Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Natural Exfoliants

Exfoliants are a wonderful way to customize your soaps and products.  What is an exfoliant?  It is an additive that adds texture and sloughs away dead skin cells making the skin brighter, smoother and healthier.  They are an important part of good skin care whether buffing away dead skin from your face or your body.  They come in many forms and range from very gentle for facial products to rough for products requiring the ability to really scrub.
The face is very delicate and needs a very mild exfoliant to prevent damage to the skin tissue.  The body can take on a medium exfoliant, while the rougher surface of feet can handle a strong exfoliant.  Additionally, natural exfoliants not only add sloughing ability, they also have vital nutrients for healthy skin.  Below you will find a list of natural additives by the level of their exfoliating properties.
Very Mild Exfoliants - Contain lactic acids or fruit acids to loosen dead skin cells, for the gentlest possible exfoliation.  Recommended for facial products, such as masks. 
Mild Exfoliants - Have a gentle scrubbing ability.  Recommended for facial products, such as scrubs.  Any flours or powders listed in this category should be fine grain only.
Medium Exfoliants - Good exfoliation ability, but mild enough to be used on your body.  Do not use these ingredients on your face or other very delicate areas. Salts and powders listed can be fine or coarse.  Recommended for body scrubs.  
Strong Exfoliants - Should be used on tough areas, like the feet.  They are too rough for most areas of the body, and are far too rough for the face.  
How to Use Exfoliants                                                                                                                                           
Exfoliants are very easy to use.  Most of them are simply added to soaps, scrubs, masks and more at the same time that other additives, such as scent or color, are added.  Keep in mind that flowers and leaves will darken during the saponification process.  Certain ingredients will not work at all in soap, such as Dead Sea Salt.
Choose your exfoliant first by the level of sloughing intensity it has matching it to your product (i.e. facial products would get a mild exfoliant).  Then choose exfoliants by their benefits.  Oatmeal is a gentle exfoliant and is excellent for the health of the skin.  You can also use some exfoliants to color your soaps such as the clays.

 
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1 comment:

  1. This is an awesome post. I love the comprehensive list-some things I have never thought of and some I've never heard of. Thanks Erica, for such great information.

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