Ingredients 101…The Exfoliating Edition (AHA’s)

Ingredients 101…The Exfoliating Edition (AHA’s)
Hey Beauty Scholars, welcome to Ingredients 101…The Exfoliating Edition (AHA’s)!!! Today is a day that will be filled with PSA’s (Private Scholar Announcements) and we will pick up from where we left off last month with Ingredients 101. Have you ever wondered what are the differences between all the different types of exfoliating acids??? There are so many to choose from as well as it can become difficult to understand the features and benefits of each one. So today, I will be sharing information on a few of the popular types to help you decide which one is best for you!!!
First, let’s talk about the purpose of exfoliation. Think of your skin as a mirror. What happens when water dries on a mirror??? It stains. What happens when dust accumulates on a mirror??? The dust builds up which makes it hard to see in the mirror and if you just wipe it off with a dry towel or wet towel with water, it smears the dust; the mirror is not totally clean and in order to get the mirror completely clean, you have to use a special cleaner. It is the same thing with exfoliation for the skin. Exfoliation removes the top layer of skin so that your moisturizer or makeup does not sit on top of the skin and give the dull look like a dusty mirror. Exfoliation helps to unclog pores, reduce breakouts, evens out the skin tone and gives a beautiful glow!!! Exfoliation is also good for men as it allows them to get a closer shave, prevents ingrown hairs and makes their skin oh so smooth!!!
There are 2 types of exfoliation: Mechanical, which, are the scrubs where you control the exfoliation and Chemical where the product does the exfoliation through the use of ingredients of AHA’s and BHA’s. AHA’s are Alpha Hydroxy Acids, which are usually derived from food like glycolic acid, lactic acid, malic acid and citric acid…just to name a few. These are the acids we will be covering today.
Glycolic Acid, one of the most popular acids is derived from sugar cane. Features and benefits: anti-aging, clear acne breakouts, even out the skin tone while making the skin brighter, softer and smoother.
Lactic Acid is derived from milk. Features and benefits: reduces fine lines and wrinkles, improves the skin tone and texture from dark spots as well as age spots. Lactic acid is gentler and less likely to irritate the skin than glycolic acid. It is great for people with sensitive skin and those with rosacea.
Malic Acid is derived from fruits such as apples. Features and benefits: used to balance the PH level in cosmetic products in a low dosage will help to condition the skin which makes it softer and smoother as well as firms to make it appear younger looking.
Citric Acid is derived from fruits like lemons, oranges and limes. Features and benefits: speeds up cell turnover and promotes smoother, softer skin with an even tone and texture. It is also an antioxidant (also known as Vitamin C) that protects from the earth’s environment such as smoke, smog and pollution.
Please remember that any type of exfoliation causes the skin to be more sensitive to the sun therefore; you will need to wear an SPF to prevent sunburn (and that means all nationalities)!!! If you are going to use a DIY at home peel, it is best to purchase something 10% or less; a licensed professional should handle anything over 10%. The higher the percentage, the more likely your skin will peel but that is normal and usually disappears in a few days.
Exfoliation is the key to happy, smooth and renewed skin. It lightens, tightens and brightens the complexion as well as allows your products to give you that natural healthy glow!!!
This concludes our session on Ingredients 101…The Exfoliating Edition (AHA’s). Thank you for your virtual attendance…LOL. If you have a suggestion on the next PSA (Private Scholar Announcements), leave a comment and let me know and I will try to cover it.

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  1. One thing that should be mentioned is that over-use of the exfoliants can be harmful to the skin. Chemical exfoliants can cause dehydration in the skin, leaving it with that perpetual shiny “saran wrap” look. Mechanical exfoliants can actually do harm to the skin, depending on the type of scrub one is using. Great post explaining all the AHA’s.

  2. Marie, you are so right!!! I did forget to mention that..thanks for sharing…MUAH.

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