Your Body Needs
Exfoliation

It feels great and does wonders for your skin

Men exfoliating skin illustration Men exfoliating skin illustration

It’s a step that most men leave out of their grooming regimens, but if you're not exfoliating you're really missing out. Because your body is literally covered in dead skin cells. It's gross, but it's true. We're always shedding and growing new skin cells. In fact, our skin completely regenerates itself approximately every 27 days. So if you don't get rid of the dead skin cells, they just hang onto you and cause problems. Like what? How about breakouts, scaly patches, hair loss and cracked gnarly feet? That's why it's important to exfoliate. Not just your face but every part of your body.

Sofie Pavitt, the in-demand New York aesthetician, says we should be doing it year round, but that exfoliation is particularly effective in the winter months. “I love to ramp up exfoliation during the colder months to reduce dryness and flaky winter skin,” says Pavitt. “You want to dissolve the bonds between dead skin and the healthy skin underneath—that's the key.” Think of it as shedding your dead weight. You'll look and feel better as soon as you do. We've put together a game plan for a full-body exfoliation, from top to bottom, along with how often you should ideally be doing it.

Advertisement

How to Exfoliate
Your Whole Body

Your Face

Frequency:

Two to three times a week

If you really want to see improvement in the texture and clarity of your skin, start exfoliating your face. By clearing away the dead skin cells, you uncover the fresh, healthy ones underneath while kickstarting the cell renewal process. That all translates to clearer, brighter, smoother skin—and that's just what you want. Right now, we're alternating between Goop's citrusy scrub (packed with vitamin C, omega acids and soothing squalane) and Grown Alchemist's scrub-free exfoliant (which is suitable for use around the eyes and even the most sensitive skin).

Goop Beauty Exfoliating Jelly Cleanser

Exfoliating jelly cleanser,
$28 by Goop Beauty

Grown Alchemist Granule-Free Enzyme Exfoliant

Granule-free enzyme exfoliant,
$69 by Grown Alchemist

Your Lips

Frequency:

As needed

Sephora Peppermint Lip Scrub

Peppermint lip scrub,
$7 by Sephora

Blame it on subzero temperatures, a sunburn or just general dryness, but peeling lips are annoying—and frankly, unattractive. A gentle lip scrub will safely slough away the dead skin while moisturizing the sensitive skin underneath. It's basically a gritty lip balm, so apply and rub your lips together until smooth.

Sephora Peppermint Lip Scrub

Peppermint lip scrub,
$7 by Sephora

The Scalp

Frequency:

Twice a week, or whenever you shampoo

FREATECH Silicone Massager Brush

Silicone massager brush,
$6.99 by FREATECH

Maybe you're seeing some flakes or perhaps your hair has been feeling oily and a little dull. That's what dry skin and product buildup can do to your scalp. On the flip side, exfoliating regularly can stimulate circulation in the hair follicles to help hair grow naturally thicker and shinier. You could use a dedicated scalp scrub or just get one of these massaging brushes and go to town on your scalp.

FREATECH Silicone Massager Brush

Silicone massager brush,
$6.99 by FREATECH

Your Knees/Elbows

Frequency:

Daily or as needed

Soft Services Carea Cream Lotion

Carea cream lotion,
$40 by Soft Services

Your knees and elbows are areas where dry, dead skin tends to accumulate. Keep them smooth and hydrated by applying a daily body lotion and making sure to really rub it into these areas. This one, in particular, both moisturizes and mildly exfoliates. With regular use, bumpy texture and persistent dryness is alleviated.

Soft Services Carea Cream Lotion

Carea cream lotion,
$40 by Soft Services

Overall Body

Frequency:

Every other day

Keep itchy skin and ingrown hairs at bay by sudsing up in the shower with a dual-action exfoliator. A gentle trio of glycolic, lactic and salicylic acids work together with natural pumice and bamboo charcoal to soften rough skin without irritation. You can also use this ingenious oversized exfoliating wash cloth from Japan with your standard soap or body wash to remove dead skin from your shoulders, back, arms and legs.

Necessaire Body Exfoliator Scrub

Body exfoliator scrub,
$30 by Nécessaire

Goshi Exfoliating Shower Towel

Exfoliating shower towel,
$14.99 by Goshi

Your Feet

Frequency:

Once a week

PriTech Electric Callus Remover

Electric callus remover,
$25.99 by PriTech

Even men who take great pride in their appearance will often neglect their feet. Dry skin is extremely common, but if left untreated, it can lead to painful cracks in the skin or hardened calluses. Use your body scrub to alleviate scaliness around the ankles and then use a powered file to buff away dry skin and calluses. Trust us, grinding away at the dry patches is as satisfying as popping a zit, but it's actually good for you. Be sure to follow it up with a lotion to hydrate your freshly scrubbed feet.

PriTech Electric Callus Remover

Electric callus remover,
$25.99 by PriTech

Best Practices

The best time to use a scrub is in the shower. The steam will help open up your pores (and it makes clean up a whole lot easier). You want to massage the product into skin with small circles, like you’re waxing a car.

NOTE: Items featured in this story are independently selected by the editorial team. Purchasing via our links may earn Valet. a portion of the sale, which helps fund our editorial mission.

The Smart Way
to Start Your Day

The Daily Valet. is your cheat sheet to what you need to know right now. Never feel caught off guard again.

More on
Skin Care

Advertisement