by BR Amelia
I love almonds. They're a snack. They're great in muesli. And ground almonds in place of flour in a brownie is chef's kiss. Another reason almonds are nothing short of awesome? The sweet almond's cousin, the bitter almond, is a super skin care ingredient! What the heck am I on about? Read on...
What makes bitter almonds so sensational in the skin care realm?
In a nutshell (pun so intended), bitter almonds (which you do NOT want to eat - poison alert!) are responsible for mandelic acid, and mandelic acid is an AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) that is not only powerful in its ability to help skin, but gentle in the way it does so. That's because mandelic acid has a larger molecular size, which means it will be absorbed more slowly into the skin, therefore making the skin less likely to react badly.
What are the benefits of mandelic acid?
Mandelic acid has as many benefits to skincare, as sweet almonds have to cooking. It helps promote exfoliation, is said to brighten skin, reduce the look of hyper-pigmentation, promote collage production, oh, and it's antibacterial, so can help blemish-prone skin.
Basically, using mandelic acid has the potential to leave your skin clearer, more even in tone and texture, and plumper, with a reduction in the appearance in fine lines.
Is it suitable for everyone?
While mandelic acid is considered one of the gentler AHAs, therefore making it less likely to irritate sensitive skin, it's still important to patch test before going all in. Another thing we all need to know, is that mandelic acid shouldn't be layered with a retinol or other acids, be it BHAs or AHAs, as doing so can damage your skin barrier and/or cause inflammation. So if you want to try mandelic acid, but also want to keep up with your current skincare that might contain other acids or retinoids, be sure to use it on alternate days. Lastly, do use sunscreen religiously if you're using actives in your skin care regime. Even better, use sunscreen daily no matter what.
What skincare contain's mandelic acid?
Most often you can find mandelic acid in serums, chemical exfoliants, peels, cleansers, and toners. As always, if you're going to try a product containing a new-to-you ingredient, always read and follow the instructions, and cease use if irritation occurs.
So, my lovelies, are you already aboard the mandelic acid train? Or is it an ingredient you'd like to try? And has anyone else's love of almonds just levelled up? Get chatting below!