoliation, refrain from whipping out your exfoliating buff and scrubbing at those flakes, as this will only exacerbate the issue. It is best to wait until your skin is no longer sensitive and inflamed (about a week) before resuming your exfoliative routine (Self).

Pick the Buff that is Right for You

It is possible that your over-exfoliation was due to either using a buff that was too abrasive or over-zealously using a buff that wasn’t quite abrasive enough, causing you to exert unnecessary pressure on your skin cells. After your skin has recovered, we suggest using one of the ViaBuff Exfoliating Buffs, which can be customized to meet the needs of 10 different skin types. Our buffs are calibrated to the appropriate exfoliative roughness necessary to slough away dead skin cells without damaging your skin. They are cruelty-free, dermatologist-tested, and last for 90 days, which is three times longer than the life of your standard exfoliating puff.



Simplify Your Exfoliative Routine

Check for keratolytic ingredients like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and urea in your daily skincare products. Daily use of these may lead you to unwittingly over-exfoliate your skin. It is best if you limit yourself to using one keratolytic ingredient and use it sparingly (once or twice a week). Also beware of vigorously scrubbing your skin with washcloths or towels after exfoliating, as these further exfoliate the skin and lead to irritation (New Beauty).

Exfoliate According to Your Skin’s Needs, not Popular Opinion

The Internet is riddled with conflicting opinions about how frequently you should exfoliate. Some dermatologists recommend daily exfoliation, whereas others champion exfoliating once a week. While there is no formal consensus about how frequently you should exfoliate, it is generally recommended that those with normal skin exfoliate once or twice a week. Those with dry skin should exfoliate once a week or so. If you have oily skin, you may benefit from daily exfoliation (American Academy of Dermatology).



Bottom Line

By using an assortment of keratolytic ingredients and scrubbing your skin too aggressively, you may inadvertently over-exfoliate your skin.  To remedy over-exfoliated skin, you should refrain from exfoliating until your skin has healed. Make sure to simplify your exfoliative routine by using only one keratolytic ingredient, and select the ViaBuff Exfoliating Buff that is right for you. Finally, consult with your dermatologist to determine how frequently your skin should be exfoliated, as what seems too frequent for some may be too sporadic for others.


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