What Is Lactic Acid, Plus the Best Skincare Products That Have It
If you are a runner or an athlete in general, you have probably heard a lot about lactic acid. The acid that builds up in your arms and legs after prolonged physical exertion. Many coaches, physical therapists, sports medicine experts, and the like will tell you that you need to do a thorough cool down after physical exertion to ensure that lactic acid does not build up in your muscles.
Your Skin Needs Lactic Acid
Because of how lactic acid is discussed in the athletic world, it has gotten a bit of a bad rap. However, the truth is that lactic acid can be pretty beneficial for your skin.
Lactic acid is an Alpha hydroxy acid and is often used in skincare products. In fact, a lot of dermatologists and other skin care professionals use lactic acid as part of their treatments. It’s also found naturally in milk, which is one of the primary reasons why milk-based treatments are commonly used.
Lactic acid has a lot of benefits for your skin. First of all, it is an excellent exfoliant, removing dead skin cells while cleansing your skin at the same time. It also helps to lighten dark spots and improve the look of lines and wrinkles on your face. This comes from its exfoliating properties, helping to remove dried and dead skin, bringing more vibrant skin cells to the surface, giving your face a youthful look.
Many realize that using products containing lactic acid regularly can have a dramatic impact on your skin. That is not just hype. Lactic acid does a fantastic job at removing dead skin and bringing those inner layers that help restore natural beauty.
In addition, using hydroxy acids is a gentler way to help promote the care of your skin. While some exfoliants can be pretty abrasive, lactic acid is a very delicate product to use to clean your skin. This is another reason why it has become so popular. Not only does it clean the skin, but it helps to keep it hydrated, and this is why it is commonly found in many skin moisturizers as well.
There Is a Drawback
In the interests of complete disclosure, it is essential to mention that there are some side effects that come with using lactic acid. Because it removes outer skin layers, it means that there is less protection for your skin against the sun. For those who already have sensitivity to the sun, it is important to use sunblock or other forms of protection to ensure that your skin is not vulnerable to UV damage.
Even people who do not normally have a sensitivity to the sun should be careful when first using lactic acid and lotions or cleansers. You may find that your skin does become sensitive when you are out in the sun, especially for prolonged periods of time. This is why it is important that you use sunscreen, at least for the first few weeks after beginning using products that contain lactic acid.
What to Find in a Product
With all that said, it is still quite beneficial to use a product containing lactic acid. However, we are not going to give you a specific product. You may find that there are certain brands that you like better. Certain products that you find work for you better and that you are loyal to. So, it is more about steering you toward the information necessary to get the right product for you.
When choosing an over-the-counter lotion or cleanser that contains lactic acid, you want to begin by using something that is low strength. It should have no more than 5% or 10% lactic acid at most. The reason behind this is that your skin is going to be a little sensitive to the effects of the sun when you first start using lactic acid. You want to give your skin some time to get used to the effects of how lactic acid will affect your skin. The best way to do this is by starting with products that have low dosages of lactic acid. This will help to keep you much safer initially while also getting the benefits you are looking for.
As your skin becomes used to the effects of lactic acid, then you can go for higher dosages. As much as 30%. A product that contains 30% lactic acid is indeed the highest level that you need. This will do a great job in cleaning your skin while also giving you the significant effects that come with seeing your skin begin to reverse its aging before your very eyes. You will be stunned by the effects, even in a short period of time.
One other word of caution for you. If you are using a 20% lactic acid product and you are seeing that the effects that it is producing are what you have been looking for, do not feel compelled to up the dose. Many people conclude that if 20% is working great for them, they might as well try 30%, and the effects will be even better. That is not necessarily true.
If you are getting the kind of effects at a lower dosage, be comfortable with that. Trying higher dosages may cause your skin to become irritated, leading to rashes, redness, and other types of blemishes. Instead, see the great benefits that lactic acid is already providing and love the look.
This is a great product. Regardless of the negative impression that lactic acid is given because of the athletic industry, it greatly benefits your skin. Used in reasonable dosages, you will begin to see your skin come alive. You will look younger than you have in years, and you will see those dark spots, wrinkles, and fine lines disappear. Before you know it, you will look and feel younger and more beautiful.