Hydration Is Just As Important As Exfoliation

Let’s talk about a topic that doesn’t get enough attention, the equal importance of hydration and exfoliation. It’s easy to get caught up in wanting to exfoliate, many people think Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate but the reality is that we need to be focusing on Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate too! People often think that a moisturizer doesn’t do much for your skin, but trust me they do, especially in conjunction with exfoliating acids! Both are essential in your skincare regimen for healthy, glowing skin. I’m going to break it down for you. ☺️

Let’s Talk Exfoliation

Exfoliation is essential for our skin and has great benefits. Exfoliation helps to unclog pores, removing dead skin cells and other debris that can accumulate on the skin’s surface, which reduces the likelihood of breakouts and blackheads. Exfoliation also helps stimulate the production of collagen, which in return leaves our skin looking more youthful and plump. Exfoliation can enhance the effectiveness of other skincare products. By removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores, exfoliation can allow serums, moisturizers and other products penetrate deeper. Allowing for the active ingredients to be delivered deeper into the skin! 

Exfoliation doesn’t just mean scrubs and dermaplaning, exfoliation falls into two categories of physical and chemical exfoliants. RFA Exfoliating Scrub or getting a relaxing facial with dermaplaning would be physical exfoliation. RFA products that contain chemical exfoliants, Koji-C pads, Lux Pads, Forever Young Ret 50/100 to name a few. 


Over-exfoliation is actually common, especially in people who are new to medical grade exfoliating acids or those who have sensitive skin. Over exfoliating can cause your skin to become dry, red, inflamed, and flaky. This can exacerbate any skin condition you have, like increased pimples. Oftentimes it leads to stripping your skin of your natural oils, leaving it more susceptible to environmental stressors. At RFA if we notice your skin is over- exfoliated we coach you through a process called a “total skin reset” to help reset the skin’s hydration barrier and remove all exfoliants for 7-10 days. Once your skin has recovered, we will have you SLOWLY add your favorite pads or acids back into your routine.

How Often Should I Exfoliate?

Generally speaking, with the use of exfoliating products, you should start slowly and gradually increase over time as tolerated. If you are brand new to medical grease exfoliating acids, it could mean 1-3 times per week. A bonus to our complimentary customized skincare plans, we provide thorough instructions, for your skin type, on how often you should be using each product and we encourage frequent “skin check-ins”. 

Top Tips for Exfoliation

  • Exfoliation is best in moderation
  • Exfoliation is important in your weekly skincare routine 
  • Listen to your skin
  • Exfoliate 1-3x per week, less is more! 
  • Be gentle with exfoliation, use light pressure

Now, Let’s Talk Hydration

Hydration is KEY to happy, healthy skin! I always say, think of your moisturizer as giving your skin a big drink of water! Your skin is almost always thirsty. There is actually a lot of science behind hydration of the skin. When your skin is dehydrated, the proper enzyme activity cannot take place. DAILY hydration and moisturizing is essential. 

Serum or Moisturizer

At RFA we have hydrating serums and moisturizers, but how do you know what to use? Well, the answer is serums and moisturizers are both vital in your routine and we will help determine which one is best for your skin type and goals. RFA HA Peptide Serum is a non-negotiable in my routine. It is a serum that is suitable for all skin types, it is hydrating, soothing & oil-free. The Sodium Hyaluronate pulls moisture into the dermis to really lock in hydration and the added peptides help stimulate collagen production! I like to let it sit on my face while I brush my teeth and make sure it has time to really seep into my skin. This product helps balance out the drying effects of exfoliating pads!

My favorite moisturizer RFA product is our Hydralipid Moisturizer. This moisturizer is SO hydrating and really seals in the water for your skin. It has a 2:4:2 ratio of ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids, therefore it’s excellent for restoring the lipid barrier to the skin = AWESOME hydration! Combining these 2 products is like magic ☺️

A hydrating cleanser that is gentle on the skin is also really important, my favorite is our RFA Gentle Foaming Cleanser. Since I use my exfoliant acids at night time, this is a nice way to keep it gentle in the morning. A gentle cleanser is suggested to avoid stripping the skin and causing dehydration.


I’m also not just talking about products applied to your face, you need to make sure you are drinking PLENTY of water daily! A well-hydrated body keeps skin looking dewy and keeps you energized. Daily water intake helps maintain skin elasticity and helps with fine lines and wrinkles. Everyone’s daily water consumption is dependent on their body, but a good rule of thumb is to divide your weight in half and that would be the minimum number of ounces to drink. So if you weigh 130 lbs you should be drinking at least 65 ounces of water a day.

Putting It All Together

Overall takeaway? Your skincare routine should have a nice balance of exfoliation and hydration. Without exfoliation your skin isn’t able to shed those dead skin cells as well, thus it can be more difficult for your skin to absorb the hydration. Keeping the skin’s hydration barrier intact and moderate exfoliation helps maintain hydration in all layers of the skin’s surface. 

When done correctly, exfoliation leads to clearer, healthier skin, but when you get carried away, your favorite exfoliants have the potential to do more harm than good. I always recommend at least one day in between using different pads to focus on hydration, your skin will appreciate it!! If you’re only using exfoliating products and nothing for hydration or vice versa, your skin will suffer and you are doing your skin a disservice. We all want glowing, supple and hydrated skin, so remember balance! 

What’s amazing about using RFA products, all of our providers are experts in helping create a customized skincare plan for your skin and always there for support! We are with you through your skin journey, for all the times and changes.

Skin Care Is Not One Size Fits All

Remember, skincare is not one size fits all so it’s important to find what works best for you! I provide complimentary, custom regimens online! 

Whether you are looking for anti-aging, acne treatment, or even pregnancy-safe regimens – I can help! I help patients nationwide achieve their best skin by using medical-grade skincare. I love being able to reach and help people all over the country with the very same products I use daily in my practice. 

If you’re ready to start working towards healthier balanced skin today, fill out the form here. I’ll create a plan that fits your needs with product recommendations. RFA ships nationwide. What are you waiting for!? 🤍



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2 thoughts on “Hydration Is Just As Important As Exfoliation”

  1. I enjoyed this blog. I sometimes forget about the moisture part and do get stock in the exfoliation part. Thanks for a reminder.

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Racquel Frisella

Board Certified Nurse Practitioner & Aesthetic Specialist based in Saint Louis, Missouri

I work as a cosmetic injector and skincare specialist with 12 years of experience in the Aesthetic Industry. I see patients both in-office at Racquel Aesthetics for treatments as well as online for customized, complimentary skincare plans. I focus heavily on preventative and corrective injections, treatments, and skincare.  My career is my passion and I love to help people feel like the very best version of themselves. I am a wife and a mother of 3 beautiful children under the age of 3. I love all things beauty, fashion, and fitness. I am creating this site as a place to share my expertise on beauty, anti-aging, and skin while also giving a glimpse into my lifestyle as a mom, wife and lover of fitness!  


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