There are hundreds of skin care treatments out there – from masks to pills to creams. How do you decide which ones might work for you? People spend billions of dollars every year on anti-aging products, hoping they’ll look younger, slimmer, or even better at their jobs. Unfortunately, these products don’t always deliver. That’s why we examined the AHA and BHA acids that can be very effective for you and explained the differences between them. This great article will be a guide for you.
Content of Article:
- #1 What are AHA & BHA?
- #2 What Are AHAs?
- #3 The Benefits of AHAs
- #4 What Are BHAs?
- #5 The Benefits of BHAs
- #6 Can You Use Both AHA and BHA Together?
- #7 Are AHAs and BHAs Safe for Skin?
- #8 What is the Difference Between AHA and BHA?
- #9 Most Known AHA and BHA Components
- #10 Which One Should I Start Using First? AHA or BHA?
- #11 TIPS: How to Begin Exfoliating Acids?
#1 What are AHA & BHA?
We naturally exfoliate and replace our dead skin cells every day. But, because we don’t get enough sleep, sun damage and eat unhealthy foods, our skin may not be exfoliating properly and may begin to age prematurely. To prevent clogged pores, exfoliating your face once in awhile using an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) or beta hydroxy acid (BHA) can be helpful.
AHAs stand for (Alpha) α-hydroxyl acids and BHAs stand for (Beta) β-hydroxyl acids. They both provide excellent exfoliation for the skin. Be careful when using these products because they might make you more sensitive to the sunlight.
Now let’s dig a little deeper and examine the products individually in all their scope and look at the difference(s) between AHA and BHA.
#2 What Are AHAs?
Alpha hydroxyacetic (AHA) is an organic compound found in fruits. AHA is used in skin care products because it exfoliates the dead cells off your face and allows your new ones to come through. They help exfoliate dead skin cells from the epidermis by breaking down bonds between proteins and sugars. AHA products are usually recommended for normal to dry sun-damaged (or aging) skins because they contain ingredients that help to improve moisture levels naturally.
#3 The Benefits of AHAs
AHA’s have a number of benefits including anti aging properties. AHA are beneficial for all parts of the body including the face. They help remove dead cells from the top layers of the epidermis and increase cell turnover. They gently break up the bonded molecules of dead skin cells. Once cut loose, these cells can then be shed, or exfoliated.
As an AHA, Retinol helps increase the number of fibroblast cells, which produce more collagens, leading to firmer looking skin. It also decreases the rate at which fat cells break down, helping them look less puffy. And because glycolic acid reduces inflammation and redness, it helps prevent hyperpigmentation from forming. AHA products have been proven effective at reducing the visible effects of aging caused by UV rays.
#4 What Are BHAs?
BHA stands for beta-hydroxy acid. Is salicylic acid – one of the most popular acne-fighting ingredients out? Yeaps girl, it is. BHAs are organic carboxylic acids that work at the surface and in the deeper layers of your face (pores). They’re oil soluble, so they’re best for people who have combination/oiled complexions that get clogged easily. BHAs differ from AHAs in that they have one less OH than an AHA but two more carbons than an AHA.
#5 The Benefits of BHAs
Using BHA products provides skincare benefits similar to those from using an acidic cleanser, but without the harshness. It’s true that salicylic acid can be found in many products for oily skin, but it’s not just there because it makes oil go away. Salicylic acid has other functions besides exfoliating skin. For example, it helps get rid of blackheads by opening up clogged pores. It kills bacteria that cause pimples by increasing their sensitivity to oxygen. And it improves cell turnover which means less flakiness and fewer breakouts.
It’s well-known for its ability to kill germs. And because it doesn’t cause any side effects at high doses, doctors recommend using it to treat certain types of minor skin issues. As far as anti-aging ingredients go, salicylic acid may be slightly less effective than some AHA products. But as an ingredient for acne treatment, it has one big advantage: Because it works so well at removing surface lesions, it doesn’t need to penetrate too deeply into pores.
#6 Can You Use Both AHA and BHA Together?
You can use AHAs and BHAs together. Both acids produce different results so be sure to experiment to find out what works best for you. If you’re not happy with the way your skin reacts, change up your routine to see if something else performs better.
If you have several issues, using both an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) and beta hydroxy acid (BHA) together might be the best way to achieve consistent results.
#7 Are AHAs and BHAs Safe for Skin?
While using an AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) and BHA (beta hydroxy acid) cleanser may not damage your face if they’re properly applied, both of these acids increase the strength of the epidermis and dermis layers of your facial tissue.
For best skin benefits, AHA and BHAs should ideally be formulated within a pH (acidity/alkalinity) range between 3–4. Paulas Choice skincare products are formulated to be as efficient, gentle, and effective as possible. All of our pH-balanced AHA and BHA formulas are fragrant free. Each formula includes an array of skin-nourishing ingredients.
#8 What is the Difference Between AHA and BHA?
In fact, we have examined the difference(s) between AHA and BHA in detail. But I want to summarize.
For most people using these products, they recommend using one of these two types depending on whether the person has deeper issues such as cystic breakouts or just regular breakout skin.
For instance, for issues like dry skins, AHA is the way to go. However, if your goal is to exercise just the top layer of the face, then BHA would be better than AHA because they’re both oil soluble. But if your goal is to get rid of your wrinkles overnight, then you’d want to use a retinol product. You may also want to consider masks, creams, lotions, and oils.
We have prepared a detailed list of face masks that you can prepare at home with your own materials. Here is our article: How to Make Easy DIY Face Mask for ACNE, DULL SKIN AND DARK CIRCLES | Step by Step Guide
You can also take a look at our content to choose the most effective face serum for your skin. Here is our article: How Do I Choose The Right Face Serum for My Skin Type?
Markowitz cautions against using AHA/BHA products daily for their potential side effects—in particular, the potential drying up of your skin. Therefore, use them occasionally to brighten your face rather than everyday so that your skin doesn’t get dehydrated.
#9 Most Known AHA and BHA Components
- Glycolic acids are one of the most popular anti-aging ingredients used in cosmetics because they penetrate deeply into the skin to smooth out wrinkles and lighten dark spots. It helps promote skin regeneration and increases the production of healthy new cells.
- Another commonly used product containing lactic acid is Glucerna. Dead cells on our body are natural – they’re part of regular cell turnover. So, there’s no need to use exfoliants to remove them. It helps improve skin elasticity and moisture content.
- Salicylic acid is a milder form of aspirin that is usually used for pain relief, but salicylic acids are often prescribed to dissolve dead skin cells and unblock clogged poresses. It also treats oily skin conditions like rosacea and acne.
- Retinol is one of several types of vitamins known as antioxidants who fight signs of aging. When applied regularly, it moisturizes the skin and prevents future acne outbreaks.
- Vitamin C is important for healthy skin. It boosts collagen production and strengthens the elastic and dermal fibers. It helps heal injuries and repair damage to tissue.
#10 Which One Should I Start Using First? AHA or BHA?
It probably isn’t necessary to use both an AHA and BHAs exfoliant twice per week. However, experiment to see which combinations and frequencies of applications offer the most effective results for you.
Applying both an oil and a salicylic acid exfoliant together is fine if they’re not too thick. However, you shouldn’t delay using them because they might interfere with each other. You can easily use them together right away.
You don’t need to spend hours on end using both an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) and beta hydroxyl acid (BHA) product at once. Instead, you can use them alternately throughout the day for maximum results. Most people enjoy the benefits of both when they’re used together.
Here are some suggestions for alternating between AHA and BHA skin care products and how frequently you should exfoliate:
- Exfoliating may be done once daily, in the morning or evening.
- If you want to alternate between two different types of exfoliants (AHA or BHA), just choose which type you’d like to exfoliate with every day for a few weeks and then switch to the other type the next time. Alternatively, you could stick with one type of exfoliant throughout the entire program.
- You could use both an acid (like glycolic) in the morning and an enzyme (like salicylic) in the evening. This would help break down dead skin cells during the day and prevent new ones from forming.
- Alternatively, you may try using varying concentrations of BHA or AHA products. For example, use a 1% product for one week; then switch to a 2% exfoliator for another week; then go back to using 1% again.
- Once per month, use a stronger form of AHAs or BHAs in your at-home skin care regimen.
- Ultimately, one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to AHA and BHA. There’s no single right answer—it’s all about finding out what works best for yourself and then making adjustments accordingly. You’ll soon discover that AHA and BHA are so easy to use that they become part of your daily routine without you even realizing!
#11 TIPS: How to Begin Exfoliating Acids?
- When using an exfoliant with alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), Mackenzie Paterson’s Golden Rule for best results goes something like this: “Slow and Steady Wins the Game.” If you have reactive skin or are particularly sensitive, however, you may want to start out by testing a small spot (such as a finger tip) on your arm first, and observe how your skin reacts to the treatment before moving onto larger patches.
- It’s important to follow the directions when applying any acid products — if they say not to use them within 24 hours, don’t use them within 24 hours! Also, it’s good to know that a strong pH level can damage the collagen and elastin fibers in your body, so be careful when deciding which products to use.
- If everything feels okay, try incorporating the products into your daily routine. Start off by applying them twice a week and build up from there.
- ACIDs are now available in almost every type of product — including moisturizers, cleansers, etc. — which means they’re easy to incorporate into daily routines. To start out, use either an exfoliator (which can be found in most facial care lines) or a face wash (which we’ve already discussed).
- You may start out by using lactic, glycolic, and salicylic acids because they’re milder and easier to use than phenol, retinol, and alpha hydroxy acids.
- If you think about using any product containing AHAs/BHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) then make sure to apply sunscreen every day to avoid burning or becoming more sensitive to UV rays. Also steer clear of high SPFs (sun protection factors) during holidays because they can dry out the delicate area where the pores open up.
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