Glycolic Acid In Skincare: The Skin Types It Works Best On

There are many different skin conditions and issues that most of us experience. But among those, some of the most inevitable are the signs of aging, including wrinkles and fine lines. Next to those are acne and breakouts. If you are among those people who are fighting against these skin conditions, one of the best ingredients you should look for in skincare products is glycolic acid. It comes in different forms for skin care, such as creams, serums, and glycolic pads.

What’s great about glycolic acid is that aside from treating breakouts, it can also work best on hyperpigmentation, dullness, and signs of skin aging like wrinkles and fine lines. However, like any other product or ingredient for the skin, you need to ensure that it is safe to use on your skin. Remember that people have different skin types, which means that a product that is working on one person might not work well for you. If you’d like to know what skin types it works best on, read on as we’re giving you more information about glycolic acid in skincare.

What Does Glycolic Acid Do For The Skin?

Glycolic acid is an exfoliant that helps in shedding dead skin cells to reveal newer and brighter skin. It acts on the stratum corneum or the outermost layer of the skin, which is usually tightly packed layers of dead skin cells that are bonded together. When glycolic acid is applied to it, it loosens these bonds. When this happens, the tough and rough layers of the dead skin cells can be removed easier.

It is also a very small exfoliant that can get deeper into the skin, and that is where it does more serious work. It stimulates fibroblasts in the dermis to develop increased amounts of collagen. When collagen production is stimulated, it helps the skin feel firmer and minimizes fine lines and wrinkles at the same time. Between its superficial action on the outer layer of your skin and the work it does below, it can make your skin feel smoother and look more radiant.

How Is Glycolic Acid Used in Skincare?

If you intend to use skincare products with glycolic acid, make sure that you choose one that has safe ingredients. Also, as with any exfoliant, it is better to start small, especially if you have sensitive skin or if your skin is prone to irritation. The safest option is to use it in a face wash form. Using cleansers with glycolic acid can get your skin used to it.

If you are sure that your skin is up for glycolic, you can try it in a peel. It’s because glycolic acid seems to be most effective when administered as a chemical peel. For a safer procedure, this can also be done in a healthcare practitioner’s clinic or office, especially if you wish to use medical-grade peel pads that are stronger and have more potent effects. However, this is usually done in a monthly session.

If visiting a dermatologist monthly is costly for you, you can also opt for peel pads that you can use at home, like the Glycolic Acid Peel Pads by bloommy in the original formula, which can be used for exfoliating, moisturizing, and nourishing the skin. You can use it more regularly in your routine, as long as you are sure that your skin can tolerate it.

Is Glycolic Acid Best for All Skin Types?

After learning about what glycolic does to the skin and how it is used in a skincare routine, let’s now discuss the main topic, which is the skin types that glycolic acid works best on. According to dermatologists, glycolic acid is best for people who have normal, combination, and oily skin types. However, as with anything, it is not made for everyone.

People who have dry and highly sensitive skin usually react to glycolic acid with irritation. In fact, any form of glycolic acid might irritate their skins, whether it is in a topical form, home-use peeling pad, or an office-based peel method.

In addition to the skin type you have, you also need to consider a seasonal factor when using products with glycolic acid. For example, during the winter season, the barrier of your skin might be compromised. This is why most skin appears dry or chapped when it is cold. Therefore, when you use products with glycolic acid, it will penetrate deep, which may cause irritation.

On the other hand, sun exposure may increase the turnover of the skin, which is naturally exfoliating. During the summer season, glycolic acid is riskier because it can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Therefore, the only solution is, no matter the time of the year or where you are going, always put on some sunscreen, especially after using glycolic acid.

With this, we can say that glycolic acid is safe for most skin types, as long as your skin is not dry and sensitive. It might also help if you can find products that are made for sensitive skins, as they are possibly milder and safer to use.

What to Avoid When Using Glycolic Acid?

Glycolic acid is best used with other gentler exfoliators, such as salicylic acid. However, never use it together with other harsh or strong exfoliating ingredients, such as face scrubs, benzoyl peroxide, and retinol.

To avoid disaster, try to search for glycolic-based products that are made with a low percentage of other gentler exfoliants. Also, try to stick to serums and moisturizers that have hydrating ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid.


Glycolic acid is indeed a great ingredient to look for in skincare products, especially if you are combating signs of aging, like fine lines, creases, and wrinkles. Aside from that, it is also a great ingredient when it comes to removing pimples. However, before using any product, it is essential to consult with a dermatologist first. This way, you can be sure that using a glycolic acid-based product is beneficial for the type of skin that you have.