Our complete guide to just-add-water exfoliating powders

Slough off dead skin and help your cells turnover faster with these non-irritating and brightening exfoliating powders

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Few things are as satisfying as a squeaky clean face, but achieving that can be a challenge — especially if your skin freaks out when you go for the gritty scrubs and brushes. Good news: there’s a gentler way to ditch dead skin cells, and it comes in the form of a dry powder packed with ultra-fine exfoliators, such as rice powder, salt or sugar.

The just-add-water wonders help smooth things out, without the risk of scratching your skin. “Crushed kernels or nuts are famous ingredients in exfoliating cleansers, but they’re known for creating micro-tears,” says Dr. Julia Carroll, dermatologist at Toronto’s Compass Dermatology. “Rice powder is gentle and natural, and it absorbs oil.”

Carroll recommends that sensitive types exfoliate once a week, while oilier skin can handle two to three sessions. But most of all, listen to your skin. “Depending on the day or the state of your skin, you may just need a pinch of powder, and on other days, you may want to approach it like a procedure and add a lot.”

Below, seven exfoliating powders to try now.

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