Gommage exfoliators and why they’re way better than physical scrubs

Don’t we all love it when the international skincare trends fly our way? The Koreans added eight more steps to our routine, the Chinese gave us the wonderful Gua Sha, and the French brought us the concept of thermal water. Yet again, the French have now brought a gentle form of exfoliation into our routines called gommage. Doesn’t it just roll off your tongue? Gommage. Well, gommage literally translates to ‘erase’ and is a popular method used to get rid of all those dead skin cells.

The Two Dimensions Of Exfoliation

Exfoliation is sacrosanct in every skincare routine, no matter what your skin type. Other than sloughing all the dead skin off you, it plays an important role in how well and effectively your skincare products work. The moment that lifeless layer of skin is removed, your products will start to work far more efficiently. This leaves your skin happy, deep cleansed, and radiant.

Step into the realm of at-home exfoliation, where there are two dimensions –– physical and chemical. Physical exfoliators are loud abrasive fighters –– they go by their OG name ‘scrub’, where they literally scrub away your dead skin. Millennials, gen x, and baby boomers will know that these exfoliators in their hay day were super abrasive and could possibly cause microtears.

Chemical exfoliators, on the other hand, are the silent workers –– they do the job without making any noise. Chemical exfoliants go deeper than the surface and use their powers to help in cell turnover. This includes peels that don’t just smoothen the texture of your skin, but also help tackle other skin conditions.

Now, onto gommage

Up until now nothing was ever gentle AND exfoliating –– these two functions were contradictory. Following the ‘do no harm’ mantra of French skincare, gommage does exactly what exfoliators are meant to do, without stripping your skin’s natural barrier. Due to the sudden viral ‘peel’ trends, at-home chemical peels have become the thing to try –– and the ‘Gram’mers don’t know how damaging it can be.

What to look out for in a gommage exfoliator?

Gommage is carried out by using both active enzymes, as well as mechanical exfoliation (gently massaging the product into your skin) to get it working. The enzymes work double-time to break down and remove dead skin cells. It involves a creamy-esque paste or gel that’s applied to your skin. Look out for enzymes that are plant based –– the most common ones include papain (found in a papaya plant), bromelain (found in pineapples) and so on. Gommage exfoliants also contain xanthan gum or paraffin –– sticky ingredients exfoliate the skin by holding on to your dead skin cells when it’s taken off and making sure they leave your skin.

Who is it suited for?

Everyone can use this one, including people with sensitive skin. Most exfoliants are often harsh on the skin, especially if it tends to flare up at the drop of a hat. Gommage is a less abrasive alternative to exfoliate –– and is perfect for sensitive skin.

How to apply?

Step 1 - Apply a thin layer of gel or paste to your skin when it’s dry.
Step 2 - Leave it on for 15-30 seconds.
Step 3 - And then, begin massaging the product into your skin and gently scrubbing it in circular motions.
Step 4 - Rinse away with water and finish off with a moisturiser.
Note - Avoid applying it to any active breakouts as it may spread bacteria and cause you to break out more.

If you’re looking for a gentler way to exfoliate your skin, then why not work the gommage Shangpree Fresh Peeling Mask into your pre-masking routine on your next #FaceMaskFriday night. Formulated with Lactobionic Acid, Birch Sap, and a Herb Complex, it helps exfoliate the dead skin cells, boosts circulation, and promotes cell turnover. It leaves your skin looking brighter, smoother, and absolutely rejuvenated. Remember, an exfoliator should never dry your skin out –– and keeping that in mind, this particular gommage exfoliator contains ingredients like Sodium Hyaluronate to help maintain the moisture levels of your skin and strengthen its natural barrier.

Exfoliating sounds harsh and it could be if not done correctly. Gommage makes this process far more gentle, while providing the same results (if not better)!