05 Aug 2021

Over-exfoliated? Don't overthink it!

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By Saya Skincare

With everything in life, there should be balance. From relationships, to work, fitness and wellbeing - balance is key!

Even in skincare, too much or too little of something can lead to problems. Here at Saya, exfoliating is one of our favourite things to do - it brightens, improves texture and corrects the complexion. But, overdoing it can lead to breakouts, premature ageing, dehydration, or excessive oiliness.

We’re going to guide you through over-exfoliation. What it looks like, how to avoid it, and what you can do to fix it..

.. especially when you’ve gone a little OTT.

Our skin is in a constant state of repairing and replacing, usually leaving layers of dead skin that build up over time (our bodies shed up to 500 million cells a day!).

While exfoliation is imperative for a healthy complexion, and aids topical products to sink deeper into the skin, too much can lead to damage.

We generally recommend to exfoliate 2-3 times per week, the exact amount is completely up to your skin type and what it can handle.

Here’s where it gets a *little* confusing. Some of the reasons we exfoliate (dry, flaky skin and/or breakouts), can be signs of over-exfoliation. If you’ve been dousing yourself in acids, or scrubbing your face on the daily, there’s a big chance your skin is crying out for a break.

How do you tell if you’ve taken the exfoliation a little too far?

  • Redness and peeling
  • Breakouts, usually small pimples
  • Irritation & sensitivity
  • Overly shiny appearance to the skin

How can you get your skin back to normal?
The damage from over-exfoliation may take up to a month to heal, but it IS possible! The first step? Stop all exfoliation. The goal is to support your skin through this time of healing. So cut back on the actives, retinol and exfoliating acids, and give your skin a break. Your skin routine should be simple, including a mild cleanser, gentle moisturiser and a facial oil.

Once your skin is recovered, gently incorporate face exfoliants back into your routine, starting with once per week. If you don’t run into any issues, feel free to ramp it up! A good tip to keep on track and not to overdo it is to choose an exfoliation day of the week. We like to recommend Monday and Thursday (pre & post the weekend!).

Exfoliation is definitely one area of our skin routine where less IS more.

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