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What Is Lactic Acid And Lactic Acid Benefits For Skin

picture what is lactic acid
What is lactic acid

Do you often find skincare products that contain Lactic Acid as their main ingredient? But what is lactic acid, actually? Well, you are not alone! Many people still need to learn about this type of chemical ingredient.

What Is Lactic Acid And Lactic Acid Benefits For Skin

If you love to exfoliate your skin, you may need to be friends with lactic acid. Lactic acid is one of the best ingredients that helps your skin exfoliate properly.

Exfoliation must be done regularly to avoid clogged pores, acne, and dull skin. People who exfoliate their skin regularly tend to have smoother and clearer skin.

What is exfoliation?

Exfoliation is an action taken to remove accumulated dirt, make-up residue, dead skin cells, and oil. Looking for more detailed information about exfoliation? You can read it here: Exfoliating Skin Benefits And Its Side Effects.

If your skin doesn't get proper exfoliation, it will lose its natural radiance. As a result, the skin looks unhealthy. The most common problem people often struggle with is oily and dull skin, with lots of blackheads and pimples.

If you've never exfoliated before but want to try exfoliating, let's learn more about the benefits and side effects of using lactic acid as a facial skin exfoliant.

What is Lactic Acid?

In line with Mandelic Acid and Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid is also one of the AHA family products known to effectively solve various skin problems, especially in preventing premature aging.

Actually, what is lactic acid? Lactic acid is a compound from lactose fermentation and belongs to the AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) group. Lactose itself is a carbohydrate that can be found in milk.

AHA itself is a water-soluble organic compound. Therefore, the presence of AHA in a skincare product can provide extraordinary benefits, which is to help improve skin health conditions.

Lactic acid has a vital function when used on the skin. Lactic acid can accelerate the exfoliation of dead skin cells and stimulate the growth of new, healthier skin cells.

Many people prefer to use Lactic Acid because this type of acid is milder compared to other acids from AHA groups.

Lactic acid does not easily cause irritation but also has many good benefits for the skin, especially in overcoming the problem of premature aging.

Not only that but lactic acid is also known to have more benefits than other types of AHA. For example, different types of AHA can't hydrate the skin, while Lactic Acid has.

Lactic Acid Chemical Formula

Lactic acid can keep the skin hydrated naturally and significantly improve the appearance of the skin. This is all because Lactic Acid consists of 2 types of composition, keratolytic and emollient.

Keratolytic and emollients help prevent and improve dry, flaky, itchy, and rough skin conditions. Those skin issues are often caused by various skin problems, especially keratosis, xerosis, and eczema.

Since many benefits can be obtained from these active compounds, it is very understandable that skincare manufacturers are competing to add Lactic Acid as one of the main ingredients in their products. 

This fact certainly makes lactic acid increasingly popular among skin care products today.

Lactic Acid Benefits For Skin

1. Stimulates the growth of new skin cells

One of the main benefits of using lactic acid is to help exfoliate piles of dead skin cells on the outermost layer of skin, or what we know as the epidermis.

At the same time, it also helps increase the occurrence of new skin cell turnover. The commonly used concentration for lactic acid is 12%.

The effect of using Lactic Acid regularly with a concentration of 12% is that the skin becomes smoother and tighter, and fine lines are also reduced.

This shows that the high concentration of Lactic Acid effectively penetrates into the deeper layers of skin cells.

Meanwhile, the use of Lactic Acid, with a lower concentration of 5%, is known to have no impact on the middle layer of the skin. However, a similar effect at a more superficial level can still be felt.

2. Get rid of skin discoloration

Do you struggle with skin discoloration? Well, lactic acid can be your solution. Lactic acid is excellent acid that works mildly to exfoliate your skin cells and banish your uneven skin tone.

Skin discoloration often causes by many factors, but the only way to get rid of skin discoloration is to speed up your skin cells' regeneration.

3. Prevent acne

Are you struggling with acne? If yes, then you need to try to use lactic acid. Acne is inflammatory on your skin due to clogged pores infected by bacteria.

Clog pores are common due to trapped dirt mixed with sebum and dead skin cells. You can learn more about acne here.

Lactic acid will help your skin to clear clogged pores and prevent build-up on your skin. The lower concentration of the lactic acid formula is safe to be used daily to prevent clogged pores.

4. Hydrate your skin

Another reason you should try to use lactic acid compared to other AHA products is lactic acid will help your skin stay hydrated.

Lactic acid keeps your skin moist and supple while exfoliating your skin by removing any trapped dirt and dead skin cells.

It also works better to regulate your sebum or oil production. Using lactic acid will make your skin smooth, supple, and well-hydrated.

5. Reduce dark spots and hyperpigmentation

Do you have many dark spots? or have you been struggling to remove your hyperpigmentation? Then, lactic acid will do that for you.

Once again, lactic acid works to exfoliate your skin cells and promotes the new skin cell to grow. Due to this activity, it slowly fades away your dark spots and hyperpigmentation.

6. Brighten your skin

Using lactic acid regularly will also help to brighten your skin. As we stated above, lactic acid help to remove dead skin cells and any dirt trapped inside your skin pores.

Dead skin cells and dirt that are trapped inside your skin pores will cause your skin to lose its natural shines and cause your skin to get texture and rough.

The mild exfoliation from lactic acid will make your skin look smoother and brighter. Your skin will look radiant with its natural shines.

Lactic Acid side effects

Even though lactic acid is a mild exfoliation agent, the risk of getting side effects is still there. Almost similar to other AHA, the use of lactic acid without proper knowledge can cause some side effects, such as:

1. Skin irritation

The common side effect caused by lactic acid is skin irritation. The common symptom is dry and flaky skin, accompanied by red and itchy skin. 

Sometimes, some people also can experience a burning sensation with inflamed skin. Usually, irritation symptoms can be felt right after you apply the product to your skin.

2. The increased skin sensitivity toward the sun exposure

Similar to other AHAs, the use of lactic acid can cause an increase in skin sensitivity toward sun exposure.

This effect happens because your skin experiences growing new skin cells, which are more sensitive to sun exposure.

To overcome this problem, you must always apply sunscreen containing at least SPF 30. You can read more here about sunscreen and which is suitable for you.

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