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While we’re big fans of exfoliation, but sometimes, we have to admit, this key skin care step can get a bad rap. What exactly are we talking about? Well, the thing is, some face scrubs (which are mechanical exfoliators), can be harsh on the skin. But not all face scrubs are made the same—it’s all about finding one that is formulated to be gentle on skin. We chatted with Dr. Rocio Rivera, head of scientific communications for L’Oréal Paris, to get the rundown on how face scrubs can be gentle yet effective. Here, learn all about this topic, plus find our best face scrubs and tips for using them as part of your skin care routine.
As you’re probably well aware, face scrubs are mechanical exfoliators, meaning they are formulated with granules that help physically remove dead skin cells from skin’s surface. This buildup of dead skin cells can dull the appearance of skin, and removing it can help leave you with a brighter look.
Contrary to what you may think, it is possible for a face scrub to be gentle, yet effective. This can be achieved when a face scrub is formulated with particles that don’t scratch the skin, says Dr. Rivera. How you exfoliate also plays a part in ensuring you receive gentle, yet effective exfoliation from your face scrub. “It’s important to avoid using a face scrub on dry facial skin,” says Dr. Rivera. Rather, skin should be damp or wet. “This will ensure the particles ‘glide’ on the skin rather than scratching it. Another note is looking at what the actual scrubbing particle is, and then adjusting the pressure you use when massaging it onto the skin.”
Now that you know that it is possible for a face scrub to be gentle, yet effective, it’s time to find the best face scrub for your skin care concerns. The following three face scrubs are formulated with a naturally-derived blend of three pure sugars L’Oréal Paris considers an ingredient to be naturally-derived if it is unchanged from its natural state or has undergone processing yet still retains greater than 50 percent of its molecular structure from its original natural source. Each of these three face scrubs melts into skin for gentle, yet effective exfoliation, glides on and rinses off easily, doesn’t dry out skin, and can be used by all skin types.
L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Nourish & Soften Face Scrub: This face scrub leaves skin feeling softer and smoother and looking more refined. Immediately, skin feels smooth and comforted, while skin feels nourished with continued use over time.
L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Purify & Unclog Face Scrub: This face scrub effectively removes dirt, oil, and impurities from the surface of skin and polishes away dead skin. With continued use over time, pores look tighter, unclogged, and less visible.
L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Smooth & Glow Face Scrub: This face scrub gives skin a glowing appearance immediately and leaves skin feeling baby-soft, smooth, and comforted with continued use over time.
We already hinted about this early—to help ensure you gently, yet effectively exfoliate, you should make sure you are using light pressure. For any of the three face scrubs mentioned previously, we have some more specific advice: Smooth a small amount onto clean skin, then massage it over your face with wet fingers. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry. But that’s not all—these face scrubs can also be used to smooth and refine lips, improving their overall look. (Just don’t use on chapped lips).
Clear your schedule! You can use our three best face scrubs three times a week.
We’ve got you covered with more exfoliating advice. Next, head on over to our article, How to Exfoliate When You Have Sensitive Skin.