Dermatologists Recommend the 12 Best Glycolic Acid Cleansers

When it comes to skincare, it's safe to say that no treatment is universal. But who would want that anyway? We love creating rituals that are as unique to our skin and our self-care needs. Don't you? But there is one well-known wonder product that does claim to suit all skin types and concerns: glycolic acid. It's the closest thing we've found to a one-stop solution. 

I'm always particularly cautious when applying anything to my face with acid in its name, but after learning more about the glycolic variety, I have embraced it with open arms. It is known as an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) and can be extra effective at getting deep into our pores. The compound is produced in plants as they photosynthesize, and therefore we also consume it frequently in our food, which should prove that it is safe.

It acts as a mild irritant in small quantities, helping to loosen dead skin cells and reveal the healthy dermis underneath. Many dermatologists and aestheticians recommend it for all skin types because, indirectly, it will help to heal your skin. It stimulates the production of collagen and elastin which are especially effective toward this end.

We consulted with Jennifer Herrmann, an MD at MFC Dermatology, and Gregory Dylan of Gregory Dylan Beauty for product recommendations. Find what fits your needs among the selections below.