How chemical exfoliation works - Garnier SkinActive How chemical exfoliation works - Garnier SkinActive

How chemical exfoliation works to perfect your skin

You don’t have to scrub your skin to remove dead skin cells. A great way to exfoliate your skin is by using chemical exfoliation. These products work from within pores to help loosen and remove dead skin cells. Using chemical exfoliation is a great to energize your skin, refresh your surface skin cell layer and remove dead skin cells. Find out which three ingredients are particularly effective in chemical exfoliation.

What Is Chemical Exfoliation?

Unlike scrubs, which have grainy ingredients that slough off skin, chemical exfoliators use ingredients with a low pH to help loosen dead skin cells. “Chemical exfoliation works by loosening the bonds between cells with acids or enzymes,” says Garnier consulting dermatologist Dr. Diane Madfes. “The acids work by breaking down the sugars in the skin, which then causes the cells of the epidermis to loosen and slough off.”

Here are three acids to look for in a chemical exfoliant.

1. Alpha Hydroxy Acids

These acids are derived from fruit sugars or milk. Using alpha hydroxy acids as an exfoliant can help loosen dead skin cells and refresh your top layer of skin. They can help your skin feel softer and look more refined and can also help smooth skin and leave skin looking healthy and vibrant. Alpha hydroxy acids can come in a variety of concentrations — consult with your dermatologist as to which concentration you should use.

2. Enzymes

Surely you remember enzymes’ ability to break down food particles in biology class. Turns out they also have the ability to break down and loosen dead skin cells! They can help decompose proteins on your skin so that you can slough off dead skin and reveal softer, more radiant skin.

3. Retinol

Retinol is a Vitamin A derivative that can help exfoliate your skin. It can help remove dead skin cells and is also an effective ingredient in anti-aging skin care. It can be used as an ingredient in the form of a peel, a serum or in a moisturizer. Concentrations will vary accordingly, so make sure to check with your dermatologist to find what’s right for your skin type.