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The difference between AHA & BHA chemical peels (types of skin peel acids)

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Filed under Chemical Peels At Home

If you are a ‘skin peeler’ (you love skin peeling) then you are already aware of the fact that there are many different types of skin peels and it can seem a little over whelming.

I wrote this quick article to explain the first part of the basics. There are two different types of acid that is used in a  a face peel.  They are AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acid) and BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acid)

AHA – Alpha Hydroxy Acid. AHA’s are made up of either Glycolic acid or lactic acid. Glycolic acid is derived from sugar cane and Lactic acid is derived essentially from milk

BHA – Bets Hydroxy Acid. BHA’s is made from white willow bark with is literally bark from a tree. Salicylic acid is also what aspirin is made from.

The main difference between AHA and BHA is that BHA is oil soluble and AHA is not. Oil soluble is important especially when dealing with skin that gets congested. Skin that is prone to break outs (acne, pimples and blackheads) is mostly caused by your skins natural oil (sebum) in your skin pore along with a little dirt. The sebum and the dirt can combine and create a plug in your pore which will result in a pimple or blackhead.

BHA being oil soluble cuts through the sebum and can flush the pore out before a congested plug can occur. AHA’s cannot do this. In fact; often AHA’s can make the breakout situation worse by aggravating the dead skin cells that lie on the surface of your skin but not removing them. These dead skin cells can be dislodged just a little by AHA but not removed, so it can travel into a pore and create a congested plug. This is very rare t happen when dealing with BHA’s and s the reason why we choose Salicylic acid in our home peels for face peels.

NOTE – If you use glycolic acid make sure you combine it with a good skin resurfacing tool. A chemical peel is one option