A high percentage of non-neutralized glycolic acid, like that applied in a dermatology office, can commonly cause some redness or irritation on patient's skin initially. According to Dr. B, "this is normal and means it's working."
Certain acids like glycolic are know to dry skin and may cause some redness when applied for the first time. This is common and in most cases goes away after a couple days.
When the skin is red it means the glycolic has entered the pores and activated the cell turnover process. Basically, your skin will get worse before it gets better. You want to remove the top layer of skin and that is what is happening here. The result, the fresh and bright layer of skin comes to the surface once the old layer has been exfoliated away.
And what do those reactions look like? We're talking redness, peeling, scaling, and flaking that can be mild, moderate, or severe. Luckily, when using an over the counter product like our Ultra Anti-Aging Cream, you can ease your skin into using them because they have lower concentrations than an dermatologist office glycolic chemical peel. Eventually, they don't cause any reactions when your skin grows a tolerance.
To make the process easier and experience no reaction...
1. Consult with your dermatologist, of course, it is important to ensure the reaction is not an allergic reaction. This is unlikely but better to be safe.
2. If it is just a mild nonallergic reaction, here are some ways to build-up your skin's tolerance and still see results.
- Start Small. Apply skincare with an ingredient like gylcolic acid just two or three days a week for at least two weeks or so to see how your skin reacts. For more dry sensitive skin, it's recommended to start once a week. it is key to not start with too much, try a pea-size to dime-size amount for your face.
- Go Slowly. If your skin is tolerating the product well, then increase the usage to three or four times a week and, eventually, every other night or even nightly over several more weeks. Everyone is different. Test what works best for you.
- Use a Moisturizer. While you're adjusting, it may be helpful to mix the product with a moisturizer to dilute the product and ease the skin. Or you can apply your moisturizer right after applying the other product. If you really want to be careful, you could even put your moisturizer on, then apply the product, then apply another layer of moisturizer.
- Only use it on dry skin. Some people notice that using glycolic right after taking a shower or washing their face with warm water causes more irritation, because the warmth helps loosen and clear out their pores. Although that's generally a good thing, it can also make your face a little more vulnerable to irritants, which is why it is recommended to wait at least 30 minutes after taking a warm shower before applying. However, if you have built a good tolerance to the product, applying after showering can increase the efficiency of the product and provide better results since it can enter the pores easier.
- Pat skin with a cold water cloth. Use a damp cold water cloth to sooth skin after applying skincare. This will minimize the tingling and possible redness.
Do you have more questions? We are happy to help! Tell us what works best for you.