6 common body scrubbing mistakes you're making
...and how to, you know, not do them
Exfoliation is one of those things that should definitely be done regularly if you wanna even have a chance of achieving smooth, fresh, baby-butt lookin' skin, but are you doing it the right way?
Exfoliating at least 2-3 times a week is important in order to get rid of those nasty dead skin cells that are having too much fun on your skin and don't want to leave, but it's easy to get lulled into thinking that you can just rub on a scrub and call it a day.
First up, exfoliating is not a 'one size fits all' type of situation. Based on your skin type, there are different kind of scrubs you should be using, whether they're fine or coarse. If you wanna find options for your skin type, check out our blog: using the right body scrub for your skin type.
There are ways in which you can maximise the exfoliating process that most of us don't know about, and tbh, it could make all the difference. Here's our quick guide to exfoliating, and what you should and shouldn't be doing.
1. Don't scrub your heart out
Usually I'd be the first person to tell you to give something everything you got but when it comes to exfoliating, you definitely wanna take a less is more approach.
While it can feel so satisfying to scrub your body hard, you might actually be doing more harm than good. Vigorously scrubbing your body as if you're trying to rid it of its skin can cause inflammation and can worsen any skin conditions you might be suffering from like acne, roseaca and eczema.
You also don't need to be scrubbing every day. This can also worsen any skin conditions you may have or make your skin extra sensitive, and while we love a sensitive sister, she doesn't need to come out if we can avoid it.
2. Please don't eat me
I know that some body scrubs smell deliciously good and you might not have had time to eat before or after smashing out your 6am crossfit class but you can't eat your body scrub. An early morning trip to to the emergency room just ain't it.
This is honestly a no brainer, but who knows these days. While all of our products are plant-based, there are still some ingredients who strictly belong on the outside of your body, not inside it.
Like, it's tempting, we get it. But no.
For now, you're just gonna have to scrub your body whilst being enveloped in the citrusy scent of lemon, or the spicy scent of mint and hope that your significant other has had time to make your go-to coffee to-go. Fingers crossed for you.
3. Not the face
While the face technically is a part of your body, you should try to avoid using a harsh exfoliant on it, as your face skin is softer and more sensitive than the skin on the rest of your body. This means we need to look after it, speak in soothing tones to it and possibly tuck it into bed at night.
In short, a body scrub should only be used on your body as there's a chance it's been formulated differently to a scrub that's purely used for the face. A lot of body scrubs have bigger grains or harsher ingredients that won't get along with the skin on your face.
4. Look after your scrub properly
It can be easy to forget to treat your body scrub the way it deserves to be treated. Perhaps you've just left it in the shower? Or maybe you don't it even close it after you've finished with it? Whatever the case may be, make sure you're looking out for your fave skin pal.
While your body scrub might l.o.v.e it when you get wet, they generally work best when they're dry and when there's no moisture in the bag.
A lot of scrubs use all natural ingredients and these can start to go off, or even go mouldy, if they're exposed to water for an extended period of time.
Make sure you're properly sealing your scrub after you're finished with it and keeping it away from your shower head, so it won't accidentally fall over or be knocked about by the force of the water.
5. Let it soak in
There's literally no point in exfoliating your skin if you're only going to leave it on for 2.3 seconds before washing it off.
Once your skin is nice and warm, you can start applying your chosen scrub but the key is to let it sit and soak a while, roughly for 3-5 minutes. This gives the ingredients a chance to absorb into your skin through your hair follicles.
Now, 3-5 minutes may seem like a long time but it's really only the length of your favourite song so why not sing it out and dance epically? After all, no one can see you. Or if you wanna be more practical about it, take this opportunity to condition your hair or brush your teeth.
Once the time's up, wash it off and go about your merry shower.
6. Don't forget to moisturise
If you think your work stops after you've finished exfoliating then you're wrong, you're only halfway there.
What you do after you get out of the shower makes a huge difference too. Now that you've scrubbed away the dead skin cells and other dirt or grime that's been making a home out of your skin, you need to remember to re-hydrate your skin.
Being scrubbed for the better part of a minute is hard work and your skin is definitely thirsty. The act of exfoliating means you're exposing new, fresh skin underneath who hasn't seen the light of day yet, so it's super important to follow up with a moisturisers or body oil.
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