How To Repair Your Skin After Over-Exfoliating

When putting together a proper skincare routine, how many times have you been told to be careful with how much you exfoliate? While exfoliating is a key part of looking after your skin, it can be easy to overdo it. Clinique explains that exfoliating can help get rid of dead skin cells that are left on your skin by dissolving the bond between them. Along with dead skin cells, exfoliating helps remove any dirt stuck in the pores. Depending on your skin, you might need to exfoliate more or less than others. However, it's not uncommon to realize that you may have overdone it with the exfoliating.


While there are many benefits that come with exfoliating your skin, there's a reason why experts want consumers to be careful with this part of their routine. Over-exfoliating can result in various types of damage and pain to your skin, per Healthline. This can result in even more serious skin issues if left untreated. If you find yourself with damaged skin after over-exfoliating, you will need to focus on repairing the skin before exfoliating once again.

Signs your skin is over-exfoliated

It can be challenging to tell if your skin is over-exfoliated or if you are suffering from another issue. People tend to show different signs of over-exfoliating, depending on their skin. Beauty Med explains that one of the most common signs of over-exfoliating is irritation, which often shows up through red patches. While it's normal for your skin to get red after exfoliating, it should be a cause for concern if the redness does not subdue or lasts for several days. Another sign is an increase in acne breakouts. Exfoliating is often carried out to relieve acne; it should not cause a significant breakout. If you notice more acne breakouts after various uses, your skin is most likely irritated.


The Klog adds that another sign of over-exfoliating could be increased dryness in the skin. This dryness will cause peeling and flaking in problem areas. The more you overdo it with the exfoliation, the drier your skin will get. Consequently, dry skin can in turn result in excess oil production, which leads to a shiny appearance of the skin. 

Fixing over-exfoliated skin

Repairing over-exfoliated skin can be tedious, but it's necessary to get your skin back to being healthy. Eight Saints Skincare recommends immediately stopping any type of exfoliating for at least a week, to give your skin a healthy break and room to repair. Over-exfoliating the skin most likely has stripped your skin of vital moisture, which will be necessary to reintroduce to the skin. To this end, hydrating products are essential. Hyaluronic acid will help add much-needed hydration back to the skin while face oils will help heal the skin barrier and lock in that moisture.


Lionesse recommends also lowering the intensity of your other skincare products while your skin heals. This step includes substituting your stronger cleanser with potent ingredients for a mild cleanser, and removing intense ingredients like retinol from your routine. Also, you want to ensure you are using SPF daily as your skin repairs. SPF is essential on any day, but when your skin is over-exfoliated, it's at its most vulnerable state.