Skin After Exfoliation [Care/Problems & Remedies]

Taking proper care of your skin after exfoliation is crucial for achieving and maintaining healthy, radiant skin. This guide will take you through every step, from understanding the process to managing potential problems and remedies.

Skin After Exfoliation
Photo by Anna Tarazevich

What Happens to Your Skin After Exfoliation

After exfoliating, your skin will undergo several changes. The outer layer of dead skin cells has been removed, leaving the newer, more sensitive layers exposed. The immediate effects can be both positive and negative:

Increased Absorption: Your skin is more capable of absorbing skincare products. This means that moisturizers, serums, and treatments will be more effective.

Sensitivity: The newer skin is more sensitive to sunlight, temperature, and certain chemicals. It’s prone to quicker sunburn and may react adversely to strong skincare products.

Dryness: The skin might feel dry or tight as the natural oils are removed along with the dead skin cells.



Immediate Steps to Take to Care for Your Skin After Exfoliation

Following exfoliation, it’s vital to take immediate action to ensure your skin heals and benefits properly. Here are the detailed steps:

Rinse with Cool Water: Immediately after completing the exfoliation process, thoroughly rinse your face using cool water. The cool temperature helps to minimize pore size and soothes the skin.

Gentle Drying: Use a clean, soft towel to pat your face dry. Do not rub the towel against your skin after exfoliation as this could lead to unnecessary irritation.

Apply Moisturizer: Select a moisturizer that is free from irritants like fragrances and alcohol. Apply a liberal amount to your skin, particularly focusing on dry areas.

You can try out this CeraVe Moisturizing Cream from Amazon.


Long-Term Care for Your Skin After Exfoliation

To maintain the benefits of exfoliation and prevent potential downsides, long-term care is essential. Here’s what to consider:

Sun Protection: Always apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to your face. If you’re going outside for an extended period, reapply sunscreen every two hours.

This Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Water Resistant and Non-Greasy Sunscreen Lotion from Amazon has Broad Spectrum SPF 70 and will effectively protect your skin.

Regular Moisturization: Continue using a gentle, fragrance-free moisturizer. Moisturize in the morning and before bed to maintain skin hydration.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Avoid products with high concentrations of alcohol, acids, or fragrances. Read the ingredients list on skincare products carefully.


Common Problems and Remedies After Exfoliation

Post-exfoliation skin problems can range from mild to severe. Identifying and addressing these issues promptly is crucial:

Dryness: If you notice flaking or a tight feeling, use a deeply hydrating, hypoallergenic moisturizer. You may also consider using a hydrating serum before moisturizing.

Redness or Irritation: If your skin is red or irritated, use a soothing serum containing ingredients like aloe vera or chamomile. Applying a cold compress for a few minutes can also help reduce redness.

Heightened Sensitivity: If you find your skin reacting negatively to products you normally use, switch to a specialized sensitive skincare line. If the sensitivity persists, consult a dermatologist for a tailored treatment plan.


Common Mistakes to Avoid

Mistakes in post-exfoliation care can negate the benefits and even cause harm. Be aware of these pitfalls:

Over-Exfoliating: Exfoliating too often can strip your skin of essential oils, leading to dryness and irritation. Stick to once or twice a week, depending on your skin type and the type of exfoliant used.

Skipping Sunscreen: Sunscreen isn’t just for sunny days; UV radiation can harm your skin even on cloudy or rainy days. Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen and make it a part of your daily routine.

Using Harsh Products: Avoid using products with harsh ingredients such as benzoyl peroxide or high concentrations of glycolic acid immediately after exfoliating. Such products can exacerbate sensitivity and irritation.


Skin After Exfoliation [Other Issues]

Your skin after exfoliation might encounter other issues not covered in this article. Therefore, we’ve provided links to such articles on this site that address other issues you might encounter post-exfoliation.

Red Skin After Exfoliation: 3 Proven Remedies

How Long Does it Take for Over Exfoliated Skin to Heal?

How Long Does it Take for Exfoliation to Lighten Skin?

What Does Exfoliation Do to Your Skin: An Expert Breakdown

How to Repair Skin After Over Exfoliating: 5 Expert Tips

Should I Use Soap After Exfoliating? An In-Depth Answer