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Exfoliation gives the most immediate improvement in the appearance of the skin.

Exfoliation removes the outer layer of the skin and can be mechanical (such as masks) or chemical.

Chemical exfoliants remove the surface skin cells such as alpha hydroxy acids and retinoids.


Alpha Hydroxy Acids are used to accelerate the exfoliation process, known as superficial peeling.

AHAs loosen the proteins that hold the skin cells together, allowing the surface ones to fall away, leaving a smoother complexion.

They also stimulate the production of collagen and natural hydrators.

Common AHAs include glycolic acid from sugar cane, citric acid from fruits and lactic acid from sour milk.

AHAs help to:

  • Reduce fine lines

  • Soften stronger lines

  • Smooth skin texture

  • Brighten the complexion

  • Reduce pore size


Retinoids have been used for more than 35 years and are the key ingredients in anti-ageing skincare.

So how do retinoids work as an exfoliator?

Retinoids increase the levels of a growth factor in the skin causing the skin to thicken and shed the older, cells at the surface.

This is one of the reasons retinoids cause skin flaking, and it is a good way to tell if your retinoid or retinol is working.

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