One of the number one lessons taught in skincare 101, next to the need for a daily moisturizer with SPF, is the importance of exfoliating regularly (two to three times a week is the recommended amount for maximum benefits). Exfoliants buff away dulling buildup of dead skin cells to reveal newer skin. In doing so, exfoliating helps reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation, age or sun spots and fine lines and wrinkles. It’s similar to the idea of sanding down a wooden surface to a smooth finish and later priming it to be more receptive to whatever stains or paint you choose to add on top. A facial scrub is a means of renewing the skin for a brighter, smoother complexion.
We scrub our bodies from head to toe; we exfoliate around the center and contours of the face – but what about the eyes? There is no doubt that the skin around the eyes is much thinner and therefore more delicate than the rest of our skin. Never tug, never pull, always be gentle, we are told, and rightfully so.
Yet even so, you should always take the time to exfoliate around the eyes. The same rules apply to any area of skin; it is simply a matter of using different tools.
Why We Use Acid Serums For The Eye Area
Instead of facial scrubs, which are grainy by nature and will inevitably tug and irritate that sensitive area, we use acid serums. It isn’t as intimidating or harsh as it sounds. These concentrated serums are neither as abrasive nor aggressive, but are just as effective – if not more – than any traditional exfoliants.
Invest in serums with Glycolic Acid, an Alpha Hydroxy Acid derived from sugar cane. Like its fruit extract counterparts, it refreshes and stimulates the skin, essentially “dissolving away” any dulling buildup to help promote cell turnover. Its call to fame, however, lies in a number of standout properties: Glycolic Acid is known for its ability to improve texture, reduce fine lines and discoloration to rejuvenate your overall complexion. Newer, smoother skin is unveiled in the process, and brown spots and fine lines are diminished over time.
For an added antioxidant and anti-aging boost that also helps brighten dark under eye circles, interchange your Glycolic Acid based serum with one concentrated with Vitamin C. Vitamin C is also a viable alternative to skin types sensitive to Glycolic Acid.
Apply the serum as you would an eye cream. A little goes a long way; squeeze just one to two drops onto your ring fingers. Pat the serum along the bone under the eyes, tapping gently as you trace along, a little above the bone (to avoid irritation, however, avoid going too close to the lash line), and at the outer corners (to target crow’s feet).
After you’ve given the product a few minutes to sink into the skin, follow with your favorite eye cream. The serum will have prepared your skin to better absorb the cream, similar to the way a primer would allow newly sanded wood to grip onto the paint. Look for formulas that complement the Glycolic Acid or Vitamin C serum by hydrating the eye area while locking in moisture. Creams containing Hyaluronic Acid, a greaseless, hydrating ingredient that retains water at the cellular level of the skin to prevent dehydration and moisture loss, and Collagen, another ingredient with similar moisture-retaining capabilities that also enhances the softness and smoothness of the skin, are ideal. The presence of one or both, in conjunction with an acid serum, make for a brightening and plumping effect that results in a more youthful look to the under eye area.
Make it an integral part of your evening skincare routine and exfoliate the under eye area every other day. See the difference and feel the results: that’s the beauty of those few extra minutes or so spent on your skin.
You deserve it.
This is a guest post by Kim Yang who is a blogger, sometimes freelance writer and full-time business school and journalism student. Previously the fashion editorial intern for two boutique magazines and now writing for Mario Badescu Skin Care.