Subscribe

New approach to exfoliating delivers lit-from-within glow

We all know clear, glowing and bright skin is on most people’s wish list.

How to get there is a less obvious path that can sometimes have twists and turns in the form of breakouts, dullness, texture and pigmentation. 

While serums and actives get a good chunk of the skincare limelight these days (and let’s face it, it’s deserved) for addressing and reversing these challenges, there’s another step that gets less credit for its ability to transform skin.  Okay, beyond paying a visit to your local skin expert, like those at Clear Skincare Clinics, because sometimes that’s just not possible!

It’s exfoliating effectively and regularly.  

Why is exfoliating important?

An important step in achieving that elusive glow, exfoliating consistently ensures we remove the top layer of flaky skin caused by accumulating dead skin cells. This is important because those lingering surface cells can stick around and cause issues like clogged pores, leading to breakouts or over-production of oil, ending up in whiteheads, blackheads and acne spots. 

That surface build-up can also prevent your active skincare like serums from penetrating as well as they should and getting to the layers of skin that most need it. 

Exfoliating also encourages new skin cell turnover. This is a natural process that happens to skin on a daily basis, where the skin cells renew and the outer layer sheds off. This natural cycle slows down as we age and can leave skin looking a little flat and dull, without a healthy rosy glow and can worsen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.  

How can you exfoliate?

So now we know why it’s one of the keys to great skin, how should we do it? 

There are a number of options for exfoliation including products that rely on mechanical friction knows as physical exfoliation, including wash clothes and face scrubs with physical particles, or using products with AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) or BHAs (beta hydroxy acids), known as chemical exfoliation. 

AHAs work by breaking down the  ‘glue’ that holds dead skin cells together while BHA’s work similarly but are oil soluble, so they are known for getting deep into pores to clear them out as well as regulating oil overproduction, helping minimise breakouts.  

While both types of exfoliators have their benefits, there are also downsides and you need to consider your skin type before deciding which approach is right for you, particularly if you have sensitive skin. 

Also keep in mind that more does not mean better – too vigorous or rough an exfoliation can cause irritation and damage to skin and can even worsen conditions like acne. Some options are too aggressive for more than occasional use.

A new gentle solution

As mentioned, both approaches have benefits, so why not combine the two approaches? That’s exactly what Clear Skincare has done with its newest product release.

Taking the best of both worlds, Clear Skincare has created the new Micro Polish Powder with Salicylic Acid, an incredibly fine powder that gives a gentle exfoliation while also calling on the benefits of Salicylic Acid. 

Salicylic Acid is a BHA derived from the Meadowsweet plant that works by loosening the bond between our outer skin cells and deeply exfoliating skin. It helps to unclog pores and reduce oil and sebum secretion helping reduce acne and breakouts.

Developed by doctors, the powder is packed full of active ingredients designed to remove dead skin cells and soaks up impurities and is gentle enough to be used daily with no irritation or dryness in sight. 

To use, you mix a small amount with water in your fingertips and gentle massage over skin on your face and neck using circular motions for at least 30 seconds before rinsing away. 

The best part is, it’s easy to fit into your daily routine as you can also multi-task by mixing it in with your usual cleanser.

What could be easier? After use apply your serum, moisturiser and SPF as usual and say hello to the glow!

  • To find out more about how to introduce an exfoliating powder into your skincare routine, as well as which skincare products to pair it with in order to achieve your skin goals or address any skin concerns you have, book a free skin and treatment consultation at your local Clear Skincare clinic.

Want lush, shiny hair? Why scalp care is the new skincare

Given the attention we give our facial skin, it’s somewhat surprising most of us have never really considered that it extends well beyond our hairline.

When it comes to our heads, we’ve always been more concerned with the condition of the hair that sprouts from it, than what lies underneath. 

Which is an oversight according to experts, because treating our scalp well is exactly what can contribute to healthy, resilient and luscious locks. Better education and increased product options mean the tide is turning as dedicated scalp-care becomes a new haircare must-have alongside traditional shampoo, conditioner and styling products. 

“Scalp health is important as it is like a garden that grows beautiful flowers,” explains Nigel Russell, trichologist and hairdresser with over thirty years experience. “If it is either over hydrated or under hydrated, the result will not be good. If a scalp gets too much build-up and is not exfoliated properly then this may create scaling, redness and irritation.”

He says poor scalp health can lead to ongoing issues that become hard to manage and interfere with healthy hair growth, with strands becoming weaker and prone to breakage and increased hair fall, not to mention dandruff.

Stacey August, hairdresser and owner of Village Hair agrees, saying scalp dysfunction means you won’t be getting the best from your style. 

“You may experience your hair being over-oily, creating flat, dull hair, or if you have an extremely dry, flaky scalp your hair may in turn be very dry as there aren’t enough natural oils to nourish it. Another sign is that your hair is starting to thin.”

Scalp support: Kerastase Genesis Anti Hair-fall Fortifying Serum; Virtue Labs Topical Scalp Supplement; Sunday Riley Clean Rinse Clarifying Scalp Serum; Actyva Purezza Exfoliant Gel Treatment; Kevin Murphy Scalp Spa Scrub; Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-exfoliating Scalp Scrub Shampoo; Briogeo Scalp Revival Stimulating Therapy Massager

Commonly we just aren’t increasing the cell turnover in the area the way we do when we exfoliate our face, particularly following heavy or repetitive use of styling products and dry shampoo that can coat strands and contribute to follicle congestion.

Other factors like vitamin deficiencies, health conditions, hormones, medication, high cortisol levels due to stress and even a change in weather have each been known to impact the health of the area which contains a myriad of blood vessels that transport the all-important nutrients your hair needs for growth, protection, shine and suppleness. Dandruff can also be caused by a fungus called Malassezia, a yeast that thrives on excess scalp oil.

Flakes on your collar is a common first indicator something is amiss but even if there are no signs of trouble, treating your scalp well will reap benefits.

Washing your hair thoroughly and regularly is key, ensuring shampoo is distributed well and massaged into the roots before being rinsed away completely. 

Beyond the shower-standard products we’re used to, dedicated, occasional-use items to keep the area in good shape now include scalp scrubs with both gritty particles as well as more gentle AHAs that break down product and sebum build-up and dissolves dead skin cells. Just like a face routine, once cleansing is complete, replenishment is necessary too. Traditionally this was contributed to with conditioner but now also includes the option of treatment serums and oils that increase hydration and offer vitamins and nutrition that support hair follicles. 

“A good scalp massage will also stimulate blood flow and keep the scalp healthy so it’s producing good healthy hair,” adds Russell. “It can stop the scalp becoming too tight across the head, which often occurs when we are stressed.”

He agrees scrubs and dedicated massagers can be helpful.

“As long as the teeth of the brush are not stiff plastic and it is a gentle action then they are fine but not on an oily scalp as this would stimulate oil production.”

To prevent too much trial and error and to diagnose any more serious issues, August suggests a good first step is to consult an expert in the salon. She uses a special Kemon Trico analysis microscope to get a close-up view of hair and scalp. A connected app then helps diagnose their condition and recommend appropriate products.