Best Facial Exfoliator For All Skin Types

Best Facial Exfoliator

Exfoliating helps you remove dead skin cells from the skin surface using a chemical, granular substance, or exfoliation tool. The skin naturally sheds its dead skin cells to make room for new cells every 30 days. Sometimes, dead cells will not shed leading to dry, flaky patches and clogged pores. You can prevent this by exfoliating your skin.

When you exfoliate periodically, it will help you prevent clogged pores, resulting in fewer breakouts. Long-term exfoliating will increase collagen production – the key to glowing and vibrant skin. Collagen also promotes skin elasticity and minimizes the appearance of fine lines and skin sagging.

COMPS – Facial Exfoliators


Paula's Choice - Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub

Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub & Face Exfoliator

Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

BrandPaula's Choice Aveeno Neutrogena Era OrganicsCetaphil
Size 04 Ounces05 Ounces2.6 Fl Ounces2 Ounces

6 Fl. Ounces(2 packs combo)

Ideal ForIt is the best skin formula for oily, sensitive, dry, acne-prone, aging, and delicate skinAveeno positively radiant skin brightening exfoliating daily facial scrub is a suitable solution for sensitive skin.Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator is best for all skin types and tones.Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub & Face Exfoliator is a suitable solution for all skin types, especially for dull and dry skin.Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub is the perfect exfoliating solution for all skin types, especially good for sensitive skin.

Paula's Choice - Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub

Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub & Face Exfoliator

Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

Products Review

Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Product description

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant – this gentle leave-on exfoliant with salicylic acid quickly unclogs your pores, smooths all age marks and wrinkles, and brightens and evens out skin tone.
  • This product dramatically improves your skin texture and gives you radiant and even-toned skin. 
  • Beta hydroxy acid (salicylic acid) helps your skin shed extra layers while unclogging and clearing pores.
  • This unique and non-abrasive formula is gentle enough for daily use on all skin types.
  • Paula’s Choice facial exfoliants are more suitable for the delicate skin of the face and neck than an abrasive face scrub that can cause micro-tears. 
  • The BHA leave-on exfoliator delivers more hydration to your skin, exfoliates directly inside the pore, and improves how the pore works.

Key ingredients

  • Salicylic Acid⁠: Salicylic acid can enter the deep layer of your skin to do its job. It exfoliates dead skin and targets acne, especially blackheads and whiteheads. Once salicylic acid penetrates the skin, it dissolves all skin debris that clogs pores. It acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and helps red, inflamed pimples and pustules disappear faster. Salicylic acid cleans the excess oil from pores and reduces excess oil production. Since it keeps your pores clean and unclogged, it prevents future whiteheads and blackheads formation, and its anti-inflammatory properties make it a prime ingredient for those with psoriasis.
  • Methylpropanediol⁠: Methylpropanediol, a synthetic ingredient, works as a solvent. It will enhance the absorption of ingredients like salicylic acid for better penetration and efficacy. It has hydrating properties that leave your skin smooth and gives a dewy finish to the skin.
  • Green Tea⁠: Green tea works directly as a skin toner and even out the skin’s appearance. Tannins in green tea shrink the pores to ensure that they clog less often. It also regulates sebum production and removes excess oil on the skin surface. It plays a vital role in acne treatment and helps remove blackheads and breakouts without serious side effects.
  • BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acid)⁠: BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acid),⁠ a super cool ingredient, is capable of cutting through excess oil and exfoliating deep within your pores to remove blockages. It is perfect for combination and oily skin for balancing oil. It will flush out the follicular wall and clear bacteria, dead skin cells, and debris.

List of all ingredients

Water⁠, Methylpropanediol⁠, Butylene Glycol⁠, Salicylic Acid⁠, Camellia Oleifera⁠, Polysorbate 20⁠, Tetrasodium EDTA⁠, Sodium Hydroxide⁠.

Instructions to use

  • Gently apply it to your entire face and neck (including the eye) using fingers or a cotton pad. 
  • Avoid lash lines and eyelids when applying this to your face. 
  • Try this product after cleansing and toning. 
  • Start to use this product by applying it every other day. Check how your skin responds, and use it up to twice daily.
  • When you use it during the daytime, finish with SPF 30+. 
  • At night time, you can follow the routine.

Results and reviews

91% of users noticed healthier skin after using this. Around 90% of users saw an enhancement in their skin texture, and almost 82% noticed smaller pores.


Some people may have an allergy to salicylic acid. So check with your physician before starting this product and do a patch test.

Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub

Product Description

  • Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub reveals your brighter and more radiant skin. 
  • Ingredients like pure and radiance-boosting soy extract meet naturally derived granules and gently exfoliate, cleanse and clear your skin.
  • Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub will enhance your natural radiance and give you a lit-from-within glow.

Key Ingredients

  • Soy: Soybeans include the properties to keep your skin full of moisture and not greasy. It will keep your skin looking young and healthy by reducing signs of aging. The Vitamin E in soy is good for the skin and gives you radiance. Soy can also make your skin appear firmer and younger if you have puffy or tired-looking skin by promoting collagen production (an essential part of skin elasticity). Soybeans help us reduce the appearance of sun damage, age spots, and scars from sunburns. It also reduces redness or patches caused by rosacea or allergies. Lecithin in the soy hydrates and repairs your skin surfaces with its fatty acid content.
  • Jojoba Oil: Jojoba oil contains more antioxidants like vitamins A and E and omega-6 fatty acids, the essential components of the skin barrier. It acts as a humectant and retains skin moisture. Its soothing properties will calm your dry and irritated skin. The potent antioxidant Vitamin E in jojoba oil helps your skin defend itself against free radicals that cause premature aging and skin damage.
  • Castor Oil: Castor oil contains the antioxidants that prevent wrinkles by fighting against free radicals in your body. Free radicals accelerate the aging process in your body by making wrinkles appear sooner. Castor oil, with its antibacterial properties, fights against acne by killing bacteria that clog pores and lead to acne. With its anti-inflammatory properties, castor oil reduces swelling, puffiness, and the size of inflamed pimples and eye bags. The moisturizing property of castor oil keeps your skin looking young, shiny, and healthy and reduces peeling, and prevents dry lips.

List of all ingredients

Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Glycerin, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, PEG-16 Soy Sterol, Lauryl Glucoside, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Glycol Distearate, Phenoxyethanol, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Butylene Glycol, Methylparaben, Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil, Laureth-4, Fragrance, Tetrasodium EDTA, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Protein, Sodium Hydroxide, Citric Acid.

How to use it?

  • First, moisten your face.
  • Take a little amount in your hand and gently massage the scrub in a circular motion.
  • Rinse it thoroughly with lukewarm water, not with hot water.
  • Use this scrub twice a day (AM and PM) for better results.

Reviews and results

Many users reported that this scrub improved the brightness and smoothness of their skin. This dermatologist-tested soy complex improved the skin tone of many users (from reviews of various shopping portals).


This exfoliator scrub is for external use only. Avoid any contact with the eyes, and if it occurs, flush with water immediately. Always keep this out of reach of children to avoid harmful effects.

Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

Product description

  • This Neutrogena formula exfoliates your skin and removes all skin aging marks and dullness.
  • The formula includes naturally-derived skin smoothers glycolic and mandelic AHAs.
  • It will cleanse away all the dirt, oil, grime, impurities, and bacteria from your face.
  • This gentle and resultful exfoliator smooths and brightens your skin.
  • You can use it as a daily skin resurfacing face cleanser.
  • The most notable thing in this product is the proprietary Neurogena Accelerated Brightening Complex formula.
  • It will polish your skin for a brighter complexion and reduce the appearance of dark spots and pores.

Key ingredients

  • Glycolic acid: Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that helps you with anti-aging, hyperpigmentation, dryness, and acne. The keratolytic properties of glycolic acid exfoliate the dead skin cells from your skin surface. It reduces existing fine lines and wrinkles, fades hyperpigmentation, and clears acne. Generally, glycolic acid is a humectant that has the chemical ability to draw moisture to itself. Thus, it draws moisture to the exfoliated skin and prevents new fine lines and wrinkles. Glycolic acid can also improve the penetration of other skincare ingredients. It works well on your face and helps you exfoliate the skin, speed up cell turnover, and boost collagen production. This acid can clear pores, improve skin tone, smooth fine wrinkles, hydrate skin, and fade away dark patches and sun damage to give you a youthful appearance.
  • Mandelic acid: Mandelic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that helps your skin reduce acne, fine lines, and wrinkles and improve the appearance of uneven skin. Our skin renewal slows down with aging, causing the skin to lose elasticity, discolor, and form wrinkles and fine lines. The exfoliants like AHAs help you loosen the top layer of older skin cells and thus, improve the skin’s overall appearance by reducing visible age signs. 

List of all ingredients

Water, Cellulose, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycerin, PPG-15 Stearyl Ether, Mandelic Acid, Polysorbate 60, Glycolic Acid, Steareth-21, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Sodium Hydroxide, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Xanthan Gum, Fragrance, Disodium EDTA, Tocopheryl Acetate, Benzyl SalicylateCitronellol.

How to use it?

  • You can use this Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Micro Polish one to three times per week.
  • First, wet your face, then take this product in your hands and gently massage it in a circular motion.
  • Rinse it thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry.
  • And enjoy more radiant skin immediately.

Results and reviews

Users with rosacea reported that this product did not irritate their skin. Some other users reviewed that they noticed some improvement in their dull skin tone and dark spots around the mouth area. Most users are ready to recommend this product to their friend circle as they find effective results.


Glycolic acid may irritate some skin types when you use it daily. So start by applying it three times a week, and then increase it step by step. Also, glycolic can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. So it is essential to use sunscreen outdoors. 

Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub and Face Exfoliator

Product description

  • Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub is the best facial scrub for dull, dry, and sensitive skin. 
  • This scrub helps your skin remove stubborn blackheads, exfoliate dull and dead skin cells, cleanse and minimize pores, and moisturize to the base of your skin with each wash.
  • You can see many harsh scrubs in the market that tear and damage your skin. But this microdermabrasion sugar scrub gently loosens dirt, grime, and other dull skin cells while nourishing your cells and leaving more healthy and beautiful-looking skin. 
  • You can get a softer and more youthful look in a few minutes.
  • This premium face and body scrub remove daily build-up so your face can replenish and look radiant again. 
  • With this microdermabrasion at home, you can gently polish away damaged skin, blackheads, and stretch marks, and it is a powerful acne scar treatment that irritates your skin less than chemical peel facials.
  • You can use this scrub as a facial mask by leaving it on your face for some time that balances your skin tone and reduces fine lines, wrinkles, and age spots. 
  • In this process, your skin will soak up vitamin and mineral nourishing agents to help restore each skin cell.
  • The highest quality botanical skincare ingredients like organic aloe vera, manuka honey, walnut, and Vitamin C protect your skin from free radicals and premature aging.

Key ingredients

  • Manuka honey: The unique blend of manuka honey, straight from New Zealand, includes vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It will hydrate, nourish, soothe and protect your skin.
  • Aloe vera: Aloe vera naturally contains vitamins A, C, B, and E and minerals like Zinc, Calcium, Magnesium, and Copper, plus enzymes essential for all living organisms. It will do deep hydration, calm your irritated skin, and increase recovery for softer-looking skin.
  • Sunflower oil: Sunflower oil maintains the skin’s barrier and prevents the skin from losing moisture to give more supple-looking skin.
  • Walnut shell: This scrub uses walnut shells in place of microbeads, which are bad for the environment. They act as an excellent natural exfoliator and remove old, dead skin cells, leaving them soft, smooth-looking skin.
  • Orange oil: Orange oil is the scenting agent in this scrub in place of other toxic smelly fragrances. It is high in vitamin C that has natural anti-aging properties.
  • Cerami extract: Cerami, an Australian flower, has antimicrobial, anti-irritation, and cellular regeneration properties. It is more effective than aspirin as an analgesic for itch relief and helps to increase cell growth by up to 50%.

List of all ingredients

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Emulsifying Wax, Glycerol, Juglans Regia (Walnut) Shell Powder, Citrus Sinensis (Orange) Oil, Leptospermum Scoparium (Manuka) Mel, Centipeda Cunninghamii (Cehami) Extract, DL-Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Lecithin, Oat Amino Protein, Phenoxyethanol & Ethylhexylglycerin, Behentrimonium Methosulfate & Cetearyl Alcohol. 

How to use it?

  • You do not need any microdermabrasion machine to use this. 
  • Use this scrub at least 2-3 times a week by gently massaging it over the skin for 1-2 minutes and rinse. 
  • If you are using this as an anti-aging mask, apply it to dry skin, leave for 5-10 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly.

Results and reviews

People affected by other skincare products ( including harmful toxins ) reported that this plant-based ingredient and walnut shells gently exfoliated their skin without harming it. 


Discontinue the usage and see your physician if any irritation occurs. Do a patch test before starting. If you use any scrub brush or microdermabrasion machine for scrubbing, it may cause over-exfoliation.

Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

Product description

  • This scrub cleanses your face and removes dirt, oil, and impurities while microfine granules gently exfoliate your skin to buff away dull skin.
  • The formula in this scrub includes hydrating glycerin and vitamins B5 and E to soften as it cleans.
  • It gently exfoliates the skin without irritating or over-drying.
  • The ingredients support natural surface cell turnover that smooths skin and improves skin texture.
  • You can use this Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub for everyday use.
  • It is the dermatologists-tested and clinically-proven formula that works gently on sensitive skin.

Key products

  • Glycerin: Glycerin is the natural component of healthy skin. We derive it from vegetable and animal sources, or we made it synthetically. It is a humectant that draws moisture from the air around us and keeps it in the skin. Glycerin helps shield skin from environmental sources of irritation and works with emollients and other oils to make our dry skin feel soft and supple. It can strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier, enhance the penetration of skincare ingredients into the skin’s uppermost layers, and improves the skin’s resiliency and youthful look.
  • Vitamin E: Vitamin E works as a moisturizer to prevent or treat dry, flaking skin. It offers temporary relief from itching caused by dry skin by keeping your skin well moisturized. Vitamin E is high in antioxidants that affect blood circulation. You can notice a notable difference in the firmness and structure of the skin after topical use of vitamin E oil.
  • Vitamin B5: Vitamin B5 helps our skin attract and retain moisture content while protecting and enhancing natural repair work.

List of all ingredients

Water, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Coco-Glucoside, Glycerin, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Sodium Hydroxide, Bambusa Arundinacea Stem Extract, Sodium Citrate, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Heliotropine, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Polyquaternium-10, Sodium Chloride, Citric Acid, Masking Fragrance, Sodium Cocoamphoacetate.

How to use it

  • Use this effective extra gentle daily scrub morning and night.
  • Follow with a facial moisturizer when the skin is damp enough to draw needed water content into the skin and lock it for long-lasting hydration.
  • Use a facial SPF moisturizer with sun protection when you use it in the daytime.

Results and reviews

Most users reported that they would recommend this to their friends. After using this gentle exfoliator, many users spotted the super soft and silky smooth glowing skin within days.  


Only a few reports say that some users felt a burning sensation once they applied this product to their faces. So, try a patch test before using this directly into your face.

How To Choose Your Skin Exfoliator?

It is essential to consider many factors while choosing an exfoliator. Do not trust social media comments or reviews. Instead, ask for suggestions from your close circle and get a clear picture. It is essential to consider many factors while choosing an exfoliator. Do not trust social media comments or reviews. Instead, ask for suggestions from your close circle and get a clear picture. But, after, you have to do a patch test before applying it to your face. Each skin type is different and special, with unique characteristics.

The following are the factors to consider.

  • Skin type: It is always good to know about your skin type. You want to be friendly to your skin while selecting skincare products for it. During some period of your lifetime, you may think that your skin has the power to bear all the chemicals. But this is not the exact case when you get old. Your skin may become sensitive to some situations, external factors, and chemicals. So, first, understand your skin and then choose the exfoliator. Otherwise, it may do some harmful reactions to your skin.
  • Ingredients: Turn the product and check all the ingredients. These ingredients can be harsh or mild to your skin. You may have had some bitter experiences with specific chemicals in the past. So try to avoid those chemicals or ingredients as a favor for your skin. Yes! Natural ingredients are more effective than chemicals, but it does not mean that all the chemical agents will harm your skin. Consider both the types and choose the one.
  • Price: Price always plays a vital role in buying things. Many believe that expensive products give us more results. Is it a fact? No! It is not. Price will not decide the effectiveness of a product. Results depend on the ingredients and your skin type. Nowadays, many sellers use this price factor as a strategy to make their products famous. People buy these costly products believing that they give more results.
  • Skincare routine: Check the routine criteria before selecting a product. You can use some exfoliating scrubs daily. But some products are not suitable for daily use. You can see instructions on the label to use it daily, twice, or thrice a week. When you use it without proper knowledge, the results will be very harsh. Both daily use gentle exfoliating scrubs and twice or thrice a week usage exfoliators are available on the market today. You can choose the one that matches your time availability. If you are a person who spends time on skincare daily, you can pick a gentle daily use exfoliator. Otherwise, go for the next option.
  • Next, you can check whether that product matches both men’s and women’s skin types. Some products are only suitable for men’s skin types, women’s skin types, or both skin types. So consider your gender too while making a decision.

What Are Different Types Of Facial Exfoliators?

Knowing more about the types of exfoliation will help you choose the right ingredients.

There are two types of exfoliation. They are 

  • Physical
  • Chemical

Let us see in detail. 

Physical exfoliation:

Physical exfoliation means manually removing all the dirt and oil particles from the face by stripping away surface cells with textured bits and grainy particles. It involves physically sloughing away the outermost layer of the skin using various tools or abrasive substances. In this method, we also use a slightly rough washcloth, facial scrub, or other cleansing brushes to loosen the uppermost layer of skin and remove dead skin cells. Mechanical exfoliation does more favors for your skin than chemical exfoliation does. But you have to be alert while choosing the perfect tool for your skin. Otherwise, it may damage the skin and act in a reverse manner.

Drawbacks: Yes! These scrubs help you get smoother, softer, and clearer skin. But the major issue is the tiny particles in the physical exfoliator can be a bit abrasive and end up causing micro-tears on the skin surface. So it is recommendable to use it one to two times a week.

Chemical exfoliation:

Chemical exfoliation involves removing the dead skin cells using potent serums, foams, or cleansers infused with the exfoliants. These chemicals will exfoliate your skin gently and give a brightening effect. Different chemicals match different concerns and skin types. Do not worry about using chemical exfoliators. The fact is that it is a more gentle and dermatologist-recommended method than using a physical exfoliator.

  • Drawbacks: If you pick a product without caring about your skin type, it will do harmful reactions to your skin.

What Are The Different Ingredients To Look For In A Facial Exfoliator?

Exfoliating is not just a scrubbing. It can do more to your skin based on the various ingredients. If you choose just a scrub, it will simply remove the dead skin cells and make your skin polished and smooth. But if you use an exfoliator with added contents, you will receive the benefits of that ingredient as an added advantage. 

Now we can discuss some skin-changing exfoliator ingredients that work well and effectively for your skin.

  • Chemical exfoliation is always the best option when you expect a gentle exfoliation option. Physical exfoliation works hard on your skin and creates unexpected breakages and damage.
  • Even though chemical exfoliation is a perfect and gentle option for your skin, choose the correct formulation of active chemical ingredients for better results. If not, it may cause uneven skin tone, skin irritation, and other adverse effects.

Generally, hydroxy acids are the main ingredient to look for when buying a chemical exfoliator.

Hydroxy acids include two categories – AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) and BHAs (Beta Hydroxy Acids).

  • AHAs as exfoliator ingredients: Alpha hydroxy acids include acids – glycolic acid, lactic acid, malic acid, and mandelic acid. Glycolic and lactic acids are the acids that play vital roles in skin care products. There are thousands of scientific studies on AHAs based on the action of glycolic acid.
  • BHAs as exfoliator ingredients:  Beta hydroxy acids include acids like salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is the general type of BHA used in most chemical skincare products. 

Now let’s see everything in detail.

  • Glycolic Acid (AHA): We derive glycolic acids from sugar cane. It contains smaller-sized molecules than other AHAs. It gets absorbed into your skin faster and exfoliates the skin more effectively than others. This acid can improve skin cell turnover, dissolve the bond that holds your skin cells together, and helps the skin shed a high amount of dead skin cells more effectively. Glycolic acid acts on the surface layer of the skin and gently resurfaces the skin without scrubbing. It is why acid-based exfoliators are better than abrasive, physical exfoliators.
  • Lactic Acid (AHA): Lactic acid comes under Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA), and it is one of the more gentle chemical exfoliators. We derive it naturally from milk that gives yogurt and sour milk. It treats moderate to severe hyperpigmentation that happens due to the melanin differences. Lactic acid, a powerful exfoliant, works well to lighten dark spots, reduce acne blackheads and breakouts, balance your skin pH and improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. With regular use, you can notice a brighter and smoother skin complexion. This AHA can fade out the age spots and highly-visible pores. As one of the mildest forms of AHA, this acid is safe to use on sensitive skin in the proper concentrations.
  • Salicylic Acid (BHA): Salicylic acid has exfoliating properties that remove excess sebum and reduce sebum production, making it a perfect ingredient for unclogging pores. We can naturally find salicylic acid, a Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA), in willow bark and wintergreen leaves. We can also artificially synthesize it in a lab. Also, salicylic acid has mild anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, and it prevents and treats acne. It helps your skin control an oily feel, reduces hyperpigmentation, and reduces the appearance of blackheads. This acid is a vital ingredient for skin types like acne-prone skin, oily skin, and skin that is prone to hyperpigmentation. Not all can use salicylic acid as it causes dryness and irritation in some cases.
  • Malic acid: Malic acid comes under Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) family, and our body naturally produces this. We can also derive it from unripe fruit, often apples. Malic acid is ideal for sensitive skin types as it contains a molecule sizeable than most. They will not penetrate the skin as deeply and have a slower absorption rate. This acid exfoliates the dead skin cells at the outermost layer of the skin and balances the skin pH levels. It has the added benefit of acting as a humectant as it attracts moisture and traps it inside the skin layers. This hydration capability, larger size, and decreased penetration make malic acid gentler than other skincare acids.
  • Mandelic acid: We derive mandelic acid (AHAs) from almond extracts. It contains larger molecules and is the perfect choice for oily skin. This AHA can improve your skin texture and pore sizes. Mandelic acid has many benefits like treating aging skin (such as wrinkles, dullness, and skin texture changes), liver spots, melasma, and sun damage. It helps in accelerating cell turnover and increasing collagen production for a more youthful appearance. This acid can reduce hyperpigmentation and leave you with revitalized, radiant skin with regular use. It improves the skin elasticity and makes it appear firmer, with fewer fine lines. It gives an irritation lower than with other AHAs.
  • Bamboo extract: Bamboo extract from the nodes of specific bamboo stems is easy to use and does a precise exfoliation. Bamboo Exfoliator removes corneus cells accumulating on the skin surface and helps to refine your skin texture and brighten skin tone.
  • Papaya: Papaya is a great natural ingredient that does wonders on your skin. Papaya is a natural exfoliant that we extract from the papaya. It acts very gently on your skin, so you can use it as an exfoliator as one of its main exfoliating ingredients if you have sensitive skin. It eats up all the dead skin cells from the skin surface, naturally moisturizes, brightens, and removes age marks. It is always better to choose natural ingredients than other chemicals.
  • Japanese Rice Bran (Komenuka): It is the perfect food, and this rice is a powerhouse of various nutrients for health and skincare. It contains more vitamins, nourishing moisturizers, minerals, and antioxidants. A finely grounded rice powder will gently exfoliate, soften and smooth your skin.
  • Tartaric Acid: Tartaric Acid, an Alpha-Hydroxy Acid (AHA), helps you improve the skin texture. It works well on your skin to exfoliate and slough (or shed) old skin layers, leaving your skin with a glowing look and reducing the visible sign of aging. Tartaric acid, as a powerhouse, keeps the skin pH balanced, enhancing the natural balanced beauty of your skin.
  • Jojoba beads: Jojoba beads from jojoba oil will be spherical and come in various colors and shapes. Their smooth structure avoids microscopic tears on the surface of the skin. They are very mild and gentle on all skin types, including sensitive ones. Its natural emollient properties make them naturally more moisturizing than regular exfoliators and help keep the natural skin pH balance instead of stripping it from its natural oils.
  • Arabica coffee: Arabica coffee leaves your skin feeling and smelling fresh. It targets all the major skin issues. It will stimulate blood flow and reduce the appearance of cellulite, age spots, eczema, varicose veins, stretch marks, and psoriasis. It also acts as a natural detox by treating acne, removing dead skin, and getting rid of blackheads and other skin blemishes.
  • Enzymes: Enzymes are beneficial for dry, sensitive, and mature skin types, and they help the smooth texture, brighten skin tone, and clear the way for more efficient product penetration. Enzymes from fruits like pineapple and papaya break down proteins on your skin. They digest away the keratin protein in the outermost layer of your skin and slough off rough and dull dead skin cells to reveal soft, glowing skin. Some examples are papaya enzymes, pumpkin enzymes, pineapple enzymes, etc. 
  • Sea kelp: Sea kelp with high vitamins and trace minerals works on your skin as a firming agent, strengthening agent, healing agent, an exfoliating agent. Sea Kelp draws out all excess fluid, dead cells, and toxins that make you look dull and lifeless. Sea Kelp reduces the blood pooling under the skin and rosacea symptoms like facial inflammation, red discoloration, swelling, and acne.
  • French green clay: We can use french green clay as a full-body treatment to soften dry and rough skin. It is beneficial for removing impurities, tightening the pores, reducing inflammation in acne, toning the skin, and exfoliating dead skin cells. It has rich absorbent properties that work in beauty treatments by drawing out impurities and toxins from the skin.
  • Pumice powder: Pumice powder, an excellent natural exfoliant, cleanses and polishes your skin, leaving the skin looking visibly healthier and refreshed. Due to its porous surface, it is very efficient at more gentle exfoliation. It will revive dull skin by exfoliating your face.
  • Phytic acids: We derive phytic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), from grains, legumes, and rice. Phytic acid is the best option for people with sensitive or rosacea skin or prone to blackheads and acne. It helps these skin types clear out and shrink pores. This acid is similar to glycolic and lactic acid, and this is the gentlest of the three that causes little exfoliation or irritation to the skin.

Top picks of Facial exfoliators

Yes! Exfoliation is always good for your skin to get a glow and shiny finishing. Nowadays, exfoliators are available in the market for young to aged people. We cannot choose any product without proper knowledge about our skin type and ingredients. In this section, we can see some particular products that are best for specific skin types.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Oily Skin

Do you have oily skin? Then this section is for you. Is oily skin a good thing or a curse? Yes! It is a good thing as it is less likely to age marks and wrinkles. And, it is a curse as the excess oil creates acne, blackheads, and whiteheads more frequently. Oily skin may have acne, patches, blackheads, and whiteheads. These all occur due to excess production of sebum. So, people believe that exfoliating oily skin makes it dry. Which then leads to more oily skin. No! It is a wrong belief. Exfoliation is an essential thing for oily skin too.

You can use exfoliating scrubs to get better results. Scrubs with microbeads, shells, and other tiny particles help your skin wash away all the dead skin cells, oil (except natural oil), and other dust particles. Exfoliating oily skin two to three times a week can create magic. When you do things based on the instruction, it may lead to positive results.

Now, what are the ingredients to look for oily skin? Ingredients like salicylic acid, papaya, pineapple enzymes, lactic acid, glycolic acid, etc., work well on your oily skin. Now, let us see our suggested list of exfoliators for your oily skin.

Our suggestions:

  • Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub 

The glycerin in this exfoliator is the best option for oily skin as it draws water from the air into your skin. This activity makes your oily skin more moisturized without making it greasy. As a humectant, glycerin locks in the moisture in your skin to keep it hydrated.

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

BHA in this exfoliator is the best option for oily skin. It works effectively on the oily skin to reduce the oily appearance, acne, blackheads, and whiteheads by exfoliating the dead skin cells.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Sensitive Skin

Sensitive skin is not a disease as many think. It is just a skin condition. It is essential to give more care to your sensitive skin. Consider your skin condition, its reactions or particular chemicals, and other external factors while choosing any skin care product for your sensitive skin. This thing is the same in the case of exfoliators too. You have to be more aware while choosing an exfoliator. Otherwise, it may lead to a very harmful reaction if any ingredients in it are not suitable for your skin.

So, what are the ingredients to look for when you have sensitive skin? Many active ingredients work mildly on sensitive skin by giving a soothing feeling without any adverse effects. It is always crucial to find the best exfoliator that matches your skin. We are listing our suggestions for sensitive skin here. Please check it out. 

Our suggestions for sensitive skin:

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

The salicylic acid in this gentle exfoliator is suitable for sensitive skin types as others. You can use this exfoliator based on the routine mentioned on the pack or your skin’s reactions.

  • Aveeno positively radiant skin brightening exfoliating daily facial scrub 

People with sensitive skin types can use this exfoliator without worrying about anything. An ingredient like soy in this product works well on your sensitive skin. It will do any harmful action and react very gently.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Dry Skin

People with dry skin lack needed moisture and oil content in their facial skin. It will lead to cracks, patches, and breakouts. You may get this dry skin based on your lifestyle or genes. Exfoliating is a better remedy to wash away these dry patches and the dry outer layer. Try to avoid harsh mechanical exfoliation on dry skin. It may create more cracks or damage to your dry skin. Use chemical exfoliation methods using acids like AHAs. 

If you pick an exfoliator without considering the ingredients, it may worsen your skin condition. So, it is essential to choose the one with ingredients suitable for your dry skin.

Ingredients like glycolic acid, papaya enzyme, vitamin E, milk protein, pineapple enzyme, vitamin B3, jojoba beads, etc., make your dry skin more hydrated. Now, let us see our suggested list of products for dry skin.

Our suggestion:

  • Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub and Face Exfoliator

This exfoliator is one of the best formulas for dry skin. Manuka honey in this exfoliator helps us treat dry skin and works to retain the moisture content in the skin by attracting it from environmental factors.

  • Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

Vitamin E in this exfoliator enhances moisturization. It also reduces the flakiness and inflammation of your dry skin. Also, vitamin B5 in this formula helps your skin be softer and maintain elasticity.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Acne

Acne-prone skin is more likely to form pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads. One advantage of acne-prone skin is it always appears shinier and glowing due to the excess sebum production from the sebaceous glands.

There are many things to take care of when you have acne-prone skin. They include certain foods, lifestyles, skincare products, external factors, etc. Always keeping your face can give you some notable results. You cannot expect sudden results with any products when you have acne-prone skin.

Over-exfoliation is not suitable for acne-prone skin. Some products mention that you can use this twice a day like. You can use that kind of product as their instructions more often. Otherwise, exfoliating more frequently may damage your acne-prone skin more.    

So, what are the ingredients to look for in an exfoliator for acne-prone skin? Ingredients like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, Vitamin C, tea tree, etc., help your acne-prone skin fight against harmful factors and get relief. Now, let us see our suggested list of exfoliator products for acne-prone skin.

Our suggestion:

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Salicylic acid in this exfoliator product works well to treat various acne by unclogging the blocked pores. First, it breaks down the bonds between dead skin cells to treat acne root causes. It can reduce sebum production.

  • Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub and Face Exfoliator 

The walnut shell in this product helps your skin wash away all the oily substances and dust particles. This activity reduces acne and other scars.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Glowing skin

Do you feel clear skin without dark patches, red marks, acne, wrinkles, or dryness? Yes! You have glowing skin. Glowing skin without any flaws is a dream of every girl. All the women in various age groups try hard to achieve this.

To get glowing skin, you have to concentrate more on your sleeping schedule, food habits, exercise, water intake, fruit intake, etc. Will exfoliation help you in this? Yes! Of course, exfoliation can make many notable changes in your dull skin and patchy marks.

People think that only the daily routine of cleansing and moisturizing can give a glowing skin texture. But another secret thing to do is exfoliation. Exfoliation helps in skin elasticity, collagen production, and skin rejuvenation. When we remove all the dead skin cells from the face using exfoliators, it will help your face glow like a mirror. 

What are the ingredients to look for in an exfoliator to get glowing skin? Vitamin C, willow bark water, vitamin E, glycolic acid, etc., can make your skin glower. Let us see our suggested list of exfoliators to get glowing skin.

Our suggestion:

  • Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

The accelerated brightening formula in this product gives you a sudden brightness and glow from the first use. The mandelic and glycolic acid in this formulation resurface the skin’s outer layer and give you a glowy complexion.

  • Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub

Soy extract in this product reduces sunburns and redness and increases collagen production to give you more brightening skin. It also contains glycerin to give your skin a more youthful and healthy glow.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Clogged Pores

When the oil, dust, and other particles get clogged inside the facial pores, it leads to acne. It is a common phenomenon in oily skin. Sometimes, your dead skin cells get trapped inside the pores and make them clogged. Will exfoliation do anything for clogged pores? Yes! Exfoliation will remove dead skin and unclog the pores that create acne too. Pores sizes get stretched when they get a blockage by dead skin cells, oil particles, and makeup chemicals. When we use correct exfoliators, it will remove these blocks and retain the pore size.

Can all the exfoliators treat clogged pores? No, we need to look for some special ingredient that reaches the pores and removes the blocks. Ingredients like licorice extract, hyaluronic acid, tannins, glycolic acid, etc., helps your clogged pores to get relief. Now, let us see the suggested list of exfoliating products that work well for your clogged pores.

Our suggestions:

  • Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

The active formula in the Neutrogena exfoliates your skin and unclogs the pores to prevent acne in the future. You can reduce the future blockages with regular use as this is a daily use scrub.

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

The BHA in this product enters the deep areas of your pores, breaks the bondings, and wash away all the blocks.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Mature Skin

When you get older, your skin starts showing signs of age. And also, exposure to sunlight damages the fibers in your skin called elastin. It makes your skin look more mature. Age factors make your skin rough, itchy, transparent, fragile, and prone to acne, blackheads, and whiteheads.

Mature skin always needs extra care when compared with other skin types. Keen observation is necessary when choosing a product for the matured skin. Not all the ingredients will suit all skin types. Ingredients like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, PHA (Poly Hydroxy Acid), manuka honey, orange peel oil, dead sea minerals, glycerin, turmeric, aloe vera, etc., give a new life to your matured skin.

Our suggestions:

  • Era Organics Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub and Face Exfoliator

Manuka honey in this product helps you reduce the signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles. It also reduces under-eye bags and dark circles from its beginning stage.

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Salicylic acid in this product removes your old skin, encourages new cell growth, and offers relief from several other skin issues.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation describes the darker patches of skin that result from excess melanin production. The causes may be acne scars, sun damage, or hormone fluctuations. Sometimes, hyperpigmentation goes away soon, but sometimes, it may take a long time to fade. In some other cases, it will never go away completely. Exfoliation can remove darkened skin cells in the skin layers and lighten your hyperpigmentation.

Some ingredients like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, vitamin C, fruit enzymes, etc., create wonder in your hyperpigmentation and help you get rid of that.

Our suggestions:

  • Neutrogena Bright Boost Resurfacing Facial Exfoliator

Mandelic acid in this product helps you get rid of inflammatory acne and reduce age and sunburns. It will lighten and brighten skin to treat hyperpigmentation. 

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Salicylic acid in this product helps us even the skin tone. It reduces discoloration due to post-acne hyperpigmentation through its anti-inflammatory effects.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Textured Skin

You can notice some bumps or uneven structures on textured skin. The accumulation of dead skin cells gives an odd skin texture. Some causes of this skin texture are aging or acne scarring. Exfoliation will help you remove dead skin cells and reduce the appearance of textured and bumpy skin on your face. Exfoliating helps us clear this skin texture and restore an even skin. 

Ingredients like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, Vitamin C, mandelic acid, etc., work on your textured skin and make it even-toned and brighter.  

Our suggestions:

  • Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

The glycerin, vitamin E, and vitamin B5 in this product are suitable for improving the cell turnover and smoothing the skin texture.

  • Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

This product is best for textured skin types. With this scrub, you can reduce redness on your skin and improve skin texture to get an even skin tone.

Best Facial Exfoliator For Makeup

Makeup always gives some girls more confidence. It will provide us with a natural look and better appearance and prevent the skin from sunlight. It is essential to remove makeup before bedtime. Otherwise, it will cause extensive damage to your facial skin. If you leave makeup on the skin, you prevent skin renewal while you sleep.

Exfoliation helps us remove makeup more evenly without flaws. Exfoliation enters into the pores more than a mild cleanser can. Daily removing your makeup with a gentle exfoliator supports your skin’s natural processes and gives you a healthier and fresher appearance.

Gently exfoliating your face before makeup application gives you a flawless makeup look. It will give your face a smooth structure, and thus you can get an even skin tone structure while wearing makeup. Now we can see our suggested list of exfoliators for makeup skin.

Our suggestions:

  • Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Exfoliating Daily Facial Scrub

You can use this daily-use exfoliating scrub for removing makeup at the end of the day or before the makeup to even your skin texture for a better makeup look.   

  • Cetaphil Extra Gentle Daily Scrub

It is advisable to use this exfoliator scrub with glycerin twice a day. So you can use this to remove makeup after a day out or prepare your face for heavy makeup.

How to Use Facial Exfoliators?

Exfoliating helps your skin speed up the removal process of dead skin cells from the skin surface. You can exfoliate your skin using a granular exfoliating product, a purpose-made chemical, an exfoliation tool like a pumice stone, an electric exfoliating brush, or exfoliating shower puff.

How to exfoliate your skin?

  • It is essential to treat your skin more gently when exfoliating. If you treat your skin too harshly, it may cause drying and lead to microtears. You can use exfoliating scrubs with creams on damp skin to lather up and exfoliate your skin during the morning shower or night-time bath.
  • It can be anything like exfoliating scrub, body puff, or brush, but always make small, circular motions over the area you want to exfoliate. 
  • Exfoliate each small area for around 20-30 seconds, then rinse off with warm water.
  • Do not forget to apply a nourishing body moisturizer after exfoliating that keeps your skin glowing.
  • Yes! It is advisable to exfoliate your skin twice a week. But you can change the routine to daily or twice a day based on the product.
  • If you have any cuts, open wounds, or sunburn on your skin, give some time for healing and do this. Thus, you are helping your skin prevent further irritations.

How often can we exfoliate?

You can exfoliate your skin twice a week as a part of your weekly skincare routine. The essential duty of exfoliation is to balance. It should buff away dead skin cells. But be aware not to strip away too many of your skin’s natural oils. You can keep dry, dull skin at bay by maintaining a twice-weekly exfoliating regime without stripping those necessary natural oils.

When Should You Use A Facial Exfoliator?

When your skin works hard to regenerate, the dead skin cell remains on your face’s upper layer, accumulates over time, and mixes with other natural skin oils, makeup chemicals, and sunscreen solutions. These all activities may make your skin worse. You can see some changes, but it is difficult to note hidden skin variations. Even though these changes are not visible, they may show you some symptoms. You may feel it like skin irritations or itchiness.

In this section, we can discuss why we need exfoliation and what are the symptoms your skin shows when it needs exfoliation to breathe well.

Following are some of the symptoms your skin shows.

  • People believe that some skincare products lose their efficacy over time. No! It is not correct. Do you know what happens? The dead skin cells build up on your skin and prevent all the soothing or active agents from reaching deep within your skin cells. When we do an exfoliation, it loosens up all the oil particles and protein content and allows your skin to breathe again. Exfoliants can cleanse the skin more effectively than a cleansing agent.
  • Do you have a habit of touching your face often? Yes, or No, whatever, touch it now. How do you feel? If your skin is dull, lackluster, and feels dry to the touch, it is time to slough off dead skin cells. An exfoliation will smoothen your skin immediately and make it even-toned. It will give signals to skin receptors that your skin is thinner. Thus, it stimulates the skin cell renewal faster, and you will get healthy skin soon.
  • The skin oil balance may vary when you have excess natural oil production on the outer layer of the skin. It makes the oil seem to build up and collect in specific areas. It is a common thing in people who have combination skin. In this skin type, the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin areas) will be shinier than the rest of the face. When you notice this, do not wait for anything. Just go for an exfoliation that removes this excess oil and sebum and even heals breakouts.
  • Skin is a renewable thing that renews every 21 days on average. But still, are you a witness of scarring or discoloration from previous breakouts? Then only exfoliation can help you. It will stimulate vital blood flow, help your skin renew skin cells on the top layers, and promote a balanced and healthy complexion.
  • Generally, doing an exfoliation after every summer is essential. Because in summer, you spend most of the time under the sun. It makes your sun thicker. That thickening also will not happen even. You can notice uneven tanning and skin thickening. An exfoliation even out all these things. Try exfoliation after summer only after ensuring you did not develop any sunburns.

Benefits of Exfoliating Your Skin

Exfoliation rids your face and body of dead skin cells and helps you with other skin imperfections, and enhances the effectiveness of your regular skincare routine. So you can receive all the benefits of healthy and glowing skin.

The benefits of regular skin exfoliation are 

  • Stimulate blood flow and improve the skin glow: Will exfoliating your skin increase blood circulation? Yes! The circular movements we do during exfoliating will stimulate the blood flow that helps your skin flush out toxins. Exfoliation is the best and most effective way to improve blood flow and lymph drainage. Thus, improved blood circulation will minimize cellulite appearance, improve skin elasticity, and enhance overall body glow and radiance.
  • Reduce blemished skin and breakouts: A good exfoliating routine will benefit you more if you have acne-prone or mark-filled skin. If you have blemishes on your skin, exfoliating will help unclog pores that minimize the formation of whiteheads and blackheads. Do not avoid exfoliators if you suffer from acne or breakouts. However, a gentle and regular exfoliating routine can help your skin break down bacteria and speed up the new skin cell production. Do not scrub your face or body too hard while exfoliating for more results. And be aware while choosing exfoliant. If it includes harsh chemicals, it makes your skin drier, results in excess sebum production, and the cycle of blemishes begins. So, instead of harsh chemicals, opt for a gentle exfoliant, do it twice a week, and use a light moisturizer to rehydrate your skin after exfoliating.
  • Notice changes in your aging process: As you get older, your skin will also become old and show some visible changes. You may notice visible changes like darker reduced elasticity, pigmentation spots, and rough patches on your skin. Exfoliating helps you break up these pigmented cells and remove the build-up of dry skin that helps retain a healthy glow and smoothness of your skin. When you follow this regular exfoliating and moisturizing regime, you can soon notice a complexion transform from dull and dry to soft and glowing.
  • Prepare the skin for tanning: Exfoliation is an essential pre-tanning step when you plan to do fake tanning. It helps you remove dead skin cells and ensures that you have a smooth, even skin surface ready for applying fake tan. Thus, your tan looks best and prevents your skin from going patchy. If you exfoliate before tanning in the sun, it will help the tan last longer and give an even look by removing dry skin. Use a sun-protecting moisturizer before tanning that keeps your body hydrated and protected.
  • Improve hydration level and moisture content: Your skin will suffer more from dehydration when you neglect exfoliation. Do you know why it happens? When the layers of dead skin cells increase, your skin feels harder to absorb the most-needed hydrating moisturizers you apply. If you exfoliate regularly, you will be able to wash away all dead skin cells to remove dry, flaky skin. When you apply moisturizer to the new skin cells, it will improve moisture absorption and reap the benefits of healthy and hydrated skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) Why is exfoliation essential in a skincare routine?

Because exfoliation will slough away the dead skin cells from your outer skin surface to reveal smoother and brighter skin as they minimize the appearance of fine lines and pigmentation and increase cell turnover. As an additional benefit, these products will allow your other skincare products to penetrate the skin much better than when applied without an exfoliation.

2) How often can I exfoliate my skin?

With aging, our skin loses its ability to remove dead skin cells. So, you can use an exfoliation product to do that. But, it is better to start exfoliating your skin in your 20’s.

3) What is the order or position of exfoliation in my skincare routine?

It is better to do exfoliation after cleansing to ensure that the skin is ready for the following steps in your routine. Apply an SPF as the last step in your morning routine as exfoliation and cleansing increase the skin’s photosensitivity.


  • When you are not removing dead skin cells frequently using an exfoliator, it will make other skincare lotions or creams penetrate the inner layer of skin cells for better results.
  • If you do over-exfoliation, it will reduce your natural cell turnover. 
  • When we do Physical exfoliation by hardly scrubbing the small particles in the scrub, it will create micro-tears on the skin and damage it.
  • Morning is always the best time for scrubbing your skin. Exfoliation gives a fresher and youthful look to the face and increases the blood flow for glowing skin.
  • Exfoliation is not just removing dead skin cells. It helps in reducing skin pigmentation and skin discoloration too.
  • You can do skin exfoliation based on your skin type. Do not repeat exfoliation often if you have oily skin. Too much scrubbing will affect oil glands leading to breakouts or pimple invasion. You need to do exfoliation often if you have dry skin. Otherwise, it would lead to dry patches due to the accumulation of dead skin cells.
  • Some exfoliants that include granules with rough edges may create new damage on your skin. Choose exfoliants with rounded beads instead to prevent harm.

Remove the dead skin cells and expose your true glow to this world!!!