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Best Chemical Exfoliant For Dry Skin

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% Bha Liquid Exfoliant

Best Chemical Exfoliation for SENSITIVE Skin (PHA, LHA & Mandelic Acid) | Beck Wynta
  • A little goes a long way

  • Doesn’t irritate skin when used in moderation

  • Minimizes the appearance of large pores

  • Smoothes skin texture overtime

  • Could be irritating for some skin types

If you have breakouts, uneven skin tone, or texture you’d like to smooth, Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant is worth a try.

Skinceuticals Blemish + Age Defense Serum

If your acne issues have persisted beyond your tumultuous teenage years, and now its coinciding with concerns about aging, this is the serum for you. This oil-free solution helps to control acne by slowing down excess sebum production, minimizing blemishes, and deep cleaning the pores. Additionally, it fights aging by reducing hyperpigmentation caused by acne, smoothing skin texture, and refining pores. Its both sulfate and artificial fragrance-free. Use it once or twice daily, applying 4-5 drops to dry skin before continuing with moisturizer and the rest of your daily regimen.

The Best Exfoliating Face Wash For Dry Skin

What it is: Dermalist Ultra Hydrating Lactic Cleanser is an exfoliating cleanser thats vegan, cruelty-free, sulphate-free, and even artificial fragrance-free.

Why its so good: This is one of our go-to Lactic Acid cleanser, because it works as an exfoliator for dry skin too.

The effective formula lifts away oil, makeup, debris, and dead skin cells, leaving your complexion looking and feeling fresh.

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Things To Check Before Buying Pore Minimizer

  • Skin Type: Choose a pore minimizing product based on your skin type. For example, if you have dry skin, any product with salicylic acid or alcohol can be too drying. If you have oily skin, steer clear of oil-based products, especially creams.
  • Ingredients: Check the label to look for ingredients that you are allergic to. Also, avoid products with parabens, artificial dyes and fragrances, talc, and sulfates.
  • Product Type: Pore minimizing products come in different forms masks, toners, serums, creams, cleansers, and exfoliants. Include them in your skin care regimen depending on the product type and your skins needs. Use exfoliants and masks once or twice a week and serums and toners twice a day. Use a cleanser and moisturizer as a part of your skin care routine twice a day.

Following a strict skin care routine and using appropriate products will not help unless you break away from habits that may ruin your pores and skin.

Osea Undaria Body Polish

How To Choose The Right Chemical Exfoliator For Each Skin Type in 2021 ...

This body polish is also from OSEA but its a little more gentle overall. Great for skin thats extra dry and sensitive. It is creamy in consistency but yet strong enough to remove and exfoliate unwanted dry skin. After using it my skin looks slightly pink and plump. It takes dull skin and gives it a good polish, revealing the brightest and prettiest skin. Upon opening it, youre greeted with scents of lavender and Sweet Melissa. It awakens your senses and revitalizes your whole body. It exfoliates the skin with powdery grains of pumice, acai, and guarana. I get my body wet first, and then apply the body polish and use circular motions to rub it in. A serious skin treat! Get it here!

And there you have it! Everything you ever wanted to know about exfoliation plus some amazing clean beauty exfoliants that will do wonders for your dry skin.

Whats your favorite exfoliant for dry skin?

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Best Chemical Exfoliant For Normal To Dry Skin: Alpha

First up, alpha hydroxy acids, or AHAs. These are all water-soluble formulas that are naturally derived from foods such as milk, sugarcane, and almonds, explains Elyse Love, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist in New York City and Ulta Beauty dermatology partner. Common examples of AHAs include lactic, glycolic, and mandelic acids. They’re ideal for targeting uneven texture and hyperpigmentation, leaving your skin smoother, more even, and glowy, says Dr. Love. It bears mentioning that, some AHAs are gentler than others namely, lactic and mandelic tend to be slightly less irritating than glycolic, she notes. Overall, however, AHAs are a great option for those with normal to dry skin.

While AHAs are great at evening out discoloration for all skin tones, it bears mentioning that those with darker skin who are combating hyperpigmentation may find them especially useful for this reason. Though again, all of the chemical exfoliants work well across all skin colors considering your skin type and complexion concerns is the best way to choose the right one for you.

Paulas Choice Resist Advanced Pore

Enjoy smoother, younger-looking skin with regular use of the Paulas Choice Resist Advanced Pore-Refining Treatment. This chemical exfoliant contains 4% salicylic acid to reduce pores and improve skin texture. Plus, this time-release formula also contains powerful antioxidants to soften fine lines, reduce redness, and calm any sensitivity. You can use this weekly or daily, depending on your skins needs. All you need to do is apply a few drops to the face, neck, and chest after youve cleansed and toned.

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How To Exfoliate Your Face

People with dry or sensitive skin types should avoid physical exfoliation as it can further irritate and harm the skin. They should rather opt for chemical exfoliants like glycolic acid and lactic acid. On the other hand, people with oily or normal skin can choose both physical and chemical exfoliation.

For scrubbing, you can use a brush, a sponge or a glove to manually exfoliate. Whereas for chemical exfoliation, use a cotton pad to dab and wipe it all over your face. In case its in a cleanser form, use it like a normal face wash on damp skin.

How To Exfoliate Dry Skin

The best chemical exfoliant for your skin
  • To exfoliate dry skin, you may use a physical or chemical exfoliator. However, make sure the exfoliator is cream-based or has hydrating ingredients like aloe vera or olive oil. For chemical exfoliators, look for ingredients like glycolic acid.
  • Be gentle while your scrub your face in a circular motion.
  • Use a moisturizer with SPF 15 after exfoliating your skin.
  • Do not over-exfoliate your skin.

The following section can help you make a better purchase decision while buying an exfoliator for dry skin.

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Live Botanical Glowing Honey Mask

This mask began my love affair with Live Botanical. I love it! It makes my skin glow in minutes- no joke! I apply it all over in the morning and then grab my toothbrush and then rinse off once Im done brushing my teeth. It feels so hydrating and soothing to the skin. It gives a slight exfoliation too with herbal grains. The raw honey in this mask draws moisture to the skin while soaking up all the excess oils at the same time. What I love is that this mask can be used daily as a cleanser or as a mask a couple times a week. It really lives up to its name: Glowing Mask. I promise you wont be disappointed! I cant get enough of this decadent skin treat! Get it here!

Your skin wont be stripped with the Pai Virtuous Circle Exfoliator great for sensitive skin even!

How Often Should I Exfoliate

How often you should exfoliate depends on the product and your skin type. Some products are harsher and its enough to use them once or twice a week. Gentler products can be used on a daily basis.

According to the AAD, people with dry skin may need to exfoliate less frequently, and people with oily skin may need to exfoliate more frequently.

If you notice skin redness or irritation, you may be over-exfoliating. Stop using the product and talk to a dermatologist about how frequently you should exfoliate.

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How Do Chemical Exfoliants Work

Below, youll find all the answers to chemical exfoliation and how it differs from physical exfoliation. With so many different chemical exfoliants out there, it can be hard to keep track.

But were here to help you understand exactly how chemical exfoliation works. So you can be your own skincare expert and not just a skincare junkie.

See Related: What Are Chemical Exfoliants?

What Could Happen If You Over

Best Chemical Exfoliant for Sensitive Skin

Thankfully, its easy to notice when youre exfoliating too much or not enough.

Signs of under-exfoliation include a rough texture, dull complexion, and a feeling that your skin care products are no longer working due to a buildup of dead skin.

Over-exfoliation commonly takes the form of irritation, such as inflammation and dryness. You may also notice breakouts and peeling.

If you experience any of the above, stop exfoliating until your skin has fully healed.

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Who Can Use Them And When

Given their chemical composition and gentle exfoliating effects, virtually anyone can use PHAs for a brighter, clearer, and more youthful complexion. According to the aforementioned 2004 review, âPHAs have been found to be compatible with clinically sensitive skin, including rosacea and atopic dermatitis , and can be used after cosmetic procedures.â Furthermore, this hydroxy acid can benefit those with sensitive, blemish-prone skin, helping to clear breakouts and eliminate buildup without aggravating your complexion. Even if you use an AHA toner throughout the spring, summer, and fall, swapping for a gentler PHA might be wise in the winter, when dryness and irritation are more prevalent.

As with any type of exfoliating or cell-renewing ingredient, itâs best to follow the low-and-slow approach when incorporating a PHA into your routine. After determining if this product is suitable for your skin with a 24-hour patch test, we suggest starting with a PHA product three times a week. You can use PHA products morning or night, but we recommend starting with nighttime in order to avoid any unnecessary inflammation during sun exposure. After about a week, you can up your usage to every other day, and after two weeks, you can certainly use a PHA every day if you feel like your skin needs it.

How To Choose The Right Chemical Exfoliant For Your Skin Type

Image: ShutterstockOily, Acne-Prone SkinPeople with oily skin struggle with excess oil production which leads them to breakouts. Salicylic acid is best for people with oily Acne prone skin as it helps with clogged pores and clean them out. It removes excess oils, prevents blackheads/whiteheads and is a great exfoliant to remove dead skin cells. Salicylic acid can cause drying thus, it is advisable to always use a moisturizer afterwards and avoid over exfoliating.Dry SkinPeople with dry skin can benefit from chemical exfoliants that provide proper hydration and brightens dull skin. If you have dry skin opt for either Glycolic acid or Lactic acid. Both target dryness, pigmentation, dark spots and ageing.Sensitive skinIt can sometimes be quite daunting looking for products for sensitive skin as you must search products and ingredients that don’t irritate your skin. If you have sensitive skin go for PHAs . PHAs are supposedly less irritating than AHAs and BHAs as they have larger molecule size and are a gentler ingredient.Normal/Combination SkinNormal/combination skin types can try any exfoliant based on their skin concerns. You can opt for glycolic acid, hyaluronic acid or salicylic acid depending on how your skin is feeling.

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Origins Modern Friction Exfoliator

Exfoliating dry skin shouldnt mean friction that tears up your skin to the point of damaging your skin! However, with the wrong product that is exactly what can happen.

But dont worry, with the Origins Modern Friction Exfoliator, youll get the best of both, soft smooth skin with a soft and smooth application!

Gone are the days of sand-blasting your skin with coarse, chemical crystals. Now theres only age-smoothing exfoliation without irritation.

This cream exfoliator is rich in rice starch that rapidly removes sluggish cells, uneven patches and signs of skin damage and discolouration.

At the same time, the lemon oil kick starts the process of brightening up your face. It mops up buildup all over your skin to reveal a smooth and plump surface thats been there all along.

While the Aloe vera compounds keep your skin calm and comfy. That was a mouthful, but I think you may have got the point, this stuff is good!

Theres no ouch, extra steps or other complications. The before-and-afters are amazing with this product. If youre lucky, signs of fine lines appear to shrink in size.

Another thing I love about this exfoliator is that there is no musky cream smell, which is unfortunately not too uncommon with exfoliators.

Instead, be prepared for the relaxing aromas of Bergamot and Peppermint that will accompany you in getting back in control over your dry skin.


Farmacy Honeymoon Glow Aha Resurfacing Night Serum

Best Exfoliation for Dry Skin

Farmacy holds nothing back with this 3 in 1 multitasking night treatment. It comes with a whole host of ingredients to clarify, exfoliate, and hydrate your skin as you catch some zs. Youve got a 10% AHA acid blend to reduce signs of aging and bring baby softness and a gorgeous glow. Salicylic acid and hibiscus extract clarify and help clear your pores, while hyaluronic acid and a blend of honey balance the AHAs, soothe, and encourage extra hydration. For us, this is the best chemical exfoliant for dry skin.

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Skingredients Cleanse Off Mitt

For a one-stop shop that covers both face and body, look no further than the Skingredients Cleanse Off Mitt.

The bargain mitt, which will only set you back £6 is a microfibre pre-cleansing and makeup removal tool.

It makes quick work of lifting away all of the makeup, SPF, oil and pollution thats settled on your skin throughout the day.

It can even remove stubborn mascara without using any additional product, and you can also use the mitt in the shower to exfoliate your skin all over.

Buy now £6.00, Skingredients

Mizon Aha 8% Peeling Serum

Enjoy clear, smooth skin with Mizons AHA 8% Peeling serum. It has a blend of 8% glycolic acid and papaya enzymes. The combination of these two power ingredients revitalizes the skins texture, evens tone and texture, and reduces the appearance of dark sports. Additionally, theres aloe, panthenol, and portulaca oleracea extract, which calms, adds moisture and acts as anti-inflammatories. The results of which are smooth, firm skin.

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The Inkey List 10% Lactic Acid

An alternative to The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10%, The Inkey List also made a gentle chemical exfoliator with dry skin in mind. It combines 10% lactic acid with 1% hyaluronic acid for an intense exfoliation, yet delicate enough for daily use. Theres no clear-cut way of deciding which one is better between The Ordinary and The Inkey List, as its more a matter of personal preference.

If You Have Combination Skin

The Best Chemical Exfoliants You Need to Try for Your Skin ...

Combination skin requires the best of both worlds. Go for a serum containing salicylic acid for an anti-inflammatory exfoliating effect.

Caudalies Vinopure Skin Perfecting Serum has a lightweight gel texture that wont clog pores or dry skin out.

Shop for Caudalies Vinopure Skin Perfecting Serum online.

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Chemical Exfoliants For Oily Skin

People with oily skin continuously struggle with overproduction of oil which leads to clogged pores. This causes blackheads, whiteheads, and acne! Salicylic acid has to be the best chemical exfoliator for oily skin types.

It is oil-soluble and goes deep inside your pores to take out the trapped oil and dirt and keeps your pores clean. This acid, for example, The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Solution, reduces oil-production and is also anti-inflammatory so it makes inflamed acne go away faster. You can either opt for a leave-on salicylic acid serum/toner or use a salicylic acid facewash for daily mild exfoliation.

Best Picks

Related:The Ordinary Skincare Routine For Oily, Acne-Prone Skin

Best Exfoliators For Dry Skin: 2022 Picks

Posted on January 18, 2022

Modified on May 19, 2022

Posted on January 18, 2022

Modified on May 19, 2022

Dry skin, especially in the winter, can need a little extra love as far as a skincare routine. Part of that routine should definitely include exfoliation. I know it can be an easy step to skip since you wont be doing it daily. But it is such an important and effective step that it will really up your skincare game. I am going to share with you everything you need to know about exfoliation plus the best exfoliators for dry skin.

Affiliate Disclosure: I do have affiliate links in this blog post. If you purchase something from my link, I will receive a small commission from the sale. This comes at no cost to you, but is paid by the company. I do not take becoming an affiliate with any company lightly. If I am, its because I believe in the company and their product.

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Best Exfoliator For Dry Skin Face

Exfoliation is an effective method for treating many different skincare concerns, and it can bring a host of benefits for your face and body. With different skin types, its important that we know how to take care of our own, and that were able to personalise our routines. If you want to find out about the best exfoliator for dry skin, and how to use it, read on.


  • Final thoughts
  • Do You Need To Exfoliate Dry Skin

    Gentle chemical exfoliating acid is for Sensitive Skin | Lakisha Adams #SHORTS

    Often, exfoliation is a treatment pushed for those who are struggling with acne or uneven skin texture, as well as oily skin, so do you still need to exfoliate dry skin? While the answer is specific to your skin in particular, the general rule nis that yes, those with dry skin can still benefit from exfoliation, however the process is slightly different than for those with oily skin.

    Firstly, its true that dry skin tends to be more fragile and sensitive, being more vulnerable to damage as it doesnt have a secure moisture barrier. However, this doesnt mean you cant exfoliate your skin if its dry, and you just need to take extra care, as well see later.

    Its worth knowing that exfoliation can still provide plenty of benefits for those with dry skin and may even aid with dryness.

    Also read: Does Exfoliating Help with Acne?

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