Exfoliating Cleansers: Everything You Need To Know

Exfoliating Cleansers: Everything You Need To Know
Erdem Good Skin

The days of exfoliating weekly are over: with the rise of exfoliating acids and the vogue for daily skincare routines that encompass ever more steps, using a daily exfoliator is more common and - if you heed the advice of experts - doing so is the key to having glowing, clear skin.

It’s important to tread carefully here. Exfoliating with a scrub that scratches at the skin because it contains granules with rough edges may cause micro-scars, which will, over time, become macro and start to compromise the skin’s health. Instead, grab an exfoliating cleanser that contains either tiny, smooth granules, or opt for one that relies on acid to gently break down the ‘glue’ that binds cells together and thereby slough off dead skin cells. While you're here, and clearly interested in exfoliating, check out our edit of best scalp scrubs.

As always, we’d still recommend cleansing twice and incorporating your daily exfoliating cleanser either as your second step in the evening after using a gentle cleanser to remove make-up and grime, or switching it in in the morning instead of your usual one. Another big rule to make sure you stick to? Wear an SPF daily whenever you’ve been exfoliating to protect new, emerging cells from damage. 

Here’s our pick of the best:

Dr Levy 3 Deep Cell Renewal Micro-Resurfacing Cleanser

A winner of our Best Beauty Buys award, this cleanser is a clever number that can be customised. Either apply it daily and wash it off after massaging into skin, leave it on for a minute or two for a deeper exfoliation, or apply it as a mask for a shade longer if you’d like your skin to really reap the benefits.

£39

darker skin tones-enzyme cleaner-bottle


Ideal for skin that’s prone to pigmentation, this cleanser contains enzymes to help break down bonds between dead cells, and vitamin C to help reduce melanin production and therefore pigmentation patches.

Available at Harrods | £45

Murad Age Reform AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser

An all-round hero, especially for skin prone to break outs, this cleanser both smooths and softens the surface of the skin, and, thanks to the BHA aka Salicylic Acid content, also dissolves clogs to keep skin clear. It also rather handily contains liquorice extract to act as an anti-inflammatory, which is great news if you get angry, red spots.

£35

Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Exfoliating Cleansing Powder

Containing ground walnut shell to gently exfoliate and bamboo charcoal to absorb impurities, this is the one to go for if blocked pores worry you. Make sure you massage it into the nooks around your nose and into any areas of congestion in small, gentle circular motions.

£25

 
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