Skincare Benefits of Glycolic Acid
Do you ever wonder why some people spend time in the same temperature as you, but their skin stays clear with a Korean glow all year round? The answers to each question related to glowing skin lie in one super ingredient - Glycolic Acid. However, glycolic acid is an incredible ingredient for getting well-cleared, healthy, glowing, and radiant skin all year round.
Are you wondering what glycolic acid does for the skin? Well, glycolic acid is a mineral that chemically exfoliates the skin by disintegrating dead skin cells and oils. It may even enhance your collagen production and support skin moisture. So stay tuned with us to level up your skincare routine with glycolic acid to protect your skin from the most common foe, "acne."
So, What is Glycolic Acid?
Glycolic acid is a natural compound directly derived from certain fruits, beets, and sugarcane. It belongs to the family of alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), one of the most popular materials in skin care products.
However, glycolic acid is the lightest molecular weight among all acids, and in its pure form, it is colorless, making it easier to exfoliate the skin to provide maximum benefits. Most cosmetic and pharmaceutical products contain glycolic acid to improve skin health or enhance skin texture and appearance.
Whether you're facing oily or acne-prone skin, dry skin, dull complexions, sun-damaged skin, or mature skin, glycolic acid is an ideal ingredient to add to your skincare routine. It boosts seborrhoea on young or oily skin and enhances mature or dry skin based on the amount of glycolic acid.
Please note that excessive amounts of glycolic acid may sometimes irritate sensitive skin.
Properties Contained in Glycolic Acid
Glycolic acid contains the following properties:
ExfoliativeGlycolic acid is the smallest and lightest acid, making it easier to penetrate the outermost layer of skin cells and old by dissolving them. Despite the other human-made exfoliants, like face scrubs and brushes, you don't have to scrub harshly while using glycolic acid.
HumectantGlycolic acid is a humectant that reduces the skin's moisture and binds water to skin cells. It boosts the synthesis of glycosaminoglycans, which draws water into the skin.
AntibacterialAccording to research, at specific concentrations, glycolic acid can prevent the growth of bacteria.
Anti-agingIt also prevents the process of skin aging by enhancing fine wrinkles and improving the skin's tone and texture. For instance, it reduces sun damage and enhances collagen and hyaluronic acid production in the skin.
Skin Benefits of Glycolic Acid
Studies indicate that glycolic acid may help with the following:
Prevent Fine Lines and WrinklesGlycolic acid prevents fine lines and wrinkles by exfoliating the top layer of the skin. It boosts the skin cell renewal process and collagen production and improves the skin's natural ability to bind water to the skin. Apart from penetrating dead skin cells, glycolic acid removes the dead cells and flattens the skin's layers, beneficial to making wrinkles less noticeable.
Hydrates SkinHydrated skin is ideal for healthy or glowing skin, and glycolic acid contains a humectant that reduces the skin's moisture and binds water to skin cells.
Improve the Skin GlossinessAs mentioned above, glycolic acid is the tiniest molecule penetrating the outermost skin layer and removing dead skin cells. It helps you to get fresh, baby-soft skin that is bright, smooth, and radiant.
Prevents HyperpigmentationIf you're facing hyperpigmentation, you may consider using glycolic acid regularly to fade mild hyperpigmentation, such as dark and age spots. However, hyperpigmentation is caused by an increase in melanin. It is the natural pigment that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color. Glycolic acid helps to remove the darker skin cells from the outermost layer of skin to reveal a fresh layer of even skin.
Fights AcneGlycolic acid is an incredible skincare ingredient that helps prevent acne and enhance your skin's appearance. It is an effective acne treatment because of its ability to unclog pores and lessen the production of comedones (blackheads and whiteheads). It may also improve the inflammation and redness associated with acne breakouts.
Allows penetration of ingredientsGlycolic acid contains several skincare properties to increase skin cell renewals and allow deeper exfoliation of the skin to provide maximum benefits. Glycolic acid is the lightest molecular weight among all acids making it easier to exfoliate the skin and give you faster results.
UV DamageSun UV rays can affect the skin and may cause skin damage, and the visible symptoms of this include:
Based on the research, glycolic acid is an ideal treatment for sun damage to the skin. It also contains properties that may be effective against the Sun's UV rays, which may help reduce photoaging.
Possible concerns with Glycolic Acid
All chemicals or mechanical exfoliants have some possible concerns. They include the following:
UV DamageAHAs may prevent the damage caused by the Sun's UV rays. To prevent the damage, AHAs have to remove the top layer of skin cells. That may leave the skin cells underneath vulnerable to further sun damage. So, applying sunscreen regularly before going outside may be necessary if you're using glycolic acid.
Irritation While using skincare products that contain glycolic acid, people usually don't complain about the side effects. For "those with dry or sensitive skin, it can be irritating, and they may experience:
If you're facing any symptoms mentioned above while using glycolic acid, wash the products off and discontinue use. The Worst side effects people can experience are due to:
- Redness or inflammation
- Uncareful use of a higher percentage of glycolic acid products.
- They use it too frequently.
- Apply near the eyes.
HyperpigmentationPlease note that people with darker skin should be aware that excessive use of glycolic acid may lead to hyperpigmentation. Darker skin is rich in melanin, and minor irritations like redness and peeing may trigger an inflammatory response, which may tend to hyperpigmentation.
Glycolic acid is an incredible skincare ingredient. Most cosmetic and pharmaceutical companies use glycolic acid in their products to improve skin health. But, the excessive use of products that contain glycolic acid may lead to side effects that can burn or scar skin. It is advisable to use glycolic acid prescribed by a dermatologist.