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What does Glycolic Acid Do for Your Skin?

With the addition of Glytone to the EBC family of product lines, what better time to highlight one of my favorite ingredients? In the 1990s Glycolic acid was found to impart significant changes to our cells and components when evaluated under the microscope. It was shown to increase collagen density and the quality of elastic fibers in our dermis- all good things when it comes to anti-aging. Since then, its popularity in skin care products has only been increasing and it’s now a staple in most Dermatology clinicians’ toolboxes.

Glycolic acid is a chemical exfoliant that increases cellular turnover and promotes exfoliation of the outermost layer of the skin, the stratum corneum. This outer layer is comprised of compact DEAD skin cells which, when accumulated, can leave the skin appearing dull and lifeless. AHAs like Glycolic Acid work to exfoliate these skin cells without harsh scrubbing action. This compacts the outer layer leaving the skin more radiant, smoother and more even-textured.

Glycolic acid also works to improve acne, fine lines, pigmentation like post- acne marks and melasma as well as improve collagen production. It is one of my favorite ingredients to incorporate into my patients' regimens for that WOW factor and always part of my recommendations for someone looking for that GLOW. Plus, it is safe for most skin types. Even those with dry, sensitive skin can often tolerate AHAs in the right formulations. One of the reasons I love adding a glycolic product into my routines is because patients will often notice an improvement in skin texture rather quickly, giving them the motivation to stay consistent with their regimen, while the ingredient works long term on the deeper dermis.

Glytone specifically prides themselves on higher concentrations of the free acid form of Glycolic acid making their products very effective. I always like to start off with a Glycolic acid cleanser in the morning to prep the skin for the products to follow.

If you have dry skin and are looking to add this anti-aging star into your regimen, try Glytone Mild Cream Cleanser 

On the other hand, if you have skin on the oily side you can tolerate their gel formulation, Glytone Mild Gel Cleanser: 

 For pigment correction I love Glytone’s Enhance Brightening Complex which has another ingredient favorite of mine, azelaic acid. 

Not only is this incredible acid a great addition to your daily routine and well-tolerated by most skin types, but it can also be added to your body care routine. Glycolic Acid addresses sun damaged skin on the body improving tone and texture as well as those pesky “chicken skin” bumps on the backs of the arms and legs known as Keratosis Pilaris.

Questions about Glycolic Acid? DM me on instagram @the_skinthusiast!

Amy is a Cosmetic Dermatology PA and skin care enthusiast living and practicing in Miami, FL.