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Dove exfoliating body polish

How to exfoliate your skin safely for each skin type

When it comes to exfoliating your body, it can be tempting to get scrub-happy. After all, who doesn’t want silky-smooth skin 24/7? But before you reach for the exfoliator, it’s worth considering your skin type, since it might mean adjusting your approach a little bit. Read on to learn how to exfoliate your body depending on your skin type and the kind of products your skin will respond to the best. Smooth, radiant skin that feels soft to the touch is within reach (and yes, you’ll wish you started doing this sooner).




Eudermic skin 

If your skin type is ‘normal’ (that’s ‘eudermic’ skin to the experts) then exfoliating regularly is a no-brainer to keep it looking and feeling healthy. If you’re a fan of self tanners, exfoliating 24 hours before application helps them last longer, as well as ensuring a smooth, even application. Generally, exfoliating three to four times a week is optimum, but some products – like Dove Gentle Exfoliating Body Wash with Sea Minerals – are gentle enough to use every day while still lightly buffing away that top layer of skin. Use like a normal cleanser, rubbing gently in circular motions on the arms, legs and back, paying special attention to any areas that feel especially rough or bumpy. 

Dry skin 

Skin that often feels dry? It’s tempting to avoid exfoliation altogether for fear of drying out your skin more, but regular exfoliation actually means scrubbing away that dry top skin layer, allowing moisturizers to penetrate more easily. The result? Skin feels immediately softer and more hydrated, especially if you use a moisture-packed exfoliator like Dove Colloidal Oatmeal & Calendula Oil Gentle Exfoliating Body Polish (enriched with ¼ moisturizing cream for extra hydration). In the shower or bath, apply a generous scoop to skin and massage all over using circular motions. Rinse to reveal glowing, visibly hydrated skin. 

Sensitive skin

The good news? Those with sensitive skin can exfoliate, you just need to be smart about the product. Start by choosing gentle, non-irritating formulas and be mindful of any irritation or redness on skin, as this is an immediate sign to hit the brakes. 

Proving that exfoliation doesn’t need to be rough, Dove Gentle Exfoliating Beauty Bar is enriched with exfoliating beads to lightly buff away dull-looking dead skin cells. Free from parabens and sulfate cleansers, the pH-balanced formula contains the mildest bar cleansers and ¼ moisturizing cream to help retain your skin’s moisture. Use in place of your regular soap or body cleanser and enjoy radiant skin. 

Oily skin 

Generally, oily skin can tolerate more exfoliation than other skin types and if you’re prone to clogged pores or pimples on your body, regular exfoliation can be a real help. Start by trading your daily body wash for an exfoliating formula like our Body Love Exfoliate Away Body Cleanser [RELEASED 2023] which gently buffs and smooths skin as you wash. 

Be sure to incorporate Dove Exfoliating Body Polish into your shower or bath routine, too (the indulgent rich, whipped formula is ultra-caring to skin so it’s safe to use 3-4 times a week, if you want). And because our Body Polishes are available in three strengths, you can tailor your regime to fit your exact skin needs. For oilier skin types, try starting with a ‘moderate’ polish, before moving onto ‘deep’ exfoliation. 

One final word of advice? By exfoliating away that dull top layer of dead skin cells, skin becomes much more sensitive to sunlight. So if you’re planning on showing off your new silky-smooth limbs (and who could blame you?) be sure to apply plenty of SPF.

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