If you’re a health and wellness enthusiast with a love of black-charcoal lemonade, you’re probably already clued in to all the reasons for cleansing your body. News flash: Your skin needs the same kind of ritual—especially following summer, with all those months of harsh heat and pore-clogging products, combined with tons of oil and sweat. A proper deep clean requires more than using even the best facial cleanser. What we’re really talking about is how to purify those congested pores and how to exfoliate your face. Read on for how to add these two all-important steps to your beauty routine.
- HOW TO USE A DEEP-PORE CLEANSER
Why do some people seem to have airbrushed skin IRL while others don’t? If you have oily skin, your pores may just be more noticeable by nature. Plus, when pores collect an excess of dead skin cells, product residue and other grime, they can become clogged, bloated and more obvious than you’d like. To shrink their look down to size, you want a product that can act as a deep-pore cleanser, like a clay face mask.
Clay has the power to attract and pull impurities out of your pores, like a magnet. Today, it’s no sweat to find a clay face mask tailored especially for your skin type. For instance, the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Mask lineup has a variety of formulas, all featuring three types of mineral clay.
How can you add this deep-pore cleanser to your post-summer skin routine? Two times a week, after you’ve washed up, apply an even layer of the clay face mask and let it work its magic for 10 minutes before rinsing. If your face is a combo-skin-type situation, you can also try multi-masking: Pick up a few different clay face masks and apply what you need exactly where you need it.
- HOW TO EXFOLIATE YOUR FACE
Before Hollywood celebrities walk the red carpet, you can bet they’ve reached for the best face exfoliator they can get their hands on. There’s no faster way to achieve radiant skin than to slough off the dead skin cells that are sitting on the surface—and literally dulling your shine. If you’re curious about how to exfoliate your face effectively, you actually have several options.
First, you have ingredients like alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs)—glycolic acid is among the most popular—which work by dissolving the “glue” holding dead skin cells together. Bonus: Glycolic acid can also help unclog pores (yes!). AHAs don’t clean pores the same way that a clay face mask does, so you’re free to use both in your routine.
Alternatively, you have physical exfoliants—anything that has a scrubby texture to manually slough off the lacklustre skin cells that are loitering around. There are a wide variety of gritty ingredients used in physical exfoliants, and some are harsher than others. Avoid anything that seems too abrasive when you apply it. (If your skin feels a bit raw afterwards, that’s a red flag.) Instead, go for gentler ingredients, like the naturally derived brown, blond and white sugars in L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Scrub.
Remember: With exfoliation, more isn’t more. Scrubbing too hard or too often can annoy and irritate your skin, triggering inflammation. So how often should you exfoliate your face? That depends on how sensitive you are, but as a general rule, two to three times a week should be enough to get you glowing.