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Microdermabrasion is noninvasive procedure that sloughs off dead skin cells from the epidermis. The exfoliation process helps even out blotchy skin, alleviate wrinkles and stimulate blood circulation and collagen production. Most home microdermabrasion kits will usually come with a facial cleanser, a skin toner, an exfoliating cream, a spinning applicator, a moisturizer and a sunscreen lotion.
The facial cleanser in microdermabrasion kits will lift and whisk away accumulated dirt and surface oil, ensuring even skin exfoliation from the exfoliating cream. Many of these cleansers will come formulated with a mild acid, such as salicylic or glycolic acid. These acids work by removing dead skin that has built up, ensuring that the skin is prepped for the microdermabrasion process.
Some microdermabrasion kits will come with a liquid skin toner. Skin toners help calm irritated skin, normalize the skin pH levels and remove excessive sebum that can potentially interfere with the exfoliation process. The soothing effects stem from the anti-inflammatory ingredients contained in the skin toner. Liquid skin toners are usually massaged onto the skin with a cotton ball.
The exfoliating cream is the agent that will deliver the exfoliating action onto the skin. Most microdermabrasion kits will come with an exfoliating cream formulated with aluminum oxide crystals. Usually packaged in a jar, aluminum oxide crystals tend to have a gritty appearance and consistency. Some kits substitute aluminum oxide crystals for finely crushed salt or baking soda crystals.
Microdermabrasion kits come packaged with a spinning applicator that continuously spins the cream into the skin, subsequently exfoliating it. Some spinning applicators feature variable speed settings, allowing for comprehensive exfoliation on various areas of the body. Detachable heads are also a common feature in many spinning applicators, allowing for the replacement of dull spinning parts.
Moisturizers are usually included in microdermabrasion kits. Most moisturizers packaged in the microdermabrasion kit will act like an emollient or humectant, properly hydrating the newly resurfaced skin. The hydrating properties of the moisturizer can also help ward off mild redness from the exfoliating process.
Sunscreens are also included in most microdermabrasion kits. Manufacturers include sunscreens with various levels of protection. Sunscreens help protect the newly resurfaced skin from the harmful effects of ultraviolet rays. They work by chemically absorbing harmful ultraviolet A (UVA) rays or physically reflecting the rays with bits of zinc or titanium oxide. Some sunscreens have a mixture of ingredients, allowing for comprehensive coverage.