If there were a magic wand for all of your skin-care woes, it might look something like a microdermabrasion device. The wand-like instrument behind the popular treatment exfoliates the outer layer of skin and helps with just about everything (acne, hyperpigmentation, collagen production, et cetera.) And while the best microdermabrasion treatments will be done by a board-certified dermatologist, that's not always realistic, since sessions tend to be pricey. That's where investing in one of the best microdermabrasion scrubs comes in.
Microdermabrasion products that can be used at home tend to use a lower concentration of the active ingredients used by professionals, so while their results won't be as drastic, they still help smooth and brighten your complexion. Whether you choose an exfoliating scrub or a device to remove dead skin cells, these microdermabrasion products use a physical or chemical exfoliator (or a combination of both) to get the job done. Physical exfoliators will be fine, granular substances, like crystals or silica, and they help remove those outer layers of dead skin cells to brighten skin. Chemical exfoliators deliver the same result, but they work by dissolving the dead skin cells, so it is often gentler. They most commonly appear in the form of alpha hydroxy acids (also known as AHAs, which include glycolic acid and lactic acid), and beta hydroxy acids (or BHAs, like salicylic acid). AHAs are more helpful for skin rejuvenation, while BHAs are the acid of choice among acne-prone skin types because they can cut through the oil that clogs pores and causes breakouts.
Of course, if you overdo it, you can end up irritating your skin, which is why there are a few rules to remember. First, if you have sensitive skin, avoid any at-home microdermabrasion scrubs that use larger physical exfoliators, like walnut shells or apricot kernels, which might be too harsh. Instead, look for finer physical exfoliators, such as minerals like silica or volcanic pumice, which are gentler. You also don't want to use your at-home treatment too often. Over-exfoliating can derail your skin-care goals and cause irritation in the form of redness and dryness. Always follow the product's instructions and start out slow. For example, if an exfoliating scrub says it can be used twice weekly, begin with once a week at first and build your way up to the recommended usage over time. And when in doubt, always consult with a dermatologist to figure out what's right for your skin and specific goals.
And now, scroll on for five of the best microdermabrasion scrubs for at-home use.
1. A Microdermabrasion Scrub Straight From The Spa
Steal a microdermabrasion scrub straight from the spa with the Bliss Micro Magic Skin-Renewing Microdermabrasion Scrub. The calming rosemary and mint-scented scrub is used in Bliss spas and can now be used right at your sink to exfoliate and refresh your skin at home. Volcanic pumice gently sloughs away dead skin cells as it improves circulation while you massage it. The scrub also contains kaolin clay to absorb excess oil and draw out toxins for a deeper clean. And, if you're worried about being left with dry skin, Bliss has you covered with a blend of ingredients like pro-vitamin B5, jojoba seed oil, and aloe leaf juice, which work to moisturize and soften skin. Expect squeaky clean, healthy-feeling skin that looks brighter and refreshed.
2. The Best Microdermabrasion Scrub For Acne
If your focus is on treating breakouts and fading unwanted scars, the Nip+Fab Glycolic Scrub was created with these specific skin concerns in mind. The chemical exfoliator uses 3% glycolic acid to resurface and even out skin to give it a softer, smoother texture. Then, the salicylic acid in the formula gets to work by dissolving the dead skin and oil that gets trapped in your pores and causes blackheads and pimples. Last, this scrub has a refreshing, grapefruit scent that'll invigorate both your skin and mind.
3. The Best Microdermabrasion Scrub For Glowing Skin
For an overall brightening boost, you'll want a vitamin C-rich microdermabrasion scrub like this one from The Body Shop. This scrub uses crushed garnet stones to exfoliate away dead skin cells that might be making your skin look dull. To further brighten skin, the brand included camu camu berry in the formula. The Body Shop notes that the ingredient contains 20 times more vitamin C than an orange, and it helps fade hyperpigmentation and protect skin from future environmental damage. Then, to leave your skin smooth and hydrated, the brand included glycerin, sweet almond oil, and shea butter in the formula.
4. The Best At-Home Microdermabrasion Peel
If you're a pro when it comes to at-home microdermabrasion, this two-part system combines physical and chemical exfoliators to deliver serious results. Designed to be used once weekly, the first step of Philosophy's microdermabrasion kit is a physical exfoliator that contains vitamin C and peptide resurfacing crystals, which you apply all-over in circular motions, kind of like a mask. The second step comprises a gel that's infused with lactic and salicylic acids, which is applied over the first step, creating a light foam on your face. While you let it sit for two to three minutes, the lactic and salicylic acids help shed dead skin cells and deep clean pores to create a clearer, smoother, more even-looking complexion.
5. The Best Drugstore Microdermabrasion System
For the best cheap microdermabrasion system, this Neutrogena set gets Amazon customers' seal of approval with over 1,500 positive reviews. As an alternative to your average scrub, Neutrogena created an at-home device that does all the work for you. The battery-operated applicator works with the included microdermabrasion puffs, which are made with exfoliating crystals and purifying cleansing ingredients. As the device works, it delivers massaging micro-vibrations that assist with cellular turnover to boost collagen production in your skin. The Neutrogena Microdermabrasion System comes with everything you need to get started, including batteries and 12 single-use puffs for a month's worth treatments (and can be purchased separately when you need to restock).
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