Beauty Dictionary: G for Glycolic Acid

Glycolic acid is a form of alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that has exfoliating properties. Due to its relatively small molecular size, it is able to penetrate deep into pores to remove impurities and lift dead skin cells off the topmost layer of skin to reveal brighter skin, and aid in the absorption of skincare products which come after.

Most off-the-counter products contains about five to 10 per cent glycolic acid which do well enough to exfoliate skin gently. Dermatologists use about 30 to 40 per cent glycolic acid which are usually only left on the skin for about two to three minutes to work its magic.

It’s a good idea to leave products containing glycolic acid for use in the night as it makes skin more sensitive to sun damage. If you’re using it during the day, remember to apply sunscreen to avoid UV damage.

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