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Home>Blog>The Best Scrub-Free Facial Exfoliants

The Best Scrub-Free Facial Exfoliants

MIRA BEAUTY • updated Dec 15, 2020
The Best Scrub-Free Facial Exfoliants

Shop our favorite non-abrasive exfoliators for glowing skin

Regular exfoliation can help prevent clogged pores, resulting in fewer breakouts (yes, please). And let's face it, there's something truly satisfying and invigorating about polishing away dead skin cells and impurities - and eyeing up your squeaky-clean face in the mirror, are we right?

Other benefits include increased circulation, clear and minimized pores, and even skin tone. Plus, the removal of dead, dry skin increases your skin's radiance, clarity, and youthfulness.

Plus, long-term exfoliating can increase collagen production - and we love the sound of that - since collagen is key to healthy, radiant skin. But if you're not a fan of super-gritty exfoliants, or just want to give your skin a break from extreme scrubs, we have you covered, here. Read on, to learn about our favorite scrub-free facial exfoliants.

Philosophy, The Microdelivery Exfoliating Facial Wash, $44

philosophy The Microdelivery Exfoliating Facial Wash
Source: Philosophy


Here’s your daily dose of knowledge: You absolutely do not need a harsh exfoliator to get the job done. In fact, some of the best facial exfoliants are gentle and scrub-free. Take this beauty, here, by Philosophy - it’s ideal for all skin types, including sensitive and aging skin. Gentle enough for daily use, it’s free of parabens, sulfates, and phthalates. It’s specially formulated with micro-exfoliating beads to gently polish and scrub away impurities. Plus, the award-winning microdelivery cleansing mini peel works in just 30 seconds to reveal a smoother, brighter, and more even complexion. MIRA Community users say, “this is a great exfoliating wash for sensitive skin! After you wash it off, your skin is so soft and the texture is smooth!”

Tatcha, The Rice Polish Foaming Enzyme Powder, $65

Tatcha The Rice Polish Foaming Enzyme Powder
Source: Tatcha

‌‌We get it. You want exfoliated, polished skin that glows, minus a harsh, scratchy scrub - us too. Polished Rice Enzyme Powder by Tatcha is one of your best bets. This tried-and-true formula is created with rice and papaya enzymes to deliver a creamy foam that softens and gently exfoliates. The secret is in Hadasei-3™ - a trio of anti-aging Japanese superfoods green tea, rice, and algae - that all promote youthful radiance. In addition to cleansing, this non-abrasive formula also combats uneven skin tone and hyperpigmentation. Take note: the heart of the geisha’s beauty ritual is daily exfoliation to prep a smooth canvas for her performance makeup - this product brings that exact secret to the modern day beauty lover. Shop Korean Beauty on Mira Beauty.

Arcona, Cranberry Gommage, $48

Cranberry Gommage Arcona
Source: Arcona

‌Oh yum, this one smells just like a bursting berry fruit salad - and it's no wonder why: it's formulated with antioxidant-rich blueberry extract, along with cranberry and raspberry enzymes, that help cleanse the skin and minimize the appearance of pores. And the trio of exfoliants - volcanic minerals, sucrose, and salicylic acid - slough away dead skin. This purifying, gentle formula also unclogs enlarged, congested pores and improves skin tone. The fruit-infused product also contains jojoba beads to exfoliate, cleanse and stimulate circulation. Arcona Cranberry Gommage is ideal for all skin types -  luxuriate 4 times a week to see results that will wow.

Paula’s Choice, Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant, $29.50

Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant
Source: Paula's Choice

‌This non-abrasive exfoliator is ideal for all skin types, but especially those prone to wrinkles, or redness. Paula’s Choice’s philosophy is "smart, safe beauty” - and we couldn’t agree more with the performance of this special product - I mean, it’s not touted as a cult favorite and ranked #1 worldwide for nothing. Beta hydroxy acid mimics the natural exfoliation process of younger skin by helping it shed extra layers, while unclogging and clearing pores - all minus the harsh grit of scrubs. But it’s the leave-on formula that makes this product a stand-out - use this lightweight liquid product once a day, for quick, long-lasting results.

First Aid Beauty, Facial Radiance Polish, $25

First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Polish
Source: First Aid

‌Gently exfoliate, illuminate, and purify with First Aid Facial Radiance Polish. The name in itself, sounds like it's on a mission to rescue your skincare routine - and it is. This daily exfoliating and brightening facial polish cleanses the skin, leaving it clear, soft, and nurtured. The key players hard at work, are shea butter, willow bark extract, and shea shell powder. These 3 super ingredients remove dead skin cells to reveal visibly brighter and smoother skin and improves the look of pores and texture. This thirst-quenching product also moisturizes to the max by supporting the skin's barrier.  

Murad, AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser, $40

Murad Exfoliating Cleanser
Source: Murad

‌The pearly white cream by Murad looks as luxurious, as it feels. The product is spiked with a cocktail of acid exfoliants (salicylic, lactic, and glycolic) and mini jojoba bead granules (you can barely feel them, hence, the benefits of a no-scrub facial exfoliant). It also contains jojoba oil, a moisture-retaining ingredient that seals your skin with a protective barrier to keep it from losing its luster. Another bonus - jojoba oil combats oxidative stress caused by everyday exposure to pollutants and other toxins. The results are instant too - your skin will feel super smooth immediately after cleansing. The brand's founder, Dr. Howard Murad said it best: “Skincare is not superficial because it is healthcare. When you have beautiful skin it is a sign that you have a healthy body and mind.”

Renee Rouleau, Mint Buffing Beads, $34.50

Renee Rouleau Mint Buffing Beads
Source: Renee Rouleau

Mint Buffing Beads by Renée Rouleau is an exfoliating facial scrub that polishes away dullness, dryness - and reduces clogged pores and bumps. Renée Rouleau has dedicated 30+ years to the art of skin perfection. She’s considered a complexion coach and blemish-busting hero by many thanks to her magical touch and ability to make skin concerns quickly disappear - and this product does just that. Jojoba esters are gentle, natural micro beadlets that effectively polish the skin, Vitamin E, an antioxidant, protects damaged cells, while invigorating peppermint oil increases circulation by bringing fresh nutrients to the skin to encourage brightness. Unlike harsh natural grain scrubs, which can scratch and irritate the skin, Rouleau's face exfoliating formula uses perfectly round particles (jojoba beads) to gently glide across the skin.

Jan Marini Clean Zyme Face Cleanser, $40

Jan Marini Bioglycolic Face Cleanser
Source: Jan Marini

The papaya enzyme exfoliant is silky smooth and offers immediate results. Here's how it works: the enzyme breaks up skin debris and dead skin cells, promoting healthy skin repair. It's no-scrub formula polishes the complexion for a radiant, beautiful appearance. Jan Marini's Bioglycolic Face Cleanser boasts an exfoliating formula that helps clear clogged pores and prepares skin for other treatment products. It's ideal if you're looking to rejuvenate  your skin, fight acne, diminish hyperpigmentation, and reduce the appearance of facial scarring. Oh and the yummy scent doesn't disappoint - that is, if you're a fan of sweet and sour, fresh green apple.

Find your next favorite scrub free exfoliator on MIRA BEAUTY today.