Scrubs or acids? First, to exfoliate is to remove the surface of a bone, the skin etc. or to throw off in scales, splinters, etc. All skins need to shed old cells to facilitate new ones. Animals do it and we do it naturally as well, but it helps when we add in products that facilitate turnover. I’ve been using Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid along with Madara Brightening AHA Peel Mask to great effect, so I wanted to share my results and maybe if you aren’t already, you’ll consider implementing products such as these into your skincare routine.
What is BHA?
Beta Hydroxy Acid is Salicylic Acid. Yet it all begins in the bark of the willow tree, which was used as far back as the days of Hippocrates as a pain reliever and fever reducer. Salicylic acid is also naturally occurring in unripened fruits such as blueberries, olives, tomatoes, grapes and some spices.
BHA is oil soluble and is effective for oily and acne prone skin types.
Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid.
Founded by Paula Begoun in 1995 after a lifelong battle with eczema and acne, Paula’s Choice is a tightly curated, straightforward skincare brand. Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid includes Salicylic Acid along with Green Tea extract. BHA in skincare is found to be highly effective at 2% and so this formula is a targeted way to exfoliate the skin without relying on a physical scrub/ gommage.
Enzymatic (acid-based exfoliation) is my preferred method to eliminate old skin. I bought Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid as part of a selection of products from Beauty Expert, a British-based, online beauty website. Each month, they do a selection of products for a flat price that is a cost-effective way to try full-size products for less than one hundred dollars.
Admittedly, I was reluctant to use this product because my skin had finally recovered from leaving acid and plant based face masks and cleansers on too long. Despite that I soldiered on and so, this best selling, non-abrasive product should be applied by saturating a cotton pad and passing it over the face. I press it into my face with cotton and even bring it down to my neck, plus I pass the cotton over my ears as well and I also use it at the back of my neck. There’s no real scent to this product and upon contact with the skin there’s no burning, something I was quite apprehensive about. On the skin it feels like water but even after the first use, my skin looked brighter.
With consistent use my skin has evened out and brightened. Whiteheads and blackheads have been banished and I haven’t seen any rogue spots, not even around that time of the month. Although I have dry skin, this has not parched it nor has it negatively impacted it in anyway. Thus, I can say that I am quite impressed with this product, its efficacy and ability to produce results, in a short time.
What is AHA?
Alpha Hydroxy Acid is derived from lactic (milk) sugars and fruit sugars. When converted to acids, they are proven to help with removing dead skin by dissolving the substance that binds old cells to the surface of the skin. AHA stimulates collagen production, penetrates the surface layer of the skin, brightens the skin with prolonged use, smooths lines and reduces pigmentation. AHA’s work well with dry skin and skin that is sun damaged because they work to increase moisture and exfoliate on the surface of the skin.
AHA use increases sun sensitivity, so it is important that an effective sunscreen is part of your skincare routine.
Madara Brightening AHA Peel Mask
Madara Brightening AHA Peel Mask is an exfoliating peeling mask that delivers on radiance and cuts through all the dead bits residing on the surface of the skin. Formulated with Vitamin C from Quince fruit, Lactic Acid and Elderflower to soothe, this pale green cream is the advocate your skin needs. Smelling faintly of herbs blended with a scent reminiscent of citrus, this mask is cool on the skin and wastes no time at all in going to work. You feel it in the slight buzz as it sits on the skin, and as you move around the scent wafts gently about.
Madara Natural Skincare is a brand with Latvian roots. It boasts one of the leading research labs in Northern Europe and I came across the brand prior to my Beauty Expert purchase. Once I had the item I was intrigued, excited and ready to dive right in.
This mask diminishes lines, age spots, excavates clogged pores and even optimises skin’s absorption of other products in your routine. You have three to ten minutes with this mask. As an aside, I’d say to stick to the time frame specified on this and any other acids in mask form. Going beyond the specified time is unlikely to impart additional benefits, as experience has taught me.
Overall, Madara Brightening AHA Peel Mask is indeed a ‘green’ product that works just as hard as many other products. It will help skin to be re-invigorated, banish the signs of fatigue, cut through age spots, increase your glow factor and even help with acne. Please note this product is not recommended for hyper-sensitive and fragile skin.
Together, Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid along with Madara Brightening AHA Peel Mask is an optimised way to exfoliate and brighten the skin without having to rely on scrubs. AHAs and BHAs are a proven class of acids that are known to revolutionise the appearance of the skin and stimulate the production of collagen. As collagen production diminishes with age, including AHAs and BHAs and other skincare acids in your routine is paramount. Plus, there’s another acid product I used that you can see here. Otherwise, what have your experiences been with scrubs and acids? Chime in in the comments below with your thoughts, I’d be happy to hear from you and thank you!
*Photo credit for Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2%BHA Liquid first photo to Paula’s Choice Website