This post is dedicated towards those who want to get into acid toning but don’t want to yet splurge on, or can’t afford, expensive toners.
Alpha and beta hydroxy acids are viewed as a ‘leave-on exfoliant’ and thought to be more effective than the traditional physical exfoliation process (i.e. scrubbing). The two products I’ll be mentioning today contain the AHA’s lactic acid and glycolic acid. Lactic acid, when applied topically, can improve skins texture, reduce the appearance of scars and subsequently reduce the appearance of ageing. It’s typically recommended to those with dehydrated and dry skin. The second, glycolic acid, is most effective in clearing acne and blackheads. By stimulating collagen production, it reduces dullness.
Nip+Fab’s Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads claim to:
“Unveil younger-looking skin with our innovative Glycolic Fix. 60 radiance-boosting pads, soaked in exfoliating glycolic acid (2.8%) retexture + resurface skin whilst witch hazel helps to tone. This moisturising formula with hyaluronic acid + soothing blue daisy helps to reveal brighter + smoother looking skin.”
What’s in it? Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Glycolic Acid, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Hydroxide, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Alcohol Denat. (SD Alcohol 40-B), Disodium EDTA, Globularia Alypum (Blue Daisy) Extract, Panthenol, Lactic Acid, Parfum, Limonene, Ethylhexylglycerin, Dehydroacetic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, Linalool, Geraniol, Citral
They recommend using them both day and night, but if you’re new to acids I would recommend using them in the evening until you build a tolerance, and then start incorporating them into your morning routine. One of the main ingredients, glycolic acid, is mild at 2.8% so after using them a few times in the evenings, they can be used in the morning as a mild exfoliant and the evenings can be reserved for a stronger acid.
The pads themselves have a very mild scent, similar to that of rose water, but I quite enjoy it and haven’t noticed any reaction to it. I noticed an immediate difference when I started using them but now, a few months after my first use, I don’t notice a difference as dramatic as the start. The pads are well soaked but after having them open for a few months I have noticed that they have begun drying and are not as saturated as at the start. So I would definitely advise against leaving them to the side, but using them up before they dry.
First Aid Beauty: Facial Radiance Pads claim to:
“Improve skin clarity. Reduce visible pores. Diminish the appearance of fine lines. FAB Facial Radiance Pads contain just the right amount of lactic and glycolic acids to make them safe and effective for daily use. Cucumber and Indian gooseberry tone the skin, while lemon peel and licorice root leave the skin bright and glowing. FAB’s facial radiance pads are free of parabens, harsh chemicals and colorants.”
What’s in it? Water/Eau, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Water, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Chrysanthemum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Extract, Citrus Nobilis (Mandarin Orange) Fruit Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Phyllanthus Emblica (Indian Gooseberry) Fruit Extract, Polysorbate 20
These pads, with a stronger percentage of glycolic and lactic acid, definitely leave you with a much stronger ‘tingling’ sensation in comparison with Nip+Fab’s pads. They are much thicker and very well soaked. They are fragrance-free so don’t have a scent.
I do find these give me an immediate glow, and when my skin is acting up I definitely reach for these, over Nip+Fab’s, to calm the situation down.
Overall I think both are great and you do notice a difference if you are new to acid toning. I would suggest starting off with the Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads then moving onto a stronger one, like the Facial Radiance Pads, for use at night. In terms of when to use these in your routine, acid toners are typically used after cleansing and before any serums or moisturisers. I usually wait a few minutes to let it soak in before continuing. It must be noted that you must apply SPF when using acid toners as they do increase sun sensitivity.