I use two types of mechanical exfoliation in my skin care routine. One is what often comes to mind: scrubs. The second is one we often use but do not think about: facial brushes/towels.
I am wary of using too much mechanical exfoliation because I fear it damages my skin more than helping it. I’m not saying mechanical exfolaiton is bad… I just have a tendency of abusing it. My mind knows if I run too hard my skin becomes damage. However the feeling of scrubbing my face just feels so damn satisfying! Tell me I’m not the only one! Please?
The effects of physical defoliators are instantaneous. You will see and feel much smoother, softer and brighter skin right after using. I also like the fact that I can use during or right after I wash my face. There are some exfoliation that requires a completely dried clean face to use. This saves me a few extra minutes and fit the flow of my skincare routine better.And with mechanical exfoliation, you can incorporate a facial massage as well!
Scrubs comes in all types of exfoliating texture. There are sugar, salt, ground nuts, ground seeds, beads, silica, basically anything that is in a sand-like texture. I personally like to be environmentally conscious and use bio-degradable ones like sugars, salts and plant material. Plus these materials can be more gentle and other added skin care benefits.
My personal favorite is using sugar scrubs. I love the fact that sugar melts, therefore limiting my possibility of over-scrubbing! Sugar is also very moistening for your skin, which is a great combo when you are removing the top layer of protection. That way the extra moisture can act as skin protector and give your a healthier glow.Sugar scrub are also one of my favorite scrubs to use whenever I have any acne. It is gentle enough and helps calm any active breakouts I have. Using other types of scrubs tend to dry out and irritate my acne.
I usually DIY my own sugar scrub, but when I am feeling luxurious (or lazy heh), I have two products that I have been reaching for: Tony Moly Strawberry Jam Sugar Scrub and Elishacoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub. Both product smells so delicious that it takes extra willpower to not lick it!
Tony Moly’s Strawberry Jam Sugar Scrub uses two types of exfoliators: sugar and strawberry. This sugar scrubs stands out from others because I love that it contains strawberries. Not only it smells amazing, like strawberry jam, it has amazing skin benefits. Strawberries naturally contains AHA which is a chemical exfoliatant. So if we are extra technical, this scrub is part mechanical and part chemical. Strawberries are beneficial for those with oily skin since it helps with sebum control. Strawberries also has brightening effects as well. Both effects that always benefits my skin.
This scrub has an interesting warming effect as well. Once you wet the scrub, it causes your skin to warm. This creates a steaming effect, opening pores and allowing deep seated debris to come out. This warming sensation also increase blood circulation to the surface giving you a temporary glow.
From all the sugar scrubs I have used in the past, the size and amount of sugar granules are the gentlest. However because of its warming effect, I still do not think this is suitable for extra sensitive skin. But it would be beneficial for oily, dry and normal skin types. The only con I have for this product is its packaging. As cute as it is, it would be a lot easier to use in tube form.
To use: Apply to lightly moisten face. (make sure you don’t wet the jar or else it can go bad!). Gently massage over face until most of the sugar granules melt, avoiding the delicate eye area. I like to also exfoliate my lips with this product. Add more water if it becomes to dry. Rinse with cool water and pat dry.
Elishacoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub is another facial scrub that smells delicious and works well. If you are a chocolate lover you would love the smell of it, it smells like a milk chocolate bar *yum*. This scrub is marketed to contain Cocoa and Milk. Cocoa powder is often used to help repair skin and improve blood circulation. Milk is often used to soften and brighten skin.
In comparision to Tony Moly’s Strawberry Jam Sugar Scrub, the sugar granules are rougher and takes longer to melt. So I would suggest using it with more water and only massaging lightly until half of the sugar granules melt.This is not a scrub for anyone with sensitive skin!
Although the granules may be rougher, this scrub is also more hydrating than Tony Moly’s Strawberry Jam Sugar Scrub. My skins feels soft and hydrated after using 🙂
To use: instruction is the same as before. But be wary to run gently! You don’t want to damage your skin!
There are many exfolating tools in the market. Such as the well known Clarisonic. I but There are many other types as well, towels, pore brushes, sponges, basically any facial tool is one. The two I am going to talk about today is Memebox I’m brush and Missha Microfiber Clean-T.
I did a review on Memebox I’m Brush in my “Favorite Facial Tool” post. (if you want to check that out to know about other cleansing tools I like click here). But besides cleaning my face, I use this brush more purposely to exfoliate and masssage. I love the pink silicone side to massage my face and loosen black heads. The pore brush more of the exfoliating side. Think of rubbing your face on at cat. That is what it feels like. Not only it is super soft, it is a gentle manual exfoliate that you can do everyday:)
To use: Apply a small amount of your foam cleanser on the brush and lather it up. Go in small circles and lightly massage your massage your face. Wash with cool water and pat dry.
Missha Microfiber Clean- T is something new that I tried recently and end up loving. It is literally just a microfiber glove..well more of a finger glove. My hand is tiny so I can fit my whole hand. But I think for most people just 2 or 3 fingers. Regardless it is one of the softest microfiber towel-like thing I ever used. I like to use it with my foam cleanser..if I do not have any makeup on. I do not like the idea of staining it. I only hand wash and hang dry it. I do not know how well it will stand machine wash and dry.
To use: Wet glove and apply foam cleanser. Create a lather and gently rub in small circles on your face. Rinse with cool water and pat dry.
Do you like manual exfoliating? What are your favorite products?