How to Exfoliate Skin Naturally

How to Exfoliate Skin Naturally for a Flawless Self-Tan

Getting a smooth, polished glow with self-tanners or spray tans depends enormously on properly exfoliating skin beforehand. Moreover, Exfoliation removes the top dull layer of dead skin cells, allowing more even application and longer-lasting tan results. Harsh scrubs are too aggressive though and can cause microtears. Furthermore, This article will cover gentle, natural methods to exfoliate the skin leaving it ready for flawless bronzing.

What is Exfoliation?


Exfoliation is removing dead skin cells from the outermost surface layer of skin. It also helps reveal fresh new skin underneath that reflects light better reducing the appearance of fine lines, acne scarring, discolouration, and rough texture.

On average the top layer of skin replenishes itself every 30 days. However, with aging cell turnover slows causing buildup of dead dull skin. Furthermore, Exfoliation speeds up this skin cell-shedding process.

There are two following methods of exfoliation:

Physical exfoliation uses abrasive scrubs, brushes, or tools to slough off dead skin mechanically. This approach is fast-acting but can damage the skin if overly aggressive.

Chemical exfoliation utilizes acids that dissolve the bonds keeping dead skin attached. Slower-acting, but gentle daily use exfoliates without inflammation risk.

When it comes to prepping skin for bronzing treatments like self-tanning or spray tans, exfoliation is a mandatory step for gorgeous results.

Benefits of Skin Exfoliation

Exfoliating offers the following beautifying skin benefits:

  • Smooths skin texture – Removing dead cells reveals supple, baby-soft skin below
  • Brightens complexion – Gets rid of dull tissue so skin looks radiant
  • Fades spots and scars – Helps even out skin tone abnormalities
  • Reduces acne – Prevent dead cell buildup inside pores
  • Minimizes fine lines – Increases collagen production combatting wrinkles
  • Allows better product absorption – Skin care sinks in better without a dead skin barrier

Additionally, exfoliating preps skin perfectly before any spray tanning or bronzing treatment by:

  • Enhancing an even application – No rough patches resisting colour absorption
  • Lengthening duration – Color lasts longer without dead flakes sloughing off
  • Reducing ingrown hairs – Prevents trapping tan irregularly inside pores
  • Fading dark spots – Evens out patchy discoloration before new color applied

Now that the multitude of benefits is clear, let’s look at why exfoliation before tanning is an absolute must.

If You Don’t Exfoliate Skin Before Tanning?

Skipping proper exfoliation ahead of a spray tan or using self-tanning lotions is a recipe for lacklustre results. Without removing dead skin first:

  • Tan fades faster as dead flakes that clung to colour slough off quickly
  • Dry patches resist color absorption creating an uneven blotchy appearance
  • Dark spots from previous tanning stand out starkly through fresh tan application
  • Flaky skin traps self-tanner inside crevices leading to more ingrown hairs

Additionally, unexfoliated skin prevents proper hydration essential for an optimal bronzed glow.

By gently sloughing away the top debris-laden layer, exfoliation leaves smooth, even-toned canvas for flawless tan results that last.

Now that we know why exfoliating for tanning is non-negotiable, let’s cover natural methods to exfoliate safely.

Best Natural Methods for Skin Exfoliation

Harsh scrubs with plastic microbeads or abrasive nut shells are too aggressive for frequent use. Repeated inflammation damages collagen production accelerating aging.

Luckily, nature provides plenty of gentle effective exfoliants to reveal gorgeous skin:

Dry Body Brushing

Using a dry stiff-bristled brush before showering removes dead skin and boosts circulation and lymph drainage. Always brush lightly towards the heart.

Dry Brushing

  • Brush in circular motions toward the heart
  • Recommended brush types:
    • Natural bristle brushes with rigid bristles
    • Best brushes have removable handles for easy grip
  • Start at feet/legs brushing upwards, then arms outwards, torso downwards
  • Helps minimize the appearance of cellulite by improving blood flow
  • Stimulates lymph nodes aiding toxin and also waste elimination

Sugar or Salt Scrubs

Granulated white sugar or sea salt mixed with a touch of honey, oil, or aloe provides a mild polish dissolving dead cells without redness.

Sugar vs Salt Scrubs Comparison:

ExfoliantGrain Size
Best Skin Type
SaltCoarseMediumNormal, Oily

Essential Oil Scrubs for Skin Exfoliation

Essential oils like lavender, tea tree, or frankincense naturally cleanse and calm skin. Add 5-6 drops into a base sugar/salt scrub.

Essential Oil Scrub Recipes by Skin Type

  • Dry skin: Avocado oil, rosehip oil, geranium oil
  • Oily skin: Lemongrass oil, clary sage oil, grapefruit oil
  • Mature skin: Pomegranate oil, myrrh oil, carrot seed oil

Baking Soda

Baking soda gently exfoliates and neutralizes skin pH. Mix with water or honey and massage on damp skin avoiding the eye area before rinsing.


Grind dry oats into a powder to make a soothing scrub gentle enough for sensitive skin types. Blend with yoghurt or milk for antioxidant protection.

Oatmeal Scrub Grinding Tips

  • Use a clean coffee grinder, small food processor or blender
  • Short 10-second pulses to coarsely grind dry oats
  • Colloidal oatmeal is even gentler for sensitive skin
  • Combine with yoghurt for added lactic acid exfoliation

Coffee Grounds

Used coffee grounds scrub away dead skin cells with antioxidant and circulatory benefits. Mix with coconut oil or shea butter and also massage lightly onto the body or face.

Fruit Enzyme Peels

Papaya, pineapple, lemon, and also apple contain digestive enzymes like papain and bromelain that dissolve protein bonds holding dead skin. Puree fruit, apply, and wait 5 minutes before rinsing. Avoid eye area.

Chemical Exfoliants

Alpha hydroxy acids like lactic acid from milk or glycolic acid from sugar cane extract effectively exfoliate without abrasion. Start with low concentrations.

Using these gentle all-natural methods 2-3 times a week ensures super smooth skin ready for flawlessly bronzed results. Always moisturize after exfoliating to nourish newly revealed fresh skin.

Get Gorgeous, Glowing Skin Ready for Flawless Tanning

Achieving an evenly sun-kissed bronzed body depends enormously on proper exfoliation first to remove dead skin buildup. Harsh scrubs risk irritation and damage while skipping exfoliation altogether guarantees patchy, rapidly fading results.

Luckily, homemade sugar and salt scrubs, dry brushing, fruit peels, and also chemical exfoliant acids all offer affordable, accessible options to exfoliate the skin. Just remember to always moisturize afterwards and build an exfoliating routine into your weekly self-care!

With a simple regimen, you can easily prep lacklustre skin for glowing radiance ready to absorb beautifully uniform colour application the next time you spray tan or bare your body with a self-tanner. Dullness and thus flakiness are gone…a sexy smooth glow is on!

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