Microbead Ban: Three Alternatives To Exfoliating Acne-Prone Skin Without Plastic Microbeads

Posted on October 02, 2014 by Rachel Duran

Exfoliating scrub with lavendar and coconut

Rachel DuranThe scrubbing grit in many cosmetics, known as microbeads, are polluting the Great Lakes and other bodies of water. This realization has environmentalists, manufacturers, lawmakers, and fans of exfoliation all lathered up. 

In fact, they have been banned in Illinois and other states are likely to follow suit.

Skincare companies began adding the tiny plastic beads to cleansing products as a budget-friendly alternative to natural exfoliants. But now the seemingly innocent beads are endangering wildlife and our water. 

If your acne care routine is big on buffing and brightening don’t fret—there are alternative skin-soothing scrubs, peels, and products to suit your skin’s fancy without harming the lakes and seas. Here are three ways to exfoliate—for clear skin with a conscience.

1. Konjac Sponge

Ok, so we’re biased, but there are numerous reasons Arithmetic has decided to sell the Konjac Exfoliating Sponge. Cultivated in Japan, this all-natural exfoliator has been used in Asia for millennia.

The konjaku root fiber is Incredibly soft. It unclogs pores and gently removes flakes and dullness without irritating even the most sensitive of skin undergoing treatment. Its activated bamboo charcoal draws out impurities and minimizes pores, too.

2. Chemical Peeling

Chemical exfoliaters can be effective for some skin types, but may also be a bit harsh, especially for those treating their acne. Chemicals such as hydroxyl acids (Lactic Acid, Salicyclic Acid, and Glycolic Acid), Retinol (Vitamin A), and enzymes (Papin, Bromelain) stimulate cell turnover, sloughing off the dead cells and encouraging new, healthy skin to take its place.

Use with caution: these over-the-counter scrubs, masks, and peels promise a powerful, face-tingling experience but may cause flaking and redness.

3. Natural Grit

From sand and pumice, to walnut shells and kelp, physical exfoliators can be a great, natural way to renew your glow—as long as you pair these grainy products with a gentle touch.

The St. Ive’s Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub has been popular for years, but complexions battling acne may find the texture bothersome. Look for products that balance a fine grit with moisturizing ingredients, like Pangea’s Egyptian Geranium with Adzuki Bean & Cranberry Facial Scrub, which provides a deep cleanse without abrading or dehydrating.

  • Rachel Duran is an editor at Arithmetic
  • About Us: Arithmetic is a new skincare company focused on helping adults achieve clear, healthy skin





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