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The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions for the Face & Body in 2017

The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions for the Face & Body

The Best Glycolic Acid Lotion for the Face & Body – Glycolic acid penetrates through the upper layer of the skin and works to constantly replace and rejuvenate the skin. It is one of the most effective ways to treat photoaged, dull, pigmented, and acne-prone skin.

The anti-aging effects of AHAs like glycolic and lactic acid have been proven time and time again through rigorous clinical studies.

The benefits of using this against having regular chemical peels is that this is a slower process and has zero downtime.

There will be no visible flaking as long as the skin is hydrated and moisturized with every use.

It is also essential that glycolic acid lotion is used in combination with gentle ingredients as much as possible in order to avoid any irritation or side-effects on the skin.

Glycolic acid lotion is also one of the cheapest and most effective treatments for Keratosis pilaris or chicken skin.

Recommended Skincare Routine with Glycolic Acid Lotion:

  1. Use gentle and soap-free cleansers to avoid irritations. If you choose cleansers for sensitive skin, you won’t go wrong.
  2. In the morning, the skin needs protection from the sun not just as a general rule but also to because glycolic acid increases the skin’s hypersensitivity to the sun. Apply a minimum 30 SPF.
  3. In the evening, the skin sets out to naturally repair itself. Apply the glycolic acid lotion right after cleansing to maximize its effect.

If you have very sensitive skin, you may want to start out using the product every other day instead of daily. You can increase the frequency and dosage over time as you see fit.

Our recommendations for the best glycolic acid lotions for the face & body are based on our comprehensive analysis of the product’s formulation, claims, value for money, and consumer reviews. We make an effort to be as objective as possible and give advice in good faith; however, our reviews may still contain conjectures and opinions based on our research and personal experiences.

It’s important to know that as with any product (especially cosmetics), what may be perfect for you may not be right for the next person. So as much as we want to guarantee that these will be everyone’s next holy grail, results can still be affected by individual factors like your current skin condition, the environment you’re in, use of the product, reaction to your other skincare, and so on. For best results, make sure to choose a product that is suited for your skin type and skin issues.

This website is for informational purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Product or service details are collected directly from the manufacturer and other reputable sources during the time of this review and cited in the Resources section. We try to keep on top of new formulations when we can and update our data accordingly.

At the end of every review, there will be a link for you to check current discounts and other customer reviews on Amazon. These, along with some other links that redirect you to third party sites, are affiliate links where we earn a small commission if you do decide to make a purchase. This is at absolutely no extra cost to you and will help in maintaining the quality of the site.

This website is our passion project, and our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. The choices we make take extensive research (which we actually enjoy because we’re weird and nerdy like that), including data from credible academic papers and user sources available.

Bottom Line: We objectively review a laundry list of top performing products, pick the best ones based on our results, and present them to you with all the key info so you can choose the most suitable one for your skin. If you decide to buy something, we earn a commission that helps cover site costs like hosting, design, research materials, etc. You don’t have to of course, thank you for visiting us nonetheless. 🙂

When choosing acids to incorporate in your skincare, make sure to consider your skin type and skin tolerance or sensitivity.

Epicuren Glycolic Lotion Skin Peel 5% 2oz

Epicuren Glycolic Lotion Skin Peel 5% 2oz

A good starting point for those who hasn’t had any experience with acids in their skincare.

This is also great for those with sensitive skin because the chances of flaking nor any irritation are low at this percentage.

It’s consistency is milky white and has a mild scent.

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Passion Naturals 6% AHA Serum with Hyaluronic Acid, Fruit Extracts, & Peptides - L-Arginine - (30ml)

A tiny step up from the previous 5% concentration. This formula is a combination of glycolic acid and other AHAs to help lighten dark spots and moisturise the skin.

It’s a great night cream, especially for mature skin who has had way too much time under the sun. It can brighten your complexion and keep the skin fresh and well exfoliated.

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Acne.org 6 oz. AHA + Glycolic Acid - 10%

The additional step in acne.org’s extremely popular Anti-Acne Treatment Line. This will help get rid of any hyperpigmentation from inflamed acne. The licorice extract will also help brighten the skin and calm any residual redness.

The product is ideally used in combination with topical acne treatments. It’s also formulated to work with all skin types–it provides hydration to dry skin and keeps oily skin at bay.

Ideal for all skin types, especially for oily and combination skin.

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Alpha Hydrox AHA Enhanced Lotion

This 10% anti-wrinkle lotion is one of the flagship products from Alpha Hydrox, one of the leading AHAs brands in the market. It comes highly recommended by several popular dermatologists like Dr. Oz & Dr. Roizen.

This product also has great reviews for treatment against keratosis pilaris or chicken skin.

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Glycolic Acid 15% Anti-Wrinkle Cream - Extra strength, Alpha Hydroxy Acid enhanced with Green Tea Extract

Even at 15%, this product delivers powerful AHA properties but can be gentle enough not to cause any visible peeling.

The moisturizer is light, non-greasy, and quickly absorbed so it’s perfect for those with oily skin.

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NeoStrata Lotion Plus AHA 15%, 6.8 Fluid Ounce

For normal to oily skin and those who are used to acids in their skincare.

This can work wonders for keratosis pilaris and comes highly recommended by dermatologists worldwide.

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Topix Pharm Glycolix Elite Facial Cream, 20%, 1.6 Fluid Ounce

A very popular glycolic acid face cream that has stood the test of time. It has green tea antioxidants as well as vitamins C, E, and A; which makes it great for mature skin and those who have worked their way up to this concentration.

It’s a rich cream that can provide great hydration for dry skin, but may not work as well for oily or combination skin.

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Donell AHA 20% Face and Body Care

Demonstrated in the above video and is highly recommended for mature skin. It’s a strong and very effective anti-aging cream that can work well against sun damage and pigmentation like freckles and sun spots.

It works from head to toe, but make sure to patch test and start from the rougher parts e.g. knees, elbows, etc. to avoid any irritations.

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Editor’s Choice: The Best Glycolic Acid Body Lotions


Glycolic acid body lotions exfoliate dead skin cells and keep the skin young and supple.

This is especially beneficial for dry skin and chicken skin, especially in areas like the knees, elbows, and hands.

For best results, use after bathing with an exfoliating body wash.

Gly 10% + Sal 2% Exfoliating Body Lotion - Enhanced with Green Tea | Papaya | Bearberry | Licorice | Amino Complex

A staple in my shower stall, this is an amazing exfoliant for those who want to effectively reduce any marks, scars, or stretch marks in their arms, back, or legs. It also works well to soften sun damaged and dry skin.

Perfect Image is known for their chemical peels and are able to incorporate an array of beneficial fruit extracts in their formulation, which gives them a unique edge compared to the others.

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Paula's Choice Resist Skin Revealing Glycolic Acid Body Lotion - 10% AHA with Antioxidants - 7 oz

I’m a big fan of Paula’s Choice and this does not disappoint. The brand is known for their AHA and BHA line.

This exfoliating body lotion is very hydrating but not greasy, so it’s perfect for use the winter.

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Glycolix 15% Body Lotion

A great product to slough off dry skin, especially in areas like the knees and elbows, to reveal soft and brighter skin. The concentration is a bit high though, so make sure to do a patch test if you have sensitive skin.

The size of the bottle is hefty as well so you don’t feel the need to use less, especially since it’s a body lotion.

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GLYTONE Exfoliating Body Lotion - 17.5% Glycolic Acid

A rich and nourishing body lotion with a solid 17.5% glycolic acid. The high concentration works to re-texturize rough bumps and dry patches. It visibly reduces discoloration due to sun exposure.

Amazing feedback from users with keratosis pilaris (small, hard bumps that may make your skin feel like sandpaper) and ingrown hairs.

You can use this daily on the back of the hands, arms, legs, and other parts of the body that need special attention. For best results, use after bathing with the Glytone Exfoliating Body Wash.

Fragrance-free.

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References:

Alam, M. (2003). Glycolic Acid Peels. Archives of Dermatology, 139(9).

Behm, B., Kemper, M., Babilas, P., Abels, C. and Schreml, S. (2015). Impact of a Glycolic Acid-Containing pH 4 Water-in-Oil Emulsion on Skin pH. Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 28(6), pp.290-295.

Evaluation and treatment of the Aging Face. (1996). Dermatologic Surgery, 22(5), pp.489-90.

Emedicine.medscape.com. (2016). Keratosis Pilaris Treatment & Management: Medical Care, Surgical Care, Consultations

Glytone-usa.com. (2017). Glytone USA.

Kornhauser, A. (2010). Applications of hydroxy acids: classification, mechanisms, and photoactivity. CCID, p.135.

WOLF, B., PASTER, A. and LEVY, S. (1996). An Alpha Hydroxy Acid Derivative Suitable for Sensitive Skin. Dermatologic Surgery, 22(5), pp.469-473.

Reviews:



The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions for the Face & Body in 2017 Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.8 based on 5 reviews
5 1

Glytone bargain!

★★★★★
5 5 1
The beauty clinic I go to has the Glytone body lotion. My aesthetician recommended it for my legs, says it works miracles for ingrown hairs. That clinic's products are waaay overpriced though so I never gave in. Good call because it's cheaper on Amazon! If I had known, I would've bought one sooner!

★★★★★
5 5 1
Nice roundup. Do you have body lotions that are lower strength? I have sensitive skin and I'm a bit hesitant to just jump into 10%. Maybe 5% like the face lotions? Thanks.

Skip the scrub

★★★★★
5 5 1
To anyone using this for KP, skip the shower scrubs and just use the lotion. The chemical exfoliation this does is actually gentler to the skin than the scrubbing. Avoids inflamed folliculitis too and any risks of spreading the infection.

★★★★☆
4 5 1
5% won't do much to be honest. You need at least 10% to see any changes.

★★★★★
5 5 1
Don't waste your money on the Acne.org lotion, didn't do a thing for me. Go for Glycolix Elite if you want effective, ultra strength AHA. (DO NOT USE ON SENSITIVE SKIN!)

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