Let’s Talk About Acids – AHA’s, BHA’s and PHA’s
When I first heard about acids in skincare my immediate thought was “Ugh, my skin will be red, itchy and inflamed!”. After reading and learning about its skin-saving abilities I decided to give it a shot. And yes, it’s amazing.
There’s 3 types of acids you need to know: alpha hydroxy acids (AHA), beta hydroxy acids (BHA), and poly hydroxy acids (PHA). Hydroxy acids are mainly used to exfoliate your skin, and the process is called chemical exfoliation. Instead of using scrubs and abrasive brushes (physical exfoliants) to remove dead skin, many dermatologists recommend using mild chemical exfoliants.
Let’s start with AHA’s. It removes dead skin from the surface of your skin, and this can help reveal brighter and smoother looking skin. BHA’s help with removing build-up within your pores by breaking down the sticky oily substance. Finally, PHA’s help to improve sensitized skin overtime – great for ladies and gents with sensitive or mature skin!
So, which one’s the right acid for you?
First, you have to know your skin type and concerns. Personally, I have combination skin, breakout hormonally and have eczema on my cheeks. All these acids work great for my skin when used in moderation. I use REN’s Ready Steady Glow Daily AHA Tonic on most nights. It works great for my combination and slightly sensitive skin, not too strong but still visibly effective. Once a week I turn it up a notch by using the Drunk Elephant TLC Sukari BabyFacial, a super strong 25% AHA 2% BHA chemical exfoliant. I wouldn’t recommend using this unless you’ve been using acids for a while and know your tolerance. Overtime, acids have made my pores less visible and evened out my skin tone.
When used correctly, I feel that acids can be a game changer for your skincare routine and it’s definitely your answer to achieve that glowy, baby-soft skin.