What you want to avoid are overly aggressive mechanical exfoliants, which can cause damage no matter your skin type or age. “Any scrubs with large particles like apricot pits should be avoided, as they can cause micro-tears in the skin at any age,” Chilukuri says. “Anything that is too drying or used too frequently should also be avoided.”
As for how to use these exfoliants at home, not much prep is needed—just make sure your skin is clean and makeup-free. “Do not use a washcloth to apply the exfoliating product,” Chilukuri says. “Either use your fingertips or use the Clarisonic sensitive brush head. After rinsing off the exfoliating agent, immediately apply a hydrating moisturizer. When using the proper exfoliating product, you should not have to stop your retinol. Always use an excellent mineral sunscreen every day.” And you don’t want to overdo it. You don’t want to exfoliate every day, but a few times a week or once a week will help, depending on your skin.
Ready to try some at-home exfoliating products? Take a look at some of our recommendations below.