If you are looking for a multi-benefit skincare ingredient, meet your new best friend: Glycolic Acid.

What is Glycolic Acid?

Glycolic Acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) derived from cane sugar. This carbon-containing molecule has a simple and small molecular size, and since glycolic acid, unlike many AHAs, has a small molecular structure, many dermatologists and estheticians favor it for helping make skin look and feel clear, soft, young and radiant.

What Does Glycolic Acid Do For My Skin?

Glycolic acid works in the same way as most other chemical exfoliants. When applied to the skin, it extricates the bonds of dead skin cells and causes the epidermis to loosen and slough them off. This is the exfoliation that gives a more even looking complexion.

Glycolic acid is a favorite ingredient for those who struggle with congested-looking skin. Unlike benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid, glycolic acid actually helps to moisturize instead of drying the skin out. This makes it an excellent choice for those who want to avoid the feeling of dry skin after using an exfoliant. 

How Often Should I Use Glycolic Acid?

In general, glycolic acid is a very safe and effective skincare ingredient. To keep your skin safe, though, there are a few things to know before using glycolic acid. Just like any active ingredient, gradually introducing active ingredients into your skincare routine is best. You can find this rockstar ingredient in just about any skincare product, from moisturizers to peels. CarmaBella Skincare offers glycolic acid as sugar cane extract in the Renewal BioActive Cleanser, a mild exfoliating face wash that can be used daily. When using a glycolic peel, start by using it one time a week and gradually increasing it up to 2-3 times a week. Proper sun protection is required when using glycolic acid in your skincare regimen. Like all alpha-hydroxy acids, glycolic acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. You don't want to undo all the good your glycolic acid is doing, and you definitely don't want to end up with a nasty sunburn, so wear an SPF of 30 or above.