10 Exfoliation Mistakes You Might Be Making

10 Exfoliation Mistakes You Might Be Making

Are you exfoliating your skin regularly? If not, you should include this step into your skincare routine. Regular exfoliation makes the skin look younger, smooth, and supple. Regardless of your skin type, you should look to exfoliate. However, it is important to know about some of the exfoliating mistakes that you might be making so that you don’t damage your skin.

In this post, we will consider some common exfoliation mistakes that people make and how to avoid these. First, let’s see the types of exfoliants that there are.

Types of Exfoliants

There are several ways to exfoliate, and each way comes with its advantages and drawbacks. There are two main exfoliants that you can use. There are:

Physical Exfoliants

There are the most popular types of exfoliants. They work by removing dead cells on the skin mechanically. Some of these include scrubs, washcloths, sonic brushes, and similar products. In simple terms, these are substances with a texture that can scrub the face.

Chemical Exfoliants

These are popular as well. They work by gently dissolving the dead skin cells on the skin and make them fall off. Examples of these include retinoids, beta-hydroxy acid, and hydroxy acid.

Why Should You Exfoliant Properly?

It is important to exfoliate properly because if you don’t, you might end up causing more harm than good to your skin. With this in mind, let’s see some of the mistakes made by people when it comes to exfoliation.

Mistakes to Avoid

There are some exfoliating mistakes that you must avoid.

Mistake 1 – Using the Wrong Exfoliator

The first and arguably most common mistake that many make is using the wrong exfoliator. This is similar to the mistake of using the wrong skin care product. With skincare products, you might try several until you arrive at one that is suitable for your skin.

Using the wrong exfoliator will not allow you to get the results that you want. Using an exfoliator is supposed to ensure that the skin looks bright and supple. But if you are using the wrong product, instead of looking great, your skin might very well end up looking swollen, red, and might even burn. If this happens, then you will need to change the product or the system of application.

If your skin is sensitive or prone to breakouts, then we recommend that you use a paraben and sulfate-free product. This will ensure that the skin looks healthy.

If you are using a new exfoliator, it is better to be careful and consult a dermatologist if you are unsure about the product.

Mistake 2 – Exfoliating Too Often

Exfoliation involves removing dead skin cells from the skin, and it is easy for you to end up over-doing it. It is easy to over-exfoliate as well as not exfoliate enough.

How often, then, should you exfoliate? Well, the frequency of exfoliation is dependent on your skin type and requirements. The goal should be to avoid any skin problems while keeping your skin looking smooth and useful.

According to top experts, if you have sensitive skin, then you should exfoliate a maximum of twice every week. On the other hand, if you have regular or combination skin, you can get away with exfoliating thrice weekly. Folks with oily skin can exfoliate for up to five times weekly.

If you aren’t sure about your skin type, exfoliate less frequently and observe the effect on your skin.

Some people lightly exfoliate their skin daily. Well, if you aren’t too aggressive with the application, then you can also be fine with daily exfoliation. However, if you observe any effects like irritation or redness, then you should seek the advice of a dermatologist.

Mistake 3 – Scrubbing the Skin Too Hard

One popular mistake people make is aggressive application. Some assume that harder scrubbing will ensure a more effective session, but that is not true. If you aggressively scrub the skin or apply the exfoliator for too long, then you might cause inflammation of your skin.

Therefore, you must remember to gently apply the exfoliator to the skin. With mild pressure and a short time, you can get rid of dirt, dead skin cells, and grime on the skin without causing any inflammation.

Mistake 4 – Leaving the Skin Dry

After exfoliating, your skin might become dry. This is the time to hydrate and moisturize the skin. To prevent dry skin, use a moisturizer.

Skin products that you use just after exfoliating work better than any time. It serves as a good foundation.

By applying the right moisturizer that is compatible with your skin type, the moisture within the skin will be trapped and your skin hydrated.

Mistake 5 – Ignoring Sunscreen

Exfoliation removes the dead skin cells, and this exposes you to more problems if you aren’t careful. For example, it exposes you to the sun. Therefore, it is vital to take steps to protect yourself.

A good solution is to use sunscreen. All-mineral sunscreens are the top recommendation due to their protective properties. After exfoliating, remember to apply sunscreen before you go about your activities.

Mistake 6 – Not Exfoliating Other Parts of the Body

Exfoliation is only for the face, right? Wrong. Exfoliation is for the whole skin and not just your face. The skin is the largest organ of the body, and it needs to be taken care of.

If you don’t exfoliate the rest of the body, you are liable to end up with dull and dry skin. Therefore, if you want the entire body to look great, exfoliate all parts of the body. You could use a scrub or brush to exfoliate the other parts of the body.

Mistake 7 – Not Using a Physical Exfoliator

One very popular myth peddled by people is that using a physical exfoliator will result in damaging the skin by tearing it, thus causing bacteria and other skin problems to pop up. Do you also believe that using a physical exfoliator will damage the outer layer of your skin?

While it is true that some physical exfoliators can cause microtears in your skin, the products that often cause these are scrubs made from apricot, walnut, and other nutshells. These scrubs cause this because of their size. Therefore, they shouldn’t be used on the face.

However, there are several other physical exfoliators that don’t cause tears on the skin. For example, sugar is small and gentle enough to exfoliate the skin without causing any problems.

If you want to use a physical scrub or exfoliator, it is recommended that you don’t aggressively rub the skin. Gently rub the skin.

Mistake 8 – Trying to Exfoliate Blackheads

There are several products on the market that claim to be able to help you get rid of blackheads by exfoliating them. However, these have proved to be lies. As we have pointed out repeatedly in this article, exfoliators work to clean the top layer of your skin.

Blackheads are not on the skin; instead, they are contaminants like dirt and debris trapped in the skin. Therefore, it is physically impossible to use exfoliators to get rid of these blackheads.

If you want to get rid of blackheads, the best solution is BHAs. These are great because they can penetrate the skin and remove the impurities.

No scrubbing will remove the blackheads in your skin. Therefore, it is better to get BHAs or serums to get rid of blackheads instead of putting your hopes in an exfoliator.

Mistake 9 –Not Preparing the Skin

Before you use an exfoliator, it is vital that you have the skin prepared. What does this mean? It means that you must remove as many impurities as you can. For instance, you need to get rid of makeup on the skin. Afterward, you can use an exfoliator to remove the dead skin cells.

It is recommended to use a facial cleanser to prepare the skin. Note, though, that some facial cleansers have ingredients that act as exfoliators in them. If so, you need to be gentle as you use the exfoliator so that you don’t damage your skin.

Mistake 10 – Not Exfoliating Problematic Skin

If you have problematic or sensitive skin, you are likely wary of using exfoliators or similar skin products. Some have shunned these products entirely. However, that is not the way to go. Even skin that is sensitive or problematic can benefit from exfoliation.

If you have this type of skin, it is recommended that you don’t exfoliate daily but weekly. Also, you can use a gentle exfoliator that oxygenates the skin, hydrates, and smoothens it. With such an exfoliator, your skin is bound to look great.

Additionally, with this type of exfoliation, your other skincare products will work more effectively on the skin.


Exfoliating your skin is important if you want it to look great. There are several mistakes made when caring for the skin through exfoliation. We have discussed ten of the most common dead skincare methods, and we hope that we have provided solutions that will help you. Use the advice offered to get clear, smooth skin.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top