A lot of you guys probably haven't used exfoliating soaps before. If you're like my husband, before switching to artisan soaps you were using regular old grocery store soap bars. Or maybe you haven't made the switch yet, but you're curious. Hopefully I can teach you something either way! Because while you boys may not know about this stuff, us girls have been using exfoliating soaps our whole lives!
There's no official way to classify grades of exfoliation in soaps, but most soapers use a simple system of light, moderate, and heavy. It's the size, amount, and hardness of the grain in a soap that determines it's grade. A single ingredient - such as sand - can run the entire spectrum depending on the quality of the particular sand. A very fine grain sand will make for a gentle exfoliator, while a sand with larger, coarser grains can be quite abrasive indeed.
A light exfoliating soap can be used every day if you like. These soaps use finer grains, or elements that are a bit softer - such as the oatmeal in our Vampire Hunter soap. It's not nearly as abrasive, and thus will not strip away as much of that top layer of skin, and will not leave the new layer underneath nearly as exposed. If you use it every day, and find that your skin is getting a tad irritated, switch to every other day - or a two days on, one day off model.
Exfoliating soaps are soaps that have bits of grit in them that aids in scrubbing away dead skin cells from the top layer of your epidermis. Be extra vigilant when rising this soap off your body, as bits of that grit might be left behind.
Moderate exfoliating soaps should be used less frequently. If you work outside, in dirty environments, have dirty hobbies, rough skin, or regular sun exposure, consider using a moderate exfoliator 2-3 times a week, or every few days.
Both moderate and heavy exfoliating soaps should be used differently from lighter soaps. Where non-abrasive soaps can be used to scrub the skin rapidly, heavier soaps should be used more slowly. Deliberate circles should be employed in a wax-on-wax off motion. If you find that you're hurting yourself with the soap, slow down and go a little gentler with your pressure.
A heavy exfoliating soap (like our Creature soap) should be used only occasionally. Think of it more as an occasional maintenance activity than as part of your regular routine. They can also be good for spot-exfoliating, such as scrubbing the bottoms of the feet which easily become quite calloused.
When rinsing soap off from heavy or moderate soaps, consider using cool water - as cool as you can stand. This will help to close up your pores after a good scrubbing.
After using moderate or heavy soaps, be sure to pat dry with a towel. Don't wipe dry, as the motion can irritate your skin. Remember, you just scrubbed away dead skin cells and left the younger, livelier skin beneath exposed. This is also why you should apply a protective, moisturizing lotion (such as Dr. Frankenstein's Flesh Revival Cream). It will help protect that newly exposed skin and keep it from drying out.
As a final note, remember not to use moderate or heavy exfoliators on your face or neck, or any other sensitive areas. Stick to non-abrasive varieties (such as Dracula, Psycho Clown, or Reaper), or light exfoliators for these areas. Exfoliating these areas can very easily lead to irritating and even breakouts, so we encourage you to use something gentle. If you want to use an exfoliator, hey, do your thing - but watch for signs of irritating and discontinue if it occurs.
Remember, you can send us an e-mail or a live-chat here on the site (or your favorite social media outlet as long as its Facebook or Instagram) with any questions you have about any of our products!