What is Alpha Hydroxy

Skin care forms an important sector in the cosmetic industry wherein new products keeps coming and promises of a healthy skin. Though all of them don’t keep up with such promise, there are still genuine products, that could actually do wonders on skin as promised, rather than just giving temporary effects which gets faded off over time. One such gift to the cosmetic industry which has taken skin care to all new heights is the Alpha Hydroxy Acids popularly referred as AHA.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids are natural acids which are produced and derived from the milk, sugar and fruits of certain plants which helps primarily in treating skin for wrinkles and acne. AHA is available in various forms and one of the best known forms is glycolic acid which is derived from sugar cane. However there are also other common forms in which Alpha Hydroxy acids come in, like lactic acid derived from milk, malic acid derived from pears and apples, citric acid which is derived from oranges and lemons and finally tartaric acid derived from grapes. This suggests the natural healing power which is in AHA.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids are in use for several years now and serves as a successful skin rejuvenating product by penetrating deep into the skin and works as an exfoliant. They work on the epidermis cells to make them unglued, letting the dead skin cells to wear off and allowing the skin to produce new cells giving a new room for fresh skin growth. It also enhances the production of collagen and elastin which helps in improving the conditions of wrinkles, roughness and pigmentation with consistent application thus giving a young, smooth look to the skin.  Acne scars can be reduced with AHA peels or lotions. Pigmentation of skin resulting from one of the skin disorders called melasma is also well treated with use of creams and lotions containing Alpha Hydroxy acids. There are evidences of sun damaged skin and dry skin getting treated with AHA peels and creams. AHA is one of the common additives used in various skin care precuts ranging from moisturizer, cleanser, facial mask and toner.

Though very effective, Alpha Hydroxy acids are supposed to be used with certain precautions especially to know the ph level and percentage of the product.  Thus a percentage of more than 10 % cannot be directly purchased over the counter without the prescription of a dermatologist. This is only to be free from the possible side effects of AHA which could skin irritation or sun sensitivity. These are the two common side effects of using AHA which could be traced with symptoms like redness, itching, burning or possible scarring of skin. Dark complexion people are even more at a risk, for the scarring pigment changes which could be visibly seen on the skin. So try and always use a sunscreen along with the usage of AHA containing products.