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With all these types of acids floating about, it can be tricky keeping tabs on which acids do what. Here’s the lowdown on lactic acid…
What is it?
“Dull-skin Doris had come to the end of her tether with her flat complexion, so she jumped on the lactic acid bandwagon to get her sparkle back. You go, Doris.”
This snazzy ingredient is in the same AHA team as the more widely known ingredient, glycolic acid. However, lactic acid is gentler and works on the surface of your skin to dissolve dead skin build-ups – great for conquering acne for good – while brightening scarring and sun spots and drawing in moisture too. Over time, lactic acid can also encourage collagen production for skin that’s bouncier than Tigga on a space hopper. Not bad, right?
Who needs it?
Dry and sensitive skins rejoice – this buffs away dead skin but hydrates too so, your skin won’t be left feeling red-raw. It’s not quite as aggressive as glycolic acid either, so it’s worth a go if that one left your face running for the hills.
Where do we find it?
To scoff: Not for this one – lactic acid needs to be applied topically to work it’s magic.
To smother: You’ll find it in cleansers, exfoliating toners, serums, professional peels and body lotions. Fun fact: lactic acid naturally occurs in milk, which is why Cleopatra couldn’t get enough of it in her bath.
When should it go on our face?
Use this in your nighttime regime for best results.
Like all AHA treatments, they need to go hand-in-hand with daily SPF protection for them to be worthwhile. Your skin is more sensitive to the sun (and therefore ageing) when using AHAs – so foregoing SPF is actually counterproductive to what lactic acid is trying to do.