Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) are a popular set of chemical exfoliators often used in skincare. They are also quite popular among regular users of chemical exfoliation to gently slough off dead skin cells and reveal newer skin underneath. And even though they are quite effective, beauty enthusiasts are always on the lookout for more alternatives and PHAs, aka polyhydroxy acids, are what they have their eyes set on. Leading the charge of the PHA boom is lactobionic acid — the gentler cousin of AHAs that promises proper exfoliation without any irritation!

 

01. What is the source of lactobionic acid?

01. What is the source of lactobionic acid?

Like its AHA counterpart glycolic acid being derived from sugar, lactobionic acid also has a food source. The gentle giant is the oxidised form of lactose, which is derived from milk and has a larger molecular size as compared to AHAs. This means that it won’t penetrate deeper into your skin to cause irritation or sensitivity from regular use. The compound is also naturally produced in your body, making it a safe ingredient to use for all skin types.

 

02. What are the benefits of lactobionic acid?

02. What are the benefits of lactobionic acid?

Similar to other chemical exfoliants, lactobionic acid also offers a variety of benefits for the skin:

  • It exfoliates the top, shallow layers of the skin, making it a great option for sensitive skin types who cannot handle deeper forms of exfoliation.
  • It functions as a humectant to moisturise your skin and retain hydration for long hours.
  • The compound’s antioxidant nature lends a subtle radiance to your skin and helps improve skin tone and texture.
  • Some studies have shown lactobionic acid can protect against sun damage and strengthen the skin’s lipid barrier to protect it from other environmental aggressors.
  • The compound is also sought after for its ability to fade fine lines and hyperpigmentation on the skin.
  • It is also a key ingredient in many glow-boosting products that help add sheen to your complexion.
 

03. Are there any adverse effects of using lactobionic acid for skin?

03. Are there any adverse effects of using lactobionic acid for skin?

As mentioned earlier, lactobionic acid is a lot gentler than a potent exfoliator like mandelic acid, but it is still an acid at its core. If you belong to a group of people whose skin acts up with everything, this ingredient can cause irritation. This can happen if you are using a really concentrated product or doing it multiple times a day of the week. Before adding it to your routine, do a patch test to determine if your skin can take it well. Once you are sure, start slowly with once a day and a couple of times a week to allow your skin time to get used to it.

 

04. How to make the most of lactobionic acid for the skin?

04. How to make the most of lactobionic acid for the skin?

There are a couple of things to keep in mind while using lactobionic acid for the skin.

  • The ingredient can be used in the form of scrubs, serums and face masks.
  • It should always be used on freshly cleansed skin and layered with a moisturiser to ensure it stays locked in.
  • Be careful about using other physical or chemical exfoliators on your skin in combination with the ingredient. To be on the safe side, use only one kind of chemical exfoliant in a single day.
  • Always start with a low percentage and gradually increase the intensity while closely observing how your skin behaves.
  • The frequency of use depends entirely on the skin type and your specific skin concerns.