Chemical Exfoliants

DMK Klear Range


Chemical exfoliants are common in many skincare formulations.
But how do you know which one is right for you and how to use them? Chemical exfoliants such as Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs) and Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) can have a variety of benefits for the skin and can play a key role in your routine if used correctly. BHAs and AHAs work by assisting to remove the build-up of dead cells without harsh scrubbing to reveal a more radiant complexion. As great as they can be, chemical exfoliants can lead to irritation and reactions if they are used without professional guidance. 


Alpha hydroxy acids or AHAs are water-soluble acids that are often derived from fruits. A popular AHA used in skincare is glycolic acid. Other examples include lactic and citric acid. These acids are often found in products such as toners, cleansers, exfoliators, and sometimes serums. As AHAs are water-soluble, they can’t penetrate through the skin’s natural oils, but they are great for helping to even out skin tone and fighting acne by helping to improve the turnover of dead skin cells. As well as their exfoliating benefits, AHAs can help to stimulate collagen production and reduce the appearance of fine lines. It is important to note that AHAs are best used infrequently, as daily use can lead to over-exfoliating the skin. DMK’s Micro Peel features a blend of AHA’s to improve the skin’s texture and should be used once a week between DMK treatments.    

Beta Hydroxy Acids or BHAs are naturally occurring substances and are derived from sources such as willow bark and sweet birch. They are oil-soluble, meaning they can penetrate deeper into the pore. Salicylic acid is the main BHA used in skincare and might be recommended by your DMK Skin Technician if you suffer from acne-prone skin. BHAs have incredible antibacterial and inflammatory properties and can also be great for reducing blackheads as well as pimples. How often you can use BHAs will depend on the percentage in the formulation and your skin condition. You can find BHAs in DMK’s Klear Collection for acne-prone skin.


With all the choices of skincare products on the market, it can be very easy to over-exfoliate your skin with both BHAs and AHAs. It is also important to slowly introduce new products with acids to your routine to test your skin’s reactivity. Here at DMK, we always recommend a consultation with a DMK Skin Technician before adding exfoliating products to your routine to ensure optimal skin functioning. When used under the guidance of professional, exfoliating products can be a wonderful addition to your routine and can provide a range of benefits. Talk to your Technician about your skin concerns and if they think a BHA or AHA is right for you. Using too many exfoliating products in combination with other active skincare ingredients, such as retinoids, can lead to damage of the outermost layer of your skin, so if you are unsure, always talk to your professional for guidance. 

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