Acne-Prone Skin AHA & BHA (Acids) Dry Skin Lotions & Moisturizers Mature Skin Normal Skin Oily Skin Sensitive Skin

The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions & Creams for the Face & Body

Best Glycolic Acid Lotions & Creams for the Face & Body

The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions & Creams – A glycolic lotion or cream is one of the most effective ways to treat dull, pigmented, and acne-prone skin.

This type of acid or AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) penetrates through the upper layer of the skin and works to constantly replace and rejuvenate the skin. It increases the production of elastin and collagen, as well as reduce hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone. The anti-aging effects of AHAs have been proven time and time again through rigorous clinical studies.

The benefit of using a glycolic acid lotion against having regular chemical peels is a gradual process that 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 creams are used in combination with gentle ingredients as much as possible in order to avoid any irritation or side-effects on the skin.

Glycolic acid lotions are also one of the cheapest and most effective treatments for acne-prone skinKeratosis pilaris or chicken skinsun-damaged skin, wrinkles, and fine lines

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

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 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.


Video: 20% Glycolic Acid Lotion – If you want to LOOK YOUNGER, you HAVE to EXFOLIATE! 

Disclaimer Notice

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

Recommendations are based on our research, results, a comprehensive analysis of the products' formulation, claims, and value for money. We make an effort to be as objective as possible and give advice in good faith; however, our reviews are 100% honest and therefore may still contain conjectures and opinions based on our 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 products that are suited for your skin type and skin issues.

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.

There are millions of products and services that relate to beauty and health. However, we have and will only recommend products or services that we have had experience with or thoroughly investigated. Our content is not influenced by affiliates but by what we truly feel will deliver value to you. We are deeply passionate about health and wellness, and one of our goals is to help you make educated choices so you can get closer to your #skincare goals. 🙂

Thank you for visiting and here’s to being the best version of yourself!

Editor’s Choice: The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions and Creams for the Face & Body


We’ve chosen the best glycolic acid creams and lotions for every available % concentration based on our analysis, specifications, value for money, and consumer reviews.

The list starts with face creams and finishes with body lotions. The strength of glycolic acid also goes up as it goes on.

If this is your first time incorporating acids in your regime, it’s best to start with a low percentage and work your way up.

Epicuren Glycolic Lotion Skin Peel 5% 2oz

Epicuren Glycolic Lotion Skin Peel 5% 2oz

A good starting point for those who haven’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.

Its consistency is milky white and has a mild scent.

Cruelty-free and recycle-friendly.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

Passion Naturals 6% AHA Serum with Hydrating 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 moisturize 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.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

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 like benzoyl peroxide. 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.

Dye-free, fragrance-free. Comes at approx. pH 4.0-4.1.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

Alpha Skin Care - Essential Renewal Lotion, 10% Glycolic AHA

Alpha Skin Care – Essential Renewal Lotion, 10% Glycolic AHA

This 10% anti-wrinkle lotion is the new incarnation of the popular Alpha Hydrox AHA Enhanced Lotion, from one of the leading AHAs brands in the market.

This product has great reviews for treatment against hyperpigmentation, scarring, and keratosis pilaris or chicken skin.

The 10%-14% strength is available in lotion & cream (dry to normal skin), gel (oily skin), and serum (all skin type) forms. The lotion, in particular, comes at a pH level of 4.0

Paraben-free and fragrance-free. Not tested on animals.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

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

Even at 15%, this glycolic acid face cream delivers powerful AHA properties but can be gentle enough not to cause any visible peeling. This formula is unbuffered, meaning you’ll still get it at full strength so use very sparingly (dime-sized) for the entire face, neck, or decollete. This also means a single tub can last you a while.

It corrects enlarged pores, skin tone and texture, dullness, sagging, and age spots.

It’s also enhanced with green tea extract that helps regenerate collagen growth and cell production naturally, for healthier and younger-looking skin.

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

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

NeoStrata Lotion Plus AHA 15%, 6.8 Fluid Ounce

NeoStrata Lotion Plus AHA 15%, 6.8 Fluid Ounce

Neostrata is a brand that comes highly recommended by dermatologists worldwide.

This glycolic acid lotion is a highly effective exfoliant that reduces visible signs of aging, rough skin, dryness, photodamage and scaling. Continued use will improve skin texture and clarity.

This is for normal to oily skin and those who are used to acids in their skincare as this comes in at a pH 3.7.

Suitable for face and body, this can also double as an AHA body lotion and works wonders for keratosis pilaris (chicken skin).

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

Topix Pharm Glycolix Elite Facial Cream, 20% – with Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Vitamin A & CoQ10 (1.6 Fluid Ounce)

A very popular and one of the best glycolic acid cream that has stood the test of time. It pairs ultra-pure crystalline glycolic acid and green tea antioxidants as well as vitamins C, E, A, and CoQ10. This makes it great for nourishing skin while providing antioxidant protection from free radicals.

Targets large pores, excess oil, dry skin, and uneven skin texture. 

This has an elegant, light formula that dries to a matte finish, and can be used as a day and night cream.

Comes in a 10%, 15%, and 20% strengths, and clock in at a pH level of 4.0.

Non-comedogenic (will not clog pores). Fragrance-free, Paraben-free, Gluten-free, and Oil-free.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

Donell AHA 20% Face and Body Care

Donell AHA 20 Face and Body Moisturizer

Demonstrated in the above video, this glycolic acid moisturizer 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 sunspots.

Keeps skin smooth, supple, and flake-free. This is formulated with the roughest parts in mind, for an all-body moisturizer. Also helps soften callouses, reduce skin cracking and flaking, and increase moisturization.

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.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

2% Salicylic + 10% Glycolic Acid 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 is able to incorporate an array of beneficial fruit extracts in their formulation, which gives them a unique edge compared to the others.

Green tea and chamomile provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-bacterial benefits. Cucumber extract is rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as enzymes for added skin-tightening. Salicylic acid (BHA or beta hydroxy acid) provide deep cleansing & unclogging pores. Tea tree oil has been proven to effectively kill the acne bacteria propionibacterium acnes.

No Parabens, Sulfates, or Phthalates.
Gluten-free. Cruelty-free — no animal testing on ingredients or products.
Recycled Materials–Sustainable Raw Materials & Practices.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

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

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 lines.

This leave-on exfoliant improves the appearance of hard, clogged, red bumps on arms and legs. It removes any build-up of dead skin in a non-abrasive way, revealing softer and smoother skin from the neck down. It also hydrates the skin and softens any dryness on the body. The pH ranges from 3.5-3.9.

This exfoliating body lotion is creamy yet lightweight, very hydrating but not greasy. Perfect for use in the winter.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

Glycolix 15% Body Lotion

Glycolix 15% Body Lotion – with Green Tea, Aloe Vera, Vitamin C, A, E, and CoQ10

A great product to slough off dry skin, especially in areas like the knees and elbows, to reveal soft and brighter skin. This product is especially effective on Keratosis Pilaris or chicken skin, acne, pigmentation, and dry skin.

The concentration is a bit high though, so make sure to do a patch test if you have sensitive skin.

This lotion is enhanced with a rich blend of antioxidants like green tea; vitamins A, E, C, and CoQ10; and aloe vera to calm and nourish the skin. This also helps fortify your moisture barrier.

It’s fast-absorbing and non-drying.  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.

Gluten-free, Oil-free. Non-comedogenic (will not clog pores).

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

GLYTONE Exfoliating Body Lotion - 17.5% Glycolic Acid

GLYTONE Exfoliating AHA Body Lotion – 17.5% Glycolic Acid

A rich and nourishing AHA body lotion with a solid 17.5% glycolic acid. Its primary target is to correct body dryness, with its high concentration working to re-texturize rough bumps, dry patches, scaly plaques, cracked heels, elbows, and knees. 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 lotion 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.

Check for discounts & customer reviews on Amazon

References


  • Acne.org Products – Cleanser, Benzoyl Peroxide, Moisturizer & More. (2018).
  • 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. [Source]
  • Bergfeld, W., Tung, R., Vidimos, A., Vellanki, L., Rernzi, B., & Stanton-Hicks, U. (1997). Improving the cosmetic appearance of photoaged skin with glycolic acid. Journal Of The American Academy Of Dermatology36(6), 1011-1013. doi: 10.1016/s0190-9622(97)80290-3
  • donell® | The Science of Skin Care. (2018).
  • Epicuren Discovery – Skin Care Products. (2018).
  • Emedicine.medscape.com. (2016). Keratosis Pilaris Treatment & Management: Medical Care, Surgical Care, Consultations. [Source]
  • Evaluation and treatment of the Aging Face. (1996). Dermatologic Surgery, 22(5), pp.489-90. [Source]
  • Extreme, B. (2018). Beauty Facial Extreme.
  • Funasaka, Y., Sato, H., Usuki, A., Ohashi, A., Kotoya, H., & Miyamoto, K. et al. (2001). The efficacy of glycolic acid for treating wrinkles: analysis using newly developed facial imaging systems equipped with fluorescent illumination. Journal Of Dermatological Science27, 53-59. doi: 10.1016/s0923-1811(01)00119-0
  • Glytone-usa.com. (2017). Glytone USA.
  • Kaminaka, C., Uede, M., Matsunaka, H., Furukawa, F., & Yamomoto, Y. (2014). Clinical Evaluation of Glycolic Acid Chemical Peeling in Patients with Acne Vulgaris: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Split-Face Comparative Study. Dermatologic Surgery40(3), 314-322. doi: 10.1111/dsu.12417
  • Kornhauser, A. (2010). Applications of hydroxy acids: classification, mechanisms, and photoactivity. CCID, p.135. 
  • Neoteric Cosmetics – Proven Skin & Hair Care Products. (2018).
  • Passion Naturals. (2018).
  • Physician Grade Anti-Aging Skin Care – NeoStrata. (2018).
  • Shop Paula’s Choice | Paula’s Choice. (2018).
  • The Art of Skin Perfection – Perfect Image. (2018).
  • Topix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | Medical Grade Skin Care Solutions Dispensed by Physicians. (2018).
  • WOLF, B., PASTER, A. and LEVY, S. (1996). An Alpha Hydroxy Acid Derivative Suitable for Sensitive Skin. Dermatologic Surgery, 22(5), pp.469-473. [Source]

Reviews:





The Best Glycolic Acid Lotions & Creams for the Face & Body Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.8 based on 9 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!
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.
5% won't do much to be honest. You need at least 10% to see any changes.
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!)
Nice list, I’ve settled on the Glycolix 15%.

Name
Email
Review Title
Rating
Review

1 Comment

  • Reply Belkis September 20, 2018 at 5:11 pm

    Thank you soo much for this amazing article !!! I truly needed it!!! Specially with my skin problems !

  • Leave a Reply