Acids in skin care

Glycolic acid – which reigns supreme on the list of popular acids in cosmetics – is a substance that can contribute to a wow effect, but only if there are no contraindications. Like retinol, it is a potent ingredient, so used carelessly, without knowledge or consultation with a specialist, it can cause damage.

Contraindications to treatments with acids

The following should be specified in this category:

  • pregnancy and lactation period,
  • broken continuity of the epidermis (this applies to damage, fresh scars, erosions, and superficial abrasions),
  • dermatological diseases,
  • active viral (e.g. herpes) and bacterial infection,
  • ongoing light therapy,
  • allergies,
  • the patient’s psycho-physical condition,
  • fresh tan.

Let us remind you once again that during acid treatment you must not expose yourself to the sun – we strongly advise you to cancel the solarium.
It is also recommended to be careful when using retinol, which may further irritate the skin.


You should not undergo treatments such as microdermabrasion, cavitation or waxing with patches at least a week before the treatment.
For men – shave your face the day before, not on the day of the procedure!


If we are honest with the specialist performing the procedure and we have not concealed any of the contraindications listed above, complications are extremely rare. However, if we did not admit something or did not listen to the recommendations after the procedure, it may end with an undesirable result. What are the most common complications after acid treatment?

  • Discolorations – the most well-known, most frequently occurring and most feared effects in this category. Discoloration appears when the dye is distributed evenly in the skin. This may happen due to an inflammatory reaction or irritation.
  • Demarcation lines – this is the result of visiting an untested specialist without the appropriate qualifications. Demarcation lines are the trace of the border on the skin where the preparation has been applied. There is a noticeable difference in the appearance of the skin. Therefore, it is important to apply acids to the entire area, not just a section of the skin.
  • Scarring – also the result of an improperly performed procedure. It occurs when the acid concentration is too high, the exposure time on the skin is too long or the neutralization is incorrect.
  • Persistent erythema – associated with individual hypersensitivity, but the main cause is incorrect adaptation of the active substance to the needs of the skin.

Is it worth using acids?

Looking at the above paragraphs, it looks like it is better to avoid acids… but luckily, appearances are deceiving! Acids have been used in cosmetics for years. There are several requirements that must be met for safe use, but if we take care of them, the result will be beautiful, refreshed, smooth skin.


There are as many indications for acid treatment as there are contraindications, maybe even more. When is it worth undergoing an acid treatment?

We most often associate acids with anti-aging treatments. Very rightly, because they achieve spectacular results in this field. The basic function of each acid in cosmetics is to stimulate microcellular renewal and exfoliation of dead epidermis cells. As a result, the calloused epidermis disappears and is replaced by fresh, smooth skin. This helps reduce existing wrinkles and delays the formation of new ones.

The use of acid is also recommended for acne-prone skin prone to impurities and imperfections. Specific acids (e.g. salicylic) have anti-inflammatory and antibiotic properties. Mandelic acid regulates the functioning of the sebaceous glands – overproduction of sebum exacerbates the problem of acne.

Types of acids

Below you will find a list of various acids, and their properties and indications for use.

Mandelic acid

It is used for oily and combination skin prone to acne. It regulates the work of sebaceous glands, the overproduction of which causes pollution and excessive “shining” of the skin. Thanks to its structure similar to antibiotics, it has a strong antibacterial effect, which inhibits the development of acne. One of its advantages is safety – mandelic acid, both at home and in a beauty salon, can be used all year round. Mandelic acid is obtained from almonds, cherries and apricots.

You will find it in the hydratore

Glycolic acid

Glycolic acid – the most popular in cosmetology – is indicated both for seborrheic skin, with enlarged pores, struggling with acne and lumpy acne, as well as for flabby skin prone to wrinkles. Glycolic acid loosens intercellular connections in the stratum corneum of the skin. It stimulates the exfoliation of dead epidermis cells, thus improving the absorption of active ingredients contained in other care and medicinal products. It stimulates microcirculation, improving oxygenation and micro-nutrition of dermis cells, and thus helps remove toxins. It is most often obtained from sugar cane.

You will find it inNovo and Novo Forte

Lactic acid

It is used on all skin types due to its wide range of applications depending on the concentration. Lactic acid has properties typical of AHA acids – it exfoliates and moisturizes the skin, and has anti-aging and antibacterial properties in equal measure. Balances the skin’s pH. It has a beneficial effect on the color and is also used to treat discolorations resulting from exposure to solar radiation. It is obtained in the process of sugar fermentation carried out by lactic acid bacteria.

You will find it in the NMF xpress treatment

Pyruvic acid

Used for skin affected by photoaging, with acne scars and keratinization disorders. Pyruvic acid is related to lactic acid. It has seboregulating and antibacterial properties, and at the same time reduces the adhesion of corneocytes (dead cells responsible for the production of keratin in the skin). Pyruvic acid is naturally found in apples and fermented fruits.

You will find it in the studio.peel treatment 25% pyruvic acid + lactic acid

Salicylic acid

It is primarily suitable for the care of oily and acne-prone skin. Salicylic acid has anti-inflammatory properties. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antibiotic properties, it supports the healing of inflammation. Thanks to its effective penetration through the protective layer of the skin (sebum), it reaches the level of the hair follicles, where it affects the sebaceous glands, regulating their functioning. Naturally, its main source is white willow root.


The main common feature of acids is the stimulation of micro-cellular renewal and supporting the exfoliation of dead epidermis cells. Reducing the stratum corneum not only results in a visibly fresher appearance of the skin, but also improves the absorption of active ingredients in other creams. Better absorption of active ingredients means more effective care. Depending on the skin’s predispositions, after using a cream with glycolic acid at night, the effects can be impressive in the morning. Regular use of acids provides the user with soft, smooth skin, reduced wrinkles and a reduced number of imperfections.


City SUN –when we talk about acids, mention of photoprotection is necessary. The use of acids excludes exposure to the sun. It is recommended to use a cream with a high filter regardless of the season. City SUN SPF50+ is a cream that combines moisturizing effects with the highest possible sun protection. Additionally, it absorbs quickly and leaves no white marks!

S.O.S. – chemical peels, i.e. treatments based on high concentrations of acids, irritate the skin. It is worth having a preparation at home that will accelerate the healing of the epidermis, moisturize it and make it elastic.S.O.S. is a cream that was previously used only in beauty salons and aesthetic medicine. Now available for home care! It will also work well in winter, when the skin is irritated by frost and wind.

Novo – this is the first step for people who have not used acids before but want to try. A safe concentration of glycolic acid (8%) may sting a little in the worst case – it will not burn or cause discoloration. After use (even for the first time), the skin becomes visibly rejuvenated and smooth.

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