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What is desquamation?

Posted by Gemma Murari on
What is desquamation?

Desquamation is the natural process in which skin cells are created, sloughed away, and replaced.

The epidermis has four unique layers. Cells are produced in the lower layers of the epidermis, and travel upwards towards the stratum corneum, the top layer. Once cells arrive at the stratum corneum, they are no longer alive. The cells in the stratum corneum are very flat and tightly packed. These flat, dead cells are continuously shed as newer cells push their way to the surface. In this way, skin is constantly renewing itself.


Why is it important? 

Desquamation is an essential part of maintaining a healthy skin barrier to enable it to protect the body against external toxins and bacteria. Skin is the major barrier for all forms of environmental assault. Healthy barrier function protects the human body against infection, disease, natural toxins, and even UV radiation (although, SPF is a daily essential for us all).

In addition to these skin health benefits, skin with a normalised desquamation rate is brighter, less dull, less prone to fine lines and wrinkles, and less likely to develop blemishes & pigmentation.


Factors which reduce the speed of desquamation include:

  • Ageing
    • Our skin cycle increases in length as we age, contributing to dull appearance with fine lines and wrinkles
  • Acne-prone skin
    • In acne-prone skin, desquamation does not function correctly. Dead skin cells are shed less frequently, congesting pores and contributing to blemishes.
  • Lifestyle factors
    • Sleep, stress, smoking, nutrition can all reduce the speed of desquamation


How to increase desquamation with skincare products?

  • Exfoliating via active ingredients
    • Desquamation can be accelerated by introducing certain active ingredients to exfoliate the skin, including hydroxy acids - such as glycolic acid, lactic acid & mandellic acid. 

Our Radiance Ritual Resurfacing Treatment Mask contains a potent 12% AHA & BHA complex, of glycolic acid & salicylic acid - which is designed to improve the skin exfoliation process, to leave your skin revitalised, brighter & plumper. 

Get in touch if you have any questions via 

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