Over-exfoliating is a problem that plagues so many people without them realizing they’re doing it. I get it, exfoliating gives you an instant result: smooth, glowing skin that’s luminous and free of ashiness that plagues those with dry skin. But you can take it too far. That’s when you over-exfoliate.

There are two types of exfoliation, mechanical and chemical, and you can take it too far with both. The good news is that you can repair the damage you’ve done. It isn’t hard, but it takes some patience.

How do I know if I’ve Over-Exfoliated?

With either mechanical or chemical exfoliation, the first sign is red skin. The skin becomes inflamed and irritated. This can either be temporary or chronic inflammation, so beware. There could be a permanent rash on your cheek if you keep over-exfoliating! The inflammation could even become infected because you’re opening up the hair follicle.

Another sign is that your skin is more sensitive than normal. Products you’ve used without a problem have suddenly started to react with your skin. You could experience redness, itchiness, inflammation, irritation, enlarged pores, acne, and more. Doesn’t that sound like a great list of things to have on your face at all times?

It’s painful and makes you look like you’ve perpetually been running. There’s a simple fix, though, that will help all of this go away.

How to Fix Over-Exfoliating

Put down the scrubs and step away from the peels. Even though they make your skin feel fresh and smooth right after you use them, they’re doing more harm than good.

Stay away from any at-home exfoliating products for at least two weeks. This will give your skin cells a chance to turn over and begin repairing themselves without you scrubbing them off.

Also look for moisturizers and toners that are made for sensitive skin. During this time, your skin is pretty raw and it doesn’t have any shields up. While you are letting your skin relax, be sure to give it plenty of hydration and protection.

Don’t let the “acid” part of “hyaluruonic acid” scare you. This is a great addition to your skin care routine and it can even help you from needing to exfoliate too much as it plumps the skin. It binds moisture incredibly well and replenishes your skin from the inside out.

The Hydra line from Yonka is my go-to recommendation for anyone plagued by over-exfoliating, dry skin, sensitive skin, aging skin…basically anyone can benefit from it! I love both the Hydra Fluide and Hydra Serum.

While your skin is still recovering, the Hydra Serum is great for an intense burst of hydration. For daily maintenance after your skin is back to normal, the Hydra Fluide is a must. It’s a lightweight moisturizer that makes your skin look plump and dewy.

Again, your skin will be glowing so you don’t need to exfoliate that much!

How Often You Should Exfoliate

If you’re prone to over-exfoliating, definitely leave your skincare to a pro! A professional can provide the right kind of exfoliation for your skin type and concerns.

Stay away from products that contain granules. While these aren’t as popular as they once were, they’re still out there. They tear at the skin at a micro level and can do even more harm, especially if you use them frequently.

While a pro will tell you the best thing for your skin, I love and recommend dermaplaning. It removes the dead cells as well as any fine hairs on your skin, revealing smooth, glowing skin. Because dermaplaning removes old skin cells, this treatment is great to add every 4-6 weeks.

In the meantime, wait about a week before you do any exfoliation and then add in something gentle. The Gommas Yonka is a must-have. It’s a super-gentle, 4-in-1 gel facial peel that has exfoliating, clarifying, hydrating, and balancing effects. Once a week will reveal gorgeous skin without overdoing it.


If you’re concerned about over-exfoliating, there is hope for you! Put down the scrubs and come see me for a custom facial that addresses your skincare concerns. Regular facials are essential to caring for your skin. They leave it bright and even – something you aren’t doing when you over-exfoliate!

Stop Over-Exfoliating - It's Horrible for your Skin!

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