Exfoliating gloves to scrub dead skin: Yass or pass?

Published on: 8 June 2022, 12:45 pm IST

Exfoliating gloves or bath gloves have set the internet abuzz. But are they really worth a try? A dermat unfolds it all.

Shifa Khan
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exfoliating glove
Have you tried these exfoliating gloves yet? Image Courtesy: Shutterstock
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Each time I open my social media handles, it feels like opening Pandora’s box of all sorts of skincare gadgets and products. Thanks to my curiosity about the beauty industry, my social feed looks like a series of skincare commercials. Amongst all the mystifying skincare stuff, my eyes always get fixated on ads for exfoliating gloves. Also known as bath gloves, these work just like a wearable loofah but better. The commercial keeps me hooked on the layers of dead skin cells rolling off from the body which are gross and satisfying at the same time. But each time I spot them, the mystery of their safety on skin remains. I needed answers.

To get some valid reasoning and how these work on skin, for better or bad, Health Shots spoke to Dr Dipak Patel, M.D, Aesthetic Dermatologist, Neel Aesthetics and laser clinic, Surat.

Are there any benefits of using these exfoliating gloves?

Dr Patel says, “Exfoliating gloves, a type of mechanical exfoliation, are designed to remove dead skin cells from the body. Alongside that, they stimulate and improve blood circulation, and encourage cell renewal. One may add a cleanser or shower gel to the glove to wash and exfoliate simultaneously while in shower.”

But, are they for everyone?

“Physical exfoliators are harsh on skin as compared to other types of scrubs and chemical exfoliators. This confines them to be used only by people with normal skin. Ones with the sensitive skin should steer clear of these bath gloves as they may cause permanent scarring over time,” suggests Dr Patel.

bikini body
We may not even realize, but over exfoliating body with these exfoliating gloves may cause more harm than good. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

What are the disadvantages of using exfoliating gloves?

  1. Exfoliation gloves may not be right for every person. Some skin types like dry, sensitive, or acne-prone skin may not react well.
  2. Over exfoliation breaks down the skin’s barrier and can create micro cracks in the skin causing redness and inflammation in the skin.
  3. Even ladies with normal skin should avoid going overboard with them. You can safely use them once a week and don’t forget to keep your movements gentle.
  4. Clean and wash the gloves after every usage. Leave them someplace dry between uses to prevent bacteria buildup.

In conclusion, exfoliating gloves are safe and effective means of skin exfoliation for most people. Removing dead skin can help the moisturiser and body lotion to penetrate the skin better. It adds value in your body care routine by providing improved hydration and enhancing the absorption of skin care products.

body care routine
Your body needs some exfoliation, cleansing and moisturising too! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

What are some alternatives to these exfoliating gloves?

  1. A sugar and oat scrub is gentle on your skin than any other exfoliant. One may also use chickpea flour to gently rub off the dead skin cells and unveil a glowing skin.
  2. Gentle cleanser for bathing can be used in sensitive skin types followed by moisturiser and sunscreen. In any case, one needs to moisturise the skin well after exfoliation.
  3. According to Dr Patel, “Chemical exfoliation as prescribed by a dermatologist according to the skin is advised like salicylic acid, lactic acid, glycolic acid and other AHA and BHA in mild percentages.”
  4. Some in clinic procedures like microdermabrasion, chemical peeling helps in controlled exfoliation especially on the face.

Shifa Khan Shifa Khan

An aesthete and a skincare junkie, Shifa spends most of her time cooking delish food while wearing a sheet mask. At HealthShots, she creates high-octane content that can leave you all a little intrigued!

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