How many times have you noticed the name ‘glycolic acid’ in your favorite skincare products? Probably lots of times! If you have always wondered what glycolic acid is and how it can help your skin, you have come to the right page. In this post, we will be sharing all information about glycolic acid that you must know along with the best glycolic acid creams in India that can give your skin a beautiful makeover. Keep reading.
What Is Glycolic Acid?
Glycolic acid is the smallest form of alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), a group of naturally-occurring fruit acids. In fact, it is known to be one of the best and safest AHAs you can ever use on your skin. It easily penetrates the skin and loosens the glue-like substance that keeps the dead cells attached to the topmost layer of the skin. Thus, it helps in revealing newer, healthier skin while stimulating new cell generation. As a result, we get an improved skin texture, better skin tone, and a brighter complexion.
Though it is naturally obtained from sugar cane, grapes, beets, pineapples, milk, apples, and all kinds of citrus fruits, the production of synthetic glycolic acid has also become widespread in recent years. The first use of glycolic acid in the cosmetic industry was around 20 years ago in skin peel off procedures. But now, it is quite commonly used in various beauty and skincare products for its versatile usage (1).
Before being incorporated into beauty products, Glycolic acid is distilled, filtered, and diluted. This ensures that every individual finds the appropriate product for herself that would work safely and effectively.
Skin Benefits Of Glycolic Acid
Glycolic acid offers a whole lot of skin benefits, which include the following (2):
- Promotes the production of collagen and elastin proteins
- Provides instant skin rejuvenation
- Accelerates skin healing
- Cures scarring and skin discoloration
- Reduces the signs of environmental damage
- Moisturizes dry and scaly skin
- Reduces excessive skin oiliness
- Exfoliates sensitive skin safely
- Cleanses the skin without causing irritation
- Treats skin conditions like melasma, psoriasis, seborrheic keratosis, etc.
10 Best Glycolic Acid Creams In India
1. Micro Labs’ Glyco 6 Cream
Glyco 6 Cream by Micro Labs is one of the most common glycolic acid creams available in the Indian market. The product is made in India and also known as the best product for treating hyperpigmentation, healing acne scars, and reducing pimple marks. It contains 6% glycolic acid in a cream base, which helps in getting rid of dead skin cells, thereby revealing the brighter layer of the skin underneath. Being a highly effective exfoliating formula, it is also considered as an excellent medication for achieving even-toned and youthful skin. Read the full review of Glyco 6 Cream.
Price: Rs. 170 for 30 gm.
2. Micro Labs’ Glyco A Cream
This is another product by Micro Labs. This cream is basically a stronger version of the Glyco 6 Cream as it contains 12% glycolic acid in a cream base. Just like the Glyco 6 Cream, it is also pretty much effective in eliminating skin discoloration caused due to hyperpigmentation. The medicated cream offers even better exfoliation than the Glyco 6 Cream and gives brighter skin with lesser marks and scars. It also treats acne, blackheads, dullness, and oiliness successfully. However, it might cause irritation and itching or burning sensation in sensitive skin.
Price: Rs. 249 for 30 gm.
3. Ranbaxy’s Decroma 6 Cream
Here is another glycolic acid cream product that is made by Ranbaxy and has gained extreme popularity throughout the country. It contains 6% glycolic acid extract in its purest form, which is again formulated in a cream base for easier penetration and better efficacy. Decroma 6 is mostly used for treating acne and other related issues. It can even fade the scars and marks away gradually by removing dead cells from the upper layer of the skin and revealing the new layer of cells underneath. The best part about using Decroma 6 is that it does not irritate the skin.
Price: Rs. 96 for 30 gm.
4. Psyco Remedies’ Golic D Cream
Golic D is another renowned name for skin cream, which has glycolic acid as its one and only active ingredient. The product contains 6% glycolic acid extract in a cream base. It is widely used for treating acne and preventing premature aging. Just like other glycolic acid creams, it also removes the top layers of dead cells from the skin and makes the skin radiant and flawless. Golic D Cream is also available in a stronger version with 12% glycolic acid in its composition.
Price: Rs. 105 for 30 gm.
5. Reviva Labs’ 5% Glycolic Acid Cream
This apparently simple cream by the Reviva Labs contains 5% advanced glycolic acid, which is just perfect for treating both skin disorders as well as aging skin. The best thing about this professional strength cream is that it has 100% glycolic acid extract in the form of full-strength crystals. This penetrates the surface of the skin more effectively. Moreover, the glycolic acid polymers are present in a natural base, which is necessary for improved exfoliation as well as better cell renewal. It is a made-in-USA product with no animal testing and no animal ingredients used.
Price: Rs. 4099 for 42 gm.
6. Life Essentials Skin Care’s 10% Glycolic Acid Cream
When it comes to skin renewal, glycolic acid creams help a lot and this product by Life Essentials Skin Care is just perfect for this purpose. It comprises 10% glycolic acid extract for sloughing off dead cells, renewing skin cells, boosting collagen, revitalizing the overall health of the skin, reducing large skin pores, eliminating dark spots, and reducing hyperpigmentation. It is a cruelty-free product, which suits even the most sensitive type of skin too.
Price: Rs. 1,050 for 30 ml.
7. InstaNatural’s 10% Glycolic Acid Cream
Finally, here is the ultimate skin perfecting cream by InstaNatural, which is not only enriched with glycolic acid extract but also works as a ‘professional-grade moisturizer and exfoliator’. The unique formulation combines 5% glycolic acid with 20% vitamin C and 10% hyaluronic acid. It also contains CoQ10, niacinamide, and bearberry extract, which work together to cleanse, exfoliate, and moisturize our skin. It is suitable for all skin types. However, the formulation makes it a gem for dry and mature skin or people with severe acne.
Price: Rs. 1,545 for 50 ml.
8. Avéne TriAcnéal Expert
Avene TriAcnEal Expert is an evening moisturizer that particularly suits oily skin with severe imperfections and residual marks. Being rich in glycolic acid, it is an ideal product for limiting bacterial proliferation and fighting adult acne. It also contains retinaldehyde (a vitamin A-derivative) and X-pressin (an exfoliating enzyme) as active ingredients, which play key roles in rejuvenating the skin and exfoliating it respectively. These not only eliminate blackheads, redness, blemishes, stubborn spots, and residual marks comprehensively but also refine and smoothen the skin texture successfully. The dermatological skincare also targets the first signs of aging while making the skin feel soft, hydrated, and comfortable.
Price: Rs. 1475 for 30 ml.
9. MIZON AHA 8% Peeling Serum
Mizon AHA 8% Peeling Serum is an answer to your dry, dull, and aging skin. It contains 8% glycolic acid as its main ingredient while other ingredients in it are portulaca extract, sagebrush extract, aloe vera leaf extract, arnica flower extract, castor oil, panthenol, allantoin, papaya fruits extract, yarrow extract, and Gentiana extract. This hypoallergenic peeling serum can be applied to the skin daily for removing unnecessary damaged dead cells and restoring the health of the skin gently. Once applied, it creates a moisturizing protection veil on the skin to retain moisture for hours while maximizing cell turnover and creating a smooth texture. Aloe vera leaf extract in it also protects the skin from harmful stimulation.
Price: Rs. 3,400 for 50 ml.
10. Cosrx AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid
Cosrx AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid is perfect for treating dullness, rough skin, and acne scars. It is an innovative formulation of apple water containing AHA and 7% Glycolic Acid, which works as a savior for controlling sebum production as well as reducing whiteheads. A very small amount of this treatment essence can help in sloughing off dead cells from the skin surface, thereby revealing the layer of fresher and brighter cells underneath. It moisturizes, whitens, and brightens the skin without clogging the pores. The gentle product even suits sensitive and irritated skin.
Price: Rs. 1450 for 100 ml.
Side Effects Of Glycolic Acid Creams
Glycolic acid comes with its own set of risks. Here are the most common side effects of you can experience:
- Though safe for sensitive skin, glycolic acid can cause redness, itchiness, mild irritation, bumps, etc. to it.
- Being a strong exfoliant, it can make your skin extremely dry and you may need to moisturize it profusely.
- Sometimes, it makes the skin prone to sunburn and suntan. Hence, never go out in the sun right after applying these creams.
- A high concentration of glycolic acid can irritate or burn your skin. It can also damage your skin eventually.
Consult your physician before starting the use of any commercial glycolic acid creams available in the market. It will help you avoid all sorts of undesired outcomes.
Glycolic acid is of the safest AHAs which is widely used in beauty products. Glycolic acid exfoliates and removes dead cells from the outer layer of the skin. It works as a skin lightening agent and is also used for treating acne. It is recommended for normal, oily and combination skin types. If you have dry or sensitive skin, it’s better to avoid it.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What Skin Products Have Glycolic Acid?
Amazing skin benefits of glycolic acid have made it a mainstream ingredient in the cosmetic industry. There are glycolic acid creams, serums, peel-off masks, face washes, and many other similar products from different brands in the market. You can pick any of them as per the unique requirements of your skin.
Should I Apply Glycolic Acid Every Day On Skin?
Diluted glycolic acid is generally safe for the skin. However, you must apply it every alternate day for the best results. It is even better to consult a dermatologist prior to starting the use of any glycolic acid product.
Is Glycolic Acid Better Than Lactic Acid?
Both glycolic acid and lactic acid are used in skincare for the same purpose. But glycolic acid is stronger than lactic acid and hence, it is more useful in severe skin conditions.
How Long Should I Leave Glycolic Acid On Face?
While using 10% (or higher concentration) glycolic acid product, do not leave it more than a minute on your face. Otherwise, it can irritate your skin or damage it. There is no need to follow the maximum time limit for application always. It will depend upon the tolerance of your skin too.
- “7 Ways to Use Glycolic Acid in Your Skincare Regimen“, Dermstore.com
- “What is Glycolic Acid?“, SkinStore.com