Skin Expert Dr Ross Perry Explains Exfoliation

02 Aug 2021 | Category: Cosmetic

As seen in The Independent

Dr Ross Perry provided his expert advice for The Independent for their investigation into exfoliation techniques and the potential benefits for your skin. 

Exfoliation is a well-established method of sloughing away the dead skin cells and grime that can build up on the surface of the skin.

Dr Ross Perry, founder of Cosmedics Skin Clinics and renowned skin guru, told The Independent:

“Exfoliating helps to remove dead skin cells from the outer layer of your skin and should be a key part of your skin care regime.

“It’s important to exfoliate the skin because, as we age, our skin’s natural ability to shed skin cells slows down – which can lead to dull, flaky and congested looking skin.

“The dead skin cells left on the skin can inhibit other products working, so regular exfoliating gives the skin a good base for make-up.”

Types of exfoliation

There are a few different ways of exfoliating the skin. Dr Perry explained:

“Mechanical exfoliation involves physically scrubbing your skin’s surface with a scrub, dry brush, or another exfoliating skin care tool.

“Chemical exfoliation, meanwhile, involves the use of salicylic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids or enzymes to chemically break down surface build-up.”

Chemical exfoliators

As well as professional chemical peels, there are now many face creams and cleansers that are formulated to include exfoliating ingredients that exfoliate the face more gently with regular use. Dr Perry goes on to explain the key ingredients in chemical exfoliators:

“Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHA’s) will help to smooth the skin and unclog blocked pores, while BHA’s (beta-hydroxy acids) help to reduce breakouts, control excess oil on the skin and help with inflammation.

“For acne-prone skin, look for an exfoliator containing salicylic acid as it helps to penetrate deep into the skin’s surface. If you’ve got sensitive skin, look for products containing fruit extracts such as pumpkin, papaya and pineapple, as these products help to break down dead skin cells without causing irritation.”

How often should you exfoliate?

This depends on the individual, as Dr Perry explains:

“Some people can handle exfoliating the skin every two to three days, and for others it’s more a case of just once a week. It’s important to see how your skin reacts to exfoliating the first time and go from there.”

For those with dry/tight skin, 1-2 times a week is more advisable:

“That’s because this skin type tends to be lacking in natural oils, so it isn’t necessary.”

He says that it’s important not to be too aggressive with exfoliation:

“Scrubbing too hard can damage the outer layer of the skin and people with sensitive skin can actually cause further breakouts if they’re exfoliating too frequently.”

Dos and don’ts exfoliating advice

When to exfoliate

“Only exfoliate the skin at night. This is because you’re essentially taking off the top layer of skin so you might feel a little sensitive. You’re also more susceptible to sun damage if you exfoliate during the day, so it’s important to allow the skin to repair itself overnight.”

Sunscreen after exfoliation

“This is a given year round, but skin will always be more prone to UV and environmental damage for a few days after exfoliating.”

How long to leave exfoliator on

“Don’t immediately rinse off a chemical exfoliator as it needs time to do its job and dissolve the dead skin cells. Try to wait at least 15 mins before gently rinsing it off.”

Top exfoliating ingredients

“You should also look for products containing alpha hydroxy acids, which are best for dry and sun-damaged skin, and appear under the ingredients glycolic acid and lactic acid.

“For acne-prone and oily skin opt for beta hydroxy acids, which are found in products that list salicylic acid as a main ingredient.”

Read this article in full at

Non-Surgical Treatments for Better Skin

In terms of professional treatments, there are a number of non-surgical procedures that can be beneficial in rejuvenating the skin. Many of these stimulate the skin’s own renewal processes, including collagen and elastin production; which leads to firmer, tighter skin. Potential options to consider include:

Dr Ross Perry

doctor ross perry

Dr Ross Perry is Founder and Medical Director of Cosmedics Skin Clinics.

He qualified at Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospital Medical School in 1994. His career includes NHS skin cancer reconstruction, work as a GP, as well as private cosmetic skin treatments.

He established Cosmedics Skin Clinics in 2003 and remains in charge as Medical Director. He is best known for dealing with unwanted skin lesions and blemishes (e.g. moles, cysts, warts, skin tags) and natural-looking use of non-surgical cosmetic injections (BOTOX® Anti-Wrinkle Injections and Facial Fillers) and advanced laser treatments.

He regularly advises the press on health matters and has special expertise on matters relating to the skin.



Cosmedics Skin Clinics

Cosmedics Skin Clinics was established in 2003 and has built up an excellent reputation for cosmetic and medical skin treatments, carried out by GMC Registered Doctors.  The company offer a full range of cosmetic treatments, including popular lip enhancement and wrinkle relaxing injections, dermal fillers; plus medical treatments including mole removal, thread vein treatment and excessive sweating injections.

Cosmedics Skin Clinics has a team of skin treatment doctors and surgeons in their 5 skin clinics across London and Bristol led by Dr Ross Perry.

Call 020 7386 0464 or email to book an appointment.


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