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Alpha Hydroxy Acid
Alpha Hydroxy Acid can Make Your Skin Glow
Alpha Hydroxy Acid is an ingredient that is found in many skin care products, but what you probably don’t know is that it has been used for hundreds of years back to the times of the ancient Egyptians by those who were trying to keep their skin looking younger. Alpha Hydroxy Acid or AHAs as this group of compounds is called includes glycolic acid, malic acid, citric acid, tartaric acid and lactic acid. You will find Alpha Hydroxy Acid is in many foods such as sugar cane, wine grapes, citrus fruits, apples and sour milk.
Today Alpha Hydroxy Acid can be found in products such as facial creams and sunscreen, shampoo and skin lightener products along with products aimed at controlling acne. They are used in many different concentrations in chemical peels, microdermabrasion and other facial treatments that are performed in a physician’s or a dermatologist’s office. These treatments have much higher concentration levels and are deemed more effective; however, they are also more expensive to have done. The products that are sold over the counter for consumers at home contain less than 10% concentrations and generally more like 5%.
Benefits of Alpha Hydroxy Acid
The ancient Egyptians knew that alpha hydroxyl acid could reduce wrinkles and fine lines and other visible signs of aging which is one of the main reasons they used it. It can exfoliate the skin and remove dead and dry skin cells that tend to make the skin appear dull and dreary with no life. Alpha hydroxyl acid or AHAs will revitalize the skin and increase the blood flow and renew the skin’s cells so they are energized.
Alpha hydroxyl acid is also used for lightening skin or evening out skin tones and is often used for those with hyper-pigmentation issues or brown spots caused by aging or other sun damaged spots that appear on the skin. It will reduce blackheads and are often used by people who have skin that is prone to acne or blemishes because it will help to control and reduce acne outbreaks.
Skin care products for at home peels contain Alpha Hydroxy Acid and are an inexpensive way to try to refresh your skin yourself without a lot of effort. However, with the low concentrations of alpha hydroxyl acid the results are limited sometimes and could take several applications and at least six months to see any results.
However, if you can afford a chemical peel or other treatment in a physician’s office the down time is longer for the skin to heal so the skin will look like you have experienced bad sunburn and it will look like that for a few days, but the end results can be amazing. With the higher concentration used in the doctor’s office you will see immediate results with a reduction or disappearance of wrinkles and fine lines and the effect can last up to five years making it worthwhile.
Skin Types are a Factor
Your skin type has a great deal to do with how much your skin can handle higher concentrations of Alpha Hydroxy Acid. The products sold to consumers are lower concentrations because they are considered safer for people to use at home. People with sensitive skin, skin that is prone to Rosacea or dermatitis or other skin conditions might experience unwelcome itching, stinging or a rash. If this occurs they should stop use of the product and seek a physician’s advice or perhaps try another product that might work better.
If you do use alpha hydroxyl acid products at home, they are designed to be used on a daily or weekly basis depending on the product. You must be patient, however, because it might take months to see any real improvement with a reduction in wrinkles and fine lines. Everyone’s skin is different and not everyone is in need of the same amount of improvement to their skin so the results will vary by individual. During this process it is important to remember that you should always use a sunscreen during the day when using any alpha hydroxyl acid product as you do not want the new skin to experience any sun damage.