Editors’ Picks: Exfoliators For Softer, Brighter Skin


With winter’s cold, dry air battering our skin daily, we need more than just moisturizer to keep our complexions soft. These exfoliating products, which help shed skin’s dulling top layer, are currently at the top of our list.

Wendy Rodewald, Senior Editor
Avène Cleanance Mask ($15, drugstore.com)
This five-minute mask is the ultimate skin slougher. Not only does it contain two types of chemical exfoliants (glycolic acid and salicylic acid) to help shed dead cells and clear out pores, it has grainy beads to buff away what’s left behind. I use it once a week in the shower, and my skin is amazingly soft by the time I wash it off. Plus, even though it’s made for oily complexions, it’s gentle on my shiny-but-sensitive skin.

Megan Segura, Associate Editor
Perricone MD Blue Plasma ($95, sephora.com)
I’ve been trying a lot of different forms of exfoliation lately. I’ve tried the hand-held devices, I’ve used the scrubs, but my most recent find doesn’t involve either of those things. The Blue Plasma goes on like a serum, but it uses salmon egg enzymes (anything for beauty, right?) to slough off dead skin cells, as well as antioxidants from blueberries to brighten the face. While it may work like a peel, the formula is super gentle, so you can use it every day.

Shannon Farrell, Editorial Assistant 
Riiviva Microderm ($299, Riiviva.com)
This winter I have had super sensitive skin, so I’ve been hesitant to introduce any new peel or scrub to my routine. Instead I’ve turned to Riivia, one of the newest at-home microdermabrasion systems, and the first to incorporate the same diamond tip used by dermatologists. What I like best about the hand-held device is the control I have. With three levels of diamond tips, the process can be as light on my skin as I want. And as glowy and even as my skin was after a microdermabrasion session with a dermatologist, let’s just say this is the closest I can get without spending $75 a pop every time I want those effects.