What Does Glycolic Acid Can Do To Your Skin? - AlQudrahMC

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What Does Glycolic Acid Can Do To Your Skin?

What Does Glycolic Acid Can Do To Your Skin?

by Shankari Das · May 9, 2022

Glycolic acid is a water-soluble alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) prepared from sugar cane. Do you know that it is one of the most widely used AHAs in skin care products?

These AHAs are natural acids that come directly from plants. They usually consist of tiny molecules that your skin can easily absorb. Hence this property makes them ideal for smoothing fine lines and improving skin texture. Therefore it is extensively used in several anti-aging products.


How Does Glycolic Acid Work?

Do you know that glycolic acid has the smallest-sized molecules among all the AHAs. This feature allows glycolic acid to get absorbed into the skin. Hence it can exfoliate it even better than other AHAs.

Glycolic acid works by speeding up your cell turnover when you apply them. The acid can dissolve the bonds that hold your skin cells together. In effect, its use allows your skin to shed dead skin cells more rapidly than it would on its own.

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The acid has numerous benefits for your skin. Here we take a closer look at glycolic acid and how the acid can help with your skin care. It also includes several tips that will allow you to choose the right product for your skin and tips to use the products safely.

The acid triggers your skin when you use the product, thus producing more collagen. Collagen in your skin is generally the protein that makes your skin plump, firm, and elastic. Collagen also gives your connective tissues and bones their strength.

As you age, your skin will make less collagen. When you spend too much time in the sun, the collagen gets destroyed. Therefore, when you use glycolic acid each day, it can help prevent collagen breakdown.


What Glycolic Acid Does for Your Skin?

When it comes to glycolic acid benefits, the list is very long. It is an exfoliant. It helps shed dead skin cells and reveal your newer, brighter layers underneath. The acid acts on your stratum corneum – the outermost layer of the skin is tightly packed with layers of dead skin cells bonded tightly.

The acid can loosen these bonds. Once dissolved by glycolic acid, those rough, tough layers of dead skin cells can easily slough away.

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But because the acid is so small, it gets deeper into your skin. The acid stimulates fibroblasts in your dermis to produce increased amounts of collagen. Therefore, stimulating collagen production can help your skin feel firmer and minimize fine lines and wrinkles.
Between the simple action on your stratum corneum and the acid’s work below, your skin starts to feel smoother, more radiant, and even-toned.

Benefits of Glycolic Acid

Hope you know that it is a vital treatment for many reasons:

1 Anti-aging: The acid smooths fine wrinkles and improves your skin’s tone and texture.
2 Hydration: It plumps your skin and prevents it from getting dry.
3 Sun damage: The acid fades dark patches, often caused by sun damage. Thus protecting your skin’s collagen from the sun.
4 Complexion: It can even brighten your skin when you use it regularly.
5 Exfoliation: The acid can prevent ingrown hairs and makes pores appear smaller. As a result, it helps your skin shed dead skin cells.
6 Acne: The acid cleans out clogged pores to prevent blackheads, and inflamed breakouts.

Although you might have seen many sources that claim glycolic acid can help get rid of scars. But this is one thing it simply can not do.

Yes, but this acid can lighten dark patches left by acne or other wounds on your skin. The acid may even soften the look of raised scars and pitted scars. But remember that it will not make them go away.

Remember that better treatment for scars is either a professional strong glycolic acid peel or a different scar treatment altogether.

Glycolic acid consists of tiny molecules that the human skin absorbs very well. It will protect collagen and help your skin shed dead skin cells. Moreover, the process can smooth and brighten your skin. Thus keeping your pores clean. Finally, preventing ingrown hairs and acne.


Choosing the Right Skin Treatment

The glycolic acid treatment you choose should solely depend on your skin type and end goals. The commonly found OTC products with glycolic acid might be enough to give you radiant, brighter, and more healthy-looking skin.

When you choose any type of glycolic acid treatment, the percent of acid it contains is just one factor to consider. Another important aspect is the product’s pH. Meaning the more acidic a product is, the more effective and stronger it may have on your skin despite how much acid it contains.

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Using its products may be enough to reduce fine lines and prevent breakouts without the need for stronger pro peels. All professional skin peels might be a good option to treat a specific skin issue.
For example, professional peels may help with sun damage, dark spots, acne, or deeper wrinkles. You can achieve better results more quickly. But because most of these peels contain a higher percentage of glycolic acid, they might carry a risk of irritation too.

Therefore, when you choose any glycolic acid treatment, you should check the acid content and the pH level. Therefore, most skincare products list the percent of glycolic acid used. They generally are not required to list the pH. This data actually makes it a bit harder to compare products.

To summarize, most OTC skin care products contain roughly 10 percent glycolic acid and hence could be a good option for your daily skin care. However, pro peels have up to 70 percent glycolic acid. Thus, they can quickly reduce stubborn acne, deep wrinkles, and sun damage.

Where Can You Find It

If you search for glycolic acid, you may have tons of choices. You can find it in many over-the-counter (OTC) products. Try your local drug store, supermarket, market, or skin spa. You will find plenty of masks, cleansers, moisturizers, and toners that contain this acid – with different strengths of up to 10 percent.

For more potent treatments, use glycolic acid in chemical peels. Light glycolic acid can peel up to 30 percent strength – your esthetician might use it at the skin spa or salon. Your dermatologist can use stronger peels of up to 70 percent.


How to Use Glycolic Acid Safely

Most glycolic acid products in the market are safe for your skin. To keep your skin safe, there are a few things to know before using.

First and foremost, you must wear sunscreen whenever you use glycolic acid treatments. Probably because – like all AHAs, the acid might make your skin more sensitive to the sun. You do not want to undo all the good your the acid is doing, nor do you want to have your skin sunburnt.

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You should give your skin time to get used to glycolic acid. If you are using OTC products, start off by applying it only thrice a week. If your skin is not red or irritated, you can increase the frequency.

For the next few weeks, slowly build up until you can use it every day. If at any point the skin becomes irritated or red, give your skin a rest before continuing again.

For in-office or in-salon peels, you should start with a lower amount of acid. If your skin tolerates that well, you might increase to higher strengths for your subsequent peels.

Note that your skin might feel a bit rough immediately after the first few treatments. It is normal and only means that the glycolic acid is working. After a few weeks, you will notice smoother, more healthy skin.


FAQs on Glycolic Acid

What does glycolic acid do to your face? Do you know that the acid works wonders to exfoliate the skin? It is probably possible because it speeds up cell turnover, thus boosting collagen production.

The acid clears pores, improving skin tone, smoothing fine wrinkles, and fading dark patches. It can even hydrate your skin for a more youthful appearance.

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More FAQs below:

Is it safe to use glycolic acid every day?

Not at first because the acid might irritate your skin. It may take a while for your skin to get used to it. According to experts, you should start by applying it thrice a week. If your skin is not irritated or red, you may use it four times the following week. Slowly increase the number of days – as your skin begins to tolerate it. If your skin becomes irritated, you may take a break from using it until the irritation and redness clear.

Does glycolic acid treat scars?

It is a common question. Despite several marketing claims, there is no scientific evidence to support the use of glycolic acid to eliminate scars. In reality, the acid might help soften the appearance of your scars, but it will not make them disappear completely.

What should you know before using glycolic acid?

It is interesting to know that this acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. Therefore, it is essential to wear sunscreen outdoors when using the acid.

It is important to note that you should not use topical glycolic acid and retinoids at the same time. In fact, try avoiding other products that may rapidly exfoliate your skin while using the acid. If you currently see a dermatologist, talk to them before using any glycolic products.
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Glycolic acid professional peels and OTC products have been popular for a long time. They have a safe track record and can work wonders on your skin. Most skin types can use them without much trouble.

However, if you are among those who have very sensitive skin, you may want to stick with wash-off the acid products such as cleansers. As they are less likely to bother your skin. The acid may also allow your skin to build up a tolerance that will not irritate your skin.

As you might be aware, glycolic acid is a common ingredient in most OTC and regular skin care products, often found in anti-aging products. The acid may support collagen production, protects your skin against sun damage, and prevents clogged pores.

If you need any help choosing a glycolic acid product, your dermatologist is perhaps the right person to help you do so.

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