Let's talk about acids. Particularly, the not-so-scary, skin-loving, and exfoliating ones. These kinds of acids promise smooth skin and a healthy glow, getting you one step closer to the brighter complexion that you crave. So if you're dealing with a dry and dull complexion, or struggling with skin sensitivities, sit up and pay attention while I introduce you to the underdog of all exfoliating acids, and the one that might just become your skin's new best friend.
Name: Mandelic Acid
Origin: Derived from bitter almonds
Why we love it: Exfoliates the skin, unclogs pores, clears breakouts; brightens skin tone, reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation.
Find in: Power Potion
Use with: As with all AHAs and exfoliating products, sun protection is key. Always SPF!
Mandelic Acid is not a new or novelty skincare ingredient, but you may have never heard of it before. It has a long history of use in medicine as an antibacterial and is often used in high percentages by Derms for professional skin peels. But in recent years, as at-home chemical exfoliants become a big player on the skincare market and in many of our routines, Mandelic Acid has flown under the radar as one of the few more underrated acids out there.
That's because this alpha hydroxy acid leans more on the gentler side. Its molecular structure is much larger than most other AHA's, so it penetrates more slowly into the skin, offering more gradual results in comparison to, say, Glycolic Acid, which has been the reigning queen of AHAs since chemical exfoliants first hit the scene. But this is also what makes Mandelic Acid so unique.
Slower penetration into the skin means less irritation, less redness and less of a chance of overdoing it and disrupting your skin's protective barrier function. That’s why this acid is a winning ingredient for anyone new to exfoliating acids, who are more on the sensitive side or dealing with inflammed, acne-prone skin.
Even better, it is the most suitable of all AHAs for black skin, due in part to its non-irritating properties and for its ability to inhibit post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
So does Mandelic Acid’s gentle action make it less effective? No, it just makes it a little slower. But what it lacks in speed, it makes up for with its unmatched ability to lift dark marks and brighten the skin.
Consistency is the magic word when it comes to using this exfoliating powerhouse. If you’re using products containing Mandelic Acid to exfoliate and brighten your skin, you’ve got to use it regularly to reap all the benefits. And luckily, unlike many other AHAs, it's a gentle option that’s good for daily use, and it works well on all skin types. Just remember, AHAs and sun protection go hand in hand, and Mandelic Acid is not the exception here. Wear an SPF daily to protect your skin from any further sun damage. And while you’re at it, throw on a hat when you go outside.
This gentle leave-on exfoliant with 1% Mandelic acid, 1,3% Lactic Acid (AHA) and 0,5% Willow Bark Extract, works to clear breakouts and minimize pores by encouraging exfoliation and improving skin elasticity. Coupled with natural fruit enzymes to smooth skin texture and increase cell turnover, the potent formula produces fast results with every use.