How To Exfoliate: Our Head-To-Toe Guide

Face scrubs, body scrubs, hand scrubs, foot scrubs ... It seems there's a scrub for every part of the body! We give you the lowdown on exfoliators, so you'll know which one to use – and how to use it – for softer, purified skin.

The Benefits Of Exfoliation

Exfoliators are great for sloughing away dead cells, flaky skin and excess sebum, lifting away impurities, and buffing away rough skin. They help to stimulate cell renewal, prevent ingrown hairs, cleanse deep down, and leave your skin feeling softer and smoother. What's not to love?

In particular, the benefit of a face scrub is that it unclogs and reduces the appearance of pores. This is because, when pores are clean they appear smaller and less obvious. Another benefit of exfoliation is the skin’s improved ability to retain moisture.  Exfoliating will enhance the other elements of your skincare routine, as moisturisers work more effectively on a smoother surface. Be careful though, the benefits of exfoliation are only plentiful as long as you don’t over-exfoliate…

Face Scrub

face scrub
Does your complexion need a brightening boost? L'OCCITANE offers a range of facial exfoliators and masks, so you're sure to find one that suits your skin type and addresses your concerns. Purifying, soothing, moisturizing, anti-ageing... Simply choose one that meets your needs!

Our Radiance Face Scrub is made with freshly harvested pomelo from Corsica. (Oh, and if you're wondering what a pomelo is, it's a large citrus fruit that looks and tastes much like a grapefruit – but it's not!) Suitable for all skin types, this face scrub contains tiny granules that rid skin of impurities and help to unclog pores. It works to bring back your natural glow, and leaves skin feeling smoother and comfortable. And then there's the amazing texture... It looks like jam (but don't worry, it's not as sticky!) and smells fabulously fruity! 

How To Use A Face Scrub

If you're going to exfoliate your face, start by wetting your skin. Then take a small amount of face scrub and apply with circular movements. Avoid the eye area but pay extra attention to the T-zone. Rinse with clean water then admire your fresh, bright complexion! You can follow with a face mask for a moisturizing, soothing or purifying effect, or simply apply a facial serum.

How Often To Exfoliate

If you find yourself asking ‘how often should I exfoliate’ then look no further. The average person should be exfoliating around 2-3 times per week. This will vary from person to person, as some skin is more sensitive, or more dry than others. In this case, they may benefit from exfoliating just once a week. Usually, most people are fine to use chemical exfoliants on a more regular basis, as they aren’t so abrasive on the skin. Our Powder to Mousse Facial Exfoliator includes AHA which is a great natural exfoliant that comes from fruit enzymes.

Ultimately, exfoliation is a very personal part of your skincare routine. Everyone’s skin and skin-needs are different, so take some time to experiment with products and see what suits your skin the most. If you are new to exfoliating, why not try our Reine Blanche Illuminating Face Scrub. Its creamy texture is great for gentle exfoliation whilst still ensuring even skin texture and radiant complexion.

The Different Types Of Exfoliation

Enzymatic Exfoliation

Enzyme exfoliation is a type of chemical exfoliation that breaks down the keratin protein in the skin which holds dead and dulling skin cells together. Using this type of exfoliation will reveal smoother skin.

Physical Exfoliation

Physical exfoliation uses an ingredient, or a tool, that physically scrubs old, dead cells from the surface of your skin.

Natural Acid Exfoliation

Alpha and beta hydroxy acids are naturally occurring acid extracts from plants which act as mild exfoliants. Hydroxy acids dissolve the chemical bonds between skin cells on the surface, encouraging exfoliation and revealing the underlying skin.

DIY Expert Exfoliating Powder

This exfoliating powder combines two types of exfoliation while also softening the skin using the extract of Almond proteins:

  • Gentle Enzymatic Exfolation
  • Deep Botanical Acid Exflolation



Take-Away Scrub

This exfoliating scrub combines two types of exfoliation while also softening the skin using the extract of Almond oils:

  • Gentle Enzymatic Exfolation
  • Physical Gentle Exfolation



Try Our Exfoliating Face Scrubs

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Body Scrub

body exfoliation
L'OCCITANE body scrubs are ideal for exfoliating any part of your body – but shouldn't be used on your face. They're made with bigger exfoliating granules, which come from a plant or mineral source (sugar crystals, camargue salt, crushed almond shells and cereal flakes). These scrubs act immediately and help to stimulate blood flow. 

Our Almond Crunchy Muesli Scrub is so delicious, it's almost good enough to eat! (But please don't). This delectable concoction features almond flakes, white and brown sugar and cereals – ingredients that gently but effectively exfoliate. We've combined them with almond oil from Provence, so you can enjoy natural ingredients that nourish your skin, protect its hydrolipidic film, and leave it visibly smoother, softer and more supple.
body scrub and almond oil combination

How To Use A Body Scrub

Our body scrubs can be used in two different ways:
  • If you're looking for some serious exfoliation, begin by wetting your skin, then take some product and massage over target areas. It's best if you use circular or upward movements, to stimulate microcirculation. Once you've finished, simply rinse with clean water.
  • If you want exfoliation to be all about well-being, relaxation, scents and sensations, we suggest combining the Almond Crunchy Muesli Scrub with our Almond Shower Oil. Put a small amount of the scrub in the palm of your hand (or in a small container), then mix with a little Almond Shower Oil. Apply the mixture to wet skin, then rinse. Bliss!

Now that you've removed all dead cells and your skin feels smooth and squeaky clean, you can apply a body butter, cream or lotion to nourish deep down. 

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Hand Scrub

Our hands are exposed to everything. Changes in temperature, pollution, dirt, UV rays, the elements, hot water, harsh cleansing agents, etc. These can all take their toll, leaving your hands feeling rough and dry – and in need of a little TLC! Pamper yourself with a hand scrub that will help to soften and repair the skin, and keep the nails looking beautiful.

Have you met our Shea Butter One-Minute Hand Scrub? Its ingredients include organic shea butter (10%), ground walnut husks, apricot oil and allantoin, and it can even be used if you have dry skin. So, what does this product promise? There's a clue in the name... In just one minute, it smoothes and nourishes your hands. You can also use it to exfoliate your feet and any rough areas on the body, such as elbows and knees. 
beautiful hands

How To Use A Hand Scrub

Apply this hand scrub directly to dry hands. Then slowly massage the back of the hand, the fingers and around the nails. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. Apply your hand cream immediately afterwards: its moisturizing effect will be optimised by using the scrub. To take care of your nails, take a look at our Shea Nail & Cuticle Nourishing Oil.

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Foot Scrub

Foot scrub
Our feet spend much of their time stuck inside shoes, so it's no wonder that the skin of the feet can become dry, hard or damaged. The best way to combat this problem is by using a foot scrub to smooth and soften. Because the skin on your feet is thicker, there's no need to be extra gentle, so you can use body scrubs with large exfoliating granules. Sometimes you have to be a little rough to get rid of roughness!

The Shea Butter Ultra Rich Body Scrub is ideal for exfoliating your feet. Enriched with apricot oil and finely ground nutshells, it seems to melt on the skin the moment you apply it. Gentle yet effective, it's excellent for softening dry, rough patches. Plus you'll love its subtle, delicate scent.
Exfoliating products for feet

How To Use A Foot Scrub

Use body scrub in the shower to exfoliate your entire body. When you get to your feet, pay particular attention to heels, the top of your feet, and around the nails. Rinse well, dry your skin, then apply moisturizer.

We recommend exfoliating once or twice a week (unless you have very sensitive skin). Scrubs help to reveal the skin's natural beauty, so they make a great gift for someone – or treat for yourself!

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