How to Exfoliate the Right Way

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Most of us have had a memorable experience scrubbing our skin with a grainy exfoliant that has left it feeling a little red and raw, not quite resulting in that elusive glow we had set out to achieve. However, it can be hard to know the best protocol when it comes to exfoliating, it is an essential step in all skincare routines when it comes to a smooth, radiant and clear complexion. Read on to discover everything you need to know to 'do exfoliant' the right way.

Why exfoliate?

Exfoliating is a “must-do” regardless of whether you have normal, dry, oily or combination skin. There are at least five good reasons why you need to engage in an effective scrubbing action as part of your beauty regime at least once a week. Exfoliating:

  1. Assists in sloughing away dead skin cells making the way for younger cells to come through.
  2. Unclogs pores, balancing oil production and reducing the occurrence of breakouts.
  3. Makes your skincare work harder for you by enhancing the deep penetration of any active serums and oils that you are using, especially helping anti-ageing products to keep those fine lines at bay.
  4. Overcomes the issue of stubborn dry skin that is not absorbing creams or lotions properly.
  5. Refines pores and the appearance of blackheads for a clearer, smoother complexion.

Which exfoliant?

The Edible Beauty philosophy is based on preserving your skin acid mantle and ensuring the skin barrier is kept strong and intact. This essentially means that you do not experience premature ageing or drying and hypersensitive skin.  This is why it is most important to choose a gentle exfoliant, as harsher ones actually wreak havoc on the skin's naturally healthy state by overly stripping it of oils and disrupting the ideal pH. To ensure your exfoliant is working with your skin, you should choose one which ticks the below boxes:

  • Contains natural exfoliant beads such as rice, walnut husks, cranberry or wattleseed. This ensures the skin is not damaged in the process of your scrubbing. The Edible Beauty & Desert Lime Flawless Micro-Exfoliant contains natural beads of rice and Australian Wattleseed in a coconut oil base to remove dead skin cells without destroying and drying the skin.
  • Contains natural plant-based fruit enzymes and naturally occurring (not synthetic) Alpha Hydroxy Acids such as Lime, Strawberry and Apple extracts to remove dead skin cells and help to stimulate collagen production and soften fine lines.
  • Avoid peels and chemical exfoliants containing harsh BHAs unless your skin is incredibly resilient. My experience is these peels tend to leave sensitive skin red, irritated and can make the skin more sensitive to UV damage and hyperpigmentation.

How to exfoliate?

  1. Start by cleansing your face with your regular cleansing milk.
  2. Use a quarter size of your face scrub and gently apply to the face using circular motions, avoiding the eye area and concentrating on areas such as the side of your nose and forehead, where you may have a predisposition to fine lines and wrinkles.
  3. Gently massage the exfoliant for approximately 30 seconds, adding water to emulsify.
  4. Rinse off with warm water and gently pat skin dry with a warm washcloth. Follow with your serums, oils and creams avoiding your toner on the days you exfoliate especially if you have sensitive skin.

How often?

When it comes to exfoliating, less is actually best.

  • If you have dry or sensitive skin, I recommend exfoliating once or twice a week. Avoid sensitive areas of your face and be sure to use a gentle exfoliant with small exfoliating beads.
  • If you have oily skin, exfoliate three times a week for most effective results in balancing oil production and reducing breakouts.
  • If you have normal skin, exfoliating 2-3 times a week is effective at stimulating cell turnover and removing dead skin cells.
  • If you have cystic or chronic inflamed, acne I recommend holding off on exfoliating. It is likely to leave the skin more red and inflamed. In stead be diligent about using an effective cleansing milk. Our No.1 Belle Frais Cleansing Milk contains a small amount of salicylic acid which effectively reduces congestion and calms down flares up. Our Turmeric Beauty Latte Booster Serum can also be used as a spot treatment to tackle breakouts!



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Anna Mitsios

Adv. Dip. Naturopathy. Adv. Dip. Nutrition. B.Com (Honours)

Anna is a certified naturopath and nutritionist and founder of leading Australian natural skincare and wellness company, Edible Beauty Australia. Anna has been featured in various publications including Mind Body Green, Women’s Health and Allure. She is committed to the natural transformation of her client’s skin using proven botanicals, nutrients and herbal formulations, both on the inside and out.  

Anna’s career began in the corporate sector, where she specialised in corporate finance and private banking for over ten years working in Sydney and New York for a large Australian bank. Anna’s career change was sparked by her own health journey, following a diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes at 18 years of age.  Her diagnosis triggered her intense study of botanicals and nutrition to manage auto-immune condition and assist others in attaining optimal health. Anna’s naturopathy career has included working as a naturopath within a reputable natural fertility clinic in Sydney, within a pharmacy and health food store and running her own naturopathy practice. 

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