Thursday, 3 September 2020

All You Need To Know About Lactic Acid And Your Skin


Lactic Acid is known for fixing broken skin, exfoliating and redeeming natural glow.

WHAT IS LACTIC ACID?

So, what exactly is a lactic acid? "Lactic acid is part of the group of Alpha Hydroxy acids (AHAs), and is a naturally occurring carboxylic acids that's found in many foods," says Emma Hobson, Education Manager for Dermalogica and the International Dermal Institute. "It's a non-friction type exfoliant which works by breaking down and dissolving the structure of dead skin cells without causing sensitivity."

WHAT DOES LACTIC ACID DO FOR OUR SKIN?

When applied to the skin, lactic acids "stimulate the exfoliation of surface skin cells by interfering with the bonding between these cells. This causes the sloughing off of dull, rough skin and promotes cellular renewal by increasing cell turnover rates in the upper layers of your skin (epidermis), so you have younger, plumper skin cells within the skin," says Hobson. Lactic acid is a true multi-tasker—it increases the ceramides in the skin's protective barrier; it increases water retention; it works to prevent congestion; it improves pigmentation.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU USE A LACTIC ACID?

Although lactic acid is one of the gentler acids on offer, you should still refrain from using one too regularly. "Once or twice a week is best for most skin types," says Hobson.

WILL A LACTIC ACID IRRITATE MY SKIN?

As mentioned above, lactic acids are one of the gentler AHAs on offer, however overuse, or use of a higher concentration, can still lend itself to irritation. "Higher concentrations of AHAs, though more active, can have an irritating effect on the skin causing redness and inflammation," says Hobson.

When it comes to deciding which lactic acid is best for you, you should be looking at both the percentage of the acid in the product, and also the pH level of the formula. According to Hobson, lactic acids "work best at a lower pH. For home care use products should be about 10% or less with an optimal pH of around 3.5-4.0."

WHICH SKIN TYPES WORK BEST WITH LACTIC ACID?

Unsurprisingly, lactic acids are a good all-rounder when it comes to use by specific skin types. "Lactic Acid is good for more mature skin, acne skin or sensitive skin types," says Hobson. "This acid is beneficial for almost all skin types including acneic skin."

WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT LACTIC ACIDS?

"Whilst both glycolic Acid and lactic Acid affect the skin layers in the same way, there are additional beneficial effects unique to Lactic Acid," says Hobson. "It helps stimulate collagen synthesis, improve skin texture, the appearance of wrinkles and improve skin discolouration by reducing hyperpigmentation." And as mentioned before, this acid benefits all skin types, something not many other acids can guarantee.



Source: Haper's Bazaar 2019

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