As I’m sure you already know, Glycolic Acid is the holy grail of exfoliation. It removes the dead cells from your face, evening out your complexion and leaving you with brighter, fresher, smoother skin. It’s used to improve the appearance of scarring, discolouration and also signs of ageing.
If your skin is looking dull or pigmented, or your pores are feeling congested, look to Glycolic Acid as your solution. It comes in some daily products, or you can use a proper at-home peel or exfoliating treatment once a week.
Today, I’m using the StriVectinLABS 5-minute Weekly Glycolic Peel. I bought these ages ago at a very reduced price from bargain paradise TK Maxx. I saw online you could buy the set for £60 but after another gander, I saw some places selling the set for around £30. The two-step peel claims to encourage cell turnover, resurface skin and reduce pores. Excellent. So, let’s dive in.
Step One – Detoxifying Primer
You apply a thin layer of this thick, creamy lotion-like primer to your skin first. Leave for a minute to allow it to absorb into your face.
This primer contains zinc oxide, which blocks UVA and UVB which can protect cells when exposed to UV light. We’ll be washing this step off, though, so this feels a bit pointless? You’ll still need to apply SPF after the treatment.
It also contains Myristyl Nicotinate, a form of Vitamin B, which improves the skin barrier function and allows less water to escape from our skin into the atmosphere, meaning our skin retains moisture and looks ‘fuller’.
Finally it also contains Glycerin, a moisturising ingredient. This attracts water from the lower layers to the outer layers of the skin, making you look healthy and hydrated!
Step Two – AHA Activator
Now, the exciting part. It’s a gel consistency, and glides on easily over the top of the primer. Ingredient wise, we obviously have Glycolic Acid, a popular alpha hydroxy acid (AHA). The list also features orange, lemon, bilberry and sugarcane extract, all containing the AHA. StriVectin have also decided to throw Lactic Acid into the mix, which is another powerful exfoliant that helps to reduce acne breakouts and signs of ageing.
Please note that even though AHAs slough off a layer of dead cells, leaving you with fresh baby smooth glowing skin, this ALSO makes your skin more vulnerable to sun damage!!! It’s very important that you apply SPF daily – even if the sun isn’t shining – to protect your skin from UV damage (this is something I’m still trying to remember!)
So I left on for 5 minutes while I went to make myself a coffee. I could feel it tingling slightly, but the back of the packaging told me this was normal and just meant the AHAs were working their magic.
When I’d washed it off and patted my face dry, my skin felt so SMOOTH. This definitely helped with rough texture and congested pores. My skin actually felt very clean, soft and regenerated and my pores looked smaller.
I read on some reviews that it had irritated people’s skin but that wasn’t my experience. I have fairly sensitive skin and this peel didn’t irritate it at all! Everyone’s different, I guess. Otherwise, reviews are mainly good and loads of people said the results were as good as getting an actual salon peel. As a broke graduate I wouldn’t pay the normal price to buy this peel but luckily I got it cheaply from good old TK.
On a final note, my mum even complimented me on my skin later that day and asked me what I had used. Soooo, I guess I’ll be using this every week from now on.
What are your favourite AHA products?