Chemical exfoliants are skincare products that contain acids to help you get rid of dead skin cells. There’s many different chemical exfoliants to choose from, with different concentrations that can be purchased over the counter or can be applied via a dermatologist in the form of a chemical peel.
The idea of using acids within your skincare routine might sound scary, but they’re very effective. Skin cells typically regenerate every month or so, but acids are a quick way of removing dead skin cells, as well as brightening the skin and helping to fade acne scarring too.
There are numerous different acids to choose from; AHA’s, BHA’s, TCA’s and Fruit Enzymes to name just a few. I personally don’t like using manual exfoliants as they’re too harsh for my sensitive skin, which is where chemical exfoliants come in.
You still have to be careful when using chemical exfoliants, as they can be too harsh too, and it increases the risk of UV damage, so it’s essential to use SPF when using chemical exfoliants within your skincare routine.
There are a number of popular acid based chemical exfoliants to choose from, to suit all budgets, and here are five of the most popular acid toners..
- Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant
- The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
- Pixi Glow Tonic Acid Toner
- Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment
- Alpha H Liquid Gold Acid Toner
If you’re yet to try an acid based toner, it’s recommended to try a product with a small quantity of acids, gently building your skin up slowly to reduce any redness or sensitivity issues. You can use chemical exfoliants on the face, neck and even the body.
Whenever I’ve used a cotton pad to apply acid toners to my face, I always ensure I take the cotton pad down my neck, onto my decolletage, and even use one on the back of my hands. Pixi Glow Tonic in particular, works really well on any breakouts on the body too, and also helps with any textural issues you may be experiencing also.
You can also use acid toner pads if you want something a little quicker and easier to use, as they’re pre-soaked in acid, and you just sweep the pad over the skin to slough away dead skin cells, fade acne scarring and helping to reduce any roughness too.