Alpha Hydroxy Acids
Indications – Helps clear blemishes, hydrates the skin, and lightens pigment spots.
Actions – Loosens one to several layers of dead cells clinging to the skin’s surface by dissolving the glue-like lipids holding the cells together.
Definition as cosmetic (FDA) – AHA’s work on the skin’s surface to produce surface improvements such as creating smoother lines, freeing pores of clogged cells and lightening pigment marks.
History of Alpha Hydroxy Acids
- Use of aged wine in France as “Youth Cream” over 200 years ago.
- Use of lemon and other fruit in skin tonics, Hungary, and other European countries.
- Use of naturally occurring non-toxic acids in other fruits, vegetables, sugar cane and sour milk.
- Acid based peels with AHA concentrations over 20% and used for over five minutes, are administered by Doctors (with local anethstesia and with heart monitoring for cardiac irregularities if over 50%) to help with severe acne and skin rejuvenation.
- Cosmetic industry use increases – with chemists manufacturing AHA product approved by the FDA.
- Because the base of AHA originates from natural substances, the government considers AHAs as cosmetics and do not require stiff federal regulation. As a result, beauty parlors now perform AHA peels.
- By 1993, over 50 new products containing AHAs were introduced into the U.S marketplace.
Benefits of Alpha Hydroxy Acids
- AHA’s dissolve the glue like lipids holding dead cells together.
- When dead cells are decreased, fewer cracks and fissures can lead to irritation.
- Surface lines even out.
- Dead cells plugging pores dissolve.
- Pigment that has built up in surface skin is removed.
- Cell renewal is returned to a rate of 30 years of age.
- Increased cell renewal causes cells to become denser and more compact, making your skin a more effective barrier to outside irritants.
- Denser skin means moisture is held in and skin becomes more pliable and supple.
- With the outer layer, corneum, less clogged and “cross-linked” with dead skin cells, the skin becomes nourished and moisturized from below, allowing the skin to become more elastic and less wrinkled.
- AHAs increase the acidity of skin, which helps cell renewal.
- Researchers have found the best results for cell renewal are seen between 3pH and 4pH with no benefits other than hydration noted above 5pH. (Walter Smith, PH.D Biochemist and Researcher)
Alpha Hydroxy Acids may contain:
- Lactic Acid – from soured milk or buttered milk, molasses, yogurt, honey, or bilberries, (Lactic Acid molecules are second only to Glycolic Acid in their small size and should be used in lesser amounts due to the higher degree of penetration that smaller molecules are capable of.) .
- Note: All our AHA! products contain lactic acids from the bilberry plant only, therefore making our product suitable for vegans & vegetarians.
- Tartaric Acid – from grapes, berries, currants, passion fruit, honeysuckle, and red wine.
- Citric Acid – from citric fruits of all types
- Malic Acid – from apples
- Glucnoic – acid from sugar cane or corn (the smallest molecule of all AHA’s, therefore the strongest and most irritating.
- Synthetic Versions – gluconolactone, hydroxy-caprylic acid