How To Use A Facial Scrub

Renee Rouleau's mint buffing beads with fuzzy jars behind

Facial scrubs are an essential part of a skin care routine. What is a facial scrub? A facial scrub is usually a cream-based product that contains little exfoliating pieces that when massaged across the skin help smooth the skin by physically lifting off dry, dead skin cells. They’ve been around for many, many years and while the formulas have changed a bit, they are still a necessity in your skin care routine.

Read: Exfoliation Will Give You Beautiful Skin

For starters, before you purchase a facial scrub, it is important that you choose one that will be helpful and not harmful to the skin. This is the time that natural is not better. A synthetically made grain is far superior to any of the naturally made grains. Avoid the ingredients apricot kernels, or natural seeds/shells, which may cause irritation – especially for sensitive and acne prone skin. Instead, choose formulas that use round jojoba beads, aluminum oxide (used in microdermabrasion crystals) or polyethylene grains. The other ones have sharp edges, these are perfectly round so they perform a gently rolling action…

Because a facial scrub is an added step above and beyond a basic cleanser-toner-moisturizer routine, it often gets neglected. Clients will tell me that they use it only when they remember to. An easy way to ensure it gets used and to reap the benefits is keep it in the shower and use it in place of your morning cleanser two to three times a week. Since most scrubs come in a creamy base, it will naturally have cleansing agents in it.

Apply it to slightly damp skin and massage in a circular motion to the entire face for 60 seconds. The key to getting the best results with a facial scrub is not to press hard on the skin, as this will cause irritation, even when using round grain scrubs. If you feel like your skin can use more exfoliation, it’s better to use it longer (90 seconds) than to apply extra pressure. Rinse off and proceed with toner, serum and moisturizer.

If you have active acne where the infection of the blemish is still present, I would suggest avoiding that area as it may cause more irritation to this inflamed area. Instead for exfoliation use an exfoliant with salicylic acid like BHA Clarifying Serum.

Facial scrubs also work very well to keep the skin on the neck smooth to make exfoliation easier. When exfoliating, make sure to look upwards so the skin on the neck is nice and taut, which will make for easier use.

Read: Must-Have Skin Care Ingredients For Those Who Exfoliate Regularly

A facial scrub is a critical part of a skin care routine. It is important to follow these steps to ensure you’re getting the best results!

Read: Is The Clarisonic Brush Harmful Or Helpful To The Skin?

Which skin care products are best for you? See our nine skin types or take the Skin Type Quiz and get products recommended.

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Disclaimer: Content found on and, including text, images, audio, or other formats were created for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website or blog.

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