Enzymes are an aesthetician’s best friend.
Enzymes are effective for all skin types including sensitive, fragile, acneic, pigmented, sun-damaged, textured, premature aging, and every skin issue in between. They are designed to be used with or without steam and can elevate any facial experience. Enzymes are one of my favorite steps in a facial.
When you are 18, your skin proliferates on its own every two weeks. As we get older, that proliferation process slows down naturally to every 3-4 weeks. Our skin becomes sluggish and needs a boost. Using enzymes helps keep the proliferation process on a proper time schedule so you do not have the buildup that makes your skin yellowish, sallow, and gray.
Enzymes have a non-abrasive, proteolytic effect that induces superficial cellular exfoliation of the stratum corneum. Think PAC-MAN, chomping away or digesting all your dull skin cells (corneocytes) on the surface. Your skin becomes thickened with dead skin cells, oil, makeup, dirt, and grim. It forms a type of “glue” that needs to be broken down and enzymes rise to the task. They are gentle but highly effective if used properly. They can be combined with AHA’s like lactic, glycolic, kogic, or malic acid for a more intense response or other ingredients that support their task. Some popular enzymatic ingredients are Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Enzyme Powder, (Carica papaya) Papain, Cucurbita (Pumpkin) Enzyme, Bromelain, cherry, and blueberry.
Exfoliation is key to smooth skin but don’t over-exfoliate. Avoid exfoliating either too often or with chemicals too harsh for the skin. Over-exfoliation can lead to other issues that would need to be addressed. It’s not necessary to over-exfoliate! (I did this once with a 70% glycolic peel and I broke out with whiteheads for 1 month!!) Unless you have a serious skin concern like pigmentation or grade 3-4 acne, monthly facials with enzymes will leave your skin healthier, thicker, and more buoyant, less fragile, or compromised.
My love affair for enzymes in the treatment room allows me to successfully perform a facial with favorable results. Some of my favorite enzymes come from pumpkin, cherries, pineapple, and papaya, but enzymes can be coupled with other ingredients to kick up your level of glow to brilliant! Think Edward Cullen sparkling in the sun from Twilight! For example, cranberry fruit ferment, kojic acid, and pomegranate enzymes can also give you bright skin while breaking down the proteins accumulated on the skin’s surface that cause your skin to look sallow and uneven. I love enzymes because they are versatile, smell amazing, and do not damage the skin if used correctly.
While most enzymes are for professional use only, there are at-home exfoliating options including chemical and manual exfoliants available through yudoyu. I also use a custom 20% lactic acid during my facials which boosts all the enzyme therapy without over-exfoliating or stripping the skin.
Learning what is best for you is fun and exciting. You can keep an arsenal of exfoliants for different occasions and moods. Learn how to use them and enjoy! I sure do!