Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant Evaluation

Glycolic acid is all the fad in the mean time – and for a superb cause.

This chemical exfoliant fades away darkish spots, smooths out the feel of your pores and skin, and makes your complexion glow.

Considered one of my favorite exfoliants with Glycolic acid is Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant. Right here’s why:

What’s In Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant?


Glycolic acid is the smallest member of the Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) household, a gaggle of exfoliants that dissolves the glue that holds on pores and skin cells collectively, to allow them to slough off your pores and skin sooner.

As soon as they do, your complexion improves: its texture turns into softer to the contact; advantageous traces and darkish spots look rather less apparent; and the entire complexion is brighter. Plus, glycolic acid is hydrating, too.

Its small dimension is its energy: Glycolic Acid penetrates deeper than different AHAs, so it really works higher and sooner. The catch? That additionally makes it extra irritating.

It’s an amazing possibility for dry pores and skin that’s beginning to present solar injury. But when yours is so delicate that something irritates it, strive its cousin lactic acid as a substitute.

Associated: Glycolic Acid VS Lactic Acid: Which One Ought to You Use?


Doesn’t matter how gently you do it, the exfoliating course of at all times has the potential to be a bit irritating for pores and skin.

Enter skin-soothers. They relax irritation, soothe redness, and even present some antioxidant safety towards free radicals (the principle explanation for wrinkles).

The principle skin-soothers in Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant are:

Associated: Is Inexperienced Tea The Most Highly effective Antioxidant Of All?


A part of the glue that holds pores and skin cells collectively, hyaluronic acid is a humectant.

That’s a flowery method of claiming “moisture magnet”. This acid attracts and binds moisture from the setting into the pores and skin, pumping up its hydration ranges.

Different elements do that. Glycerin and Urea spring to thoughts instantly. However Hyaluronic Acid goes the additional mile: it could bind as much as 1000 instances its weight in water! That’s a waterfall of moisture!

When pores and skin has all of the moisture it wants, it his softer to the contact; it’s all plumped up, which in flip makes wrinkles look smaller; and has that lovely dewy glow that makes it seem like it’s lit from inside.

Hydration is Hyaluronic Acid’s primary job, however this superhero has different tips up its sleeve. It additionally:

Associated: What Are Humectants And Why Do You Want Them In Your Skincare Routine?

Struggling to place collectively a skincare routine that minimises wrinkles, prevents untimely getting older, and offers your complexion a youthful glow? Obtain your FREE “Greatest Anti-Growing old Skincare Routine” to get began (it options product suggestions + proper utility order):

What Else Is In The Components?

NOTE: The colors point out the effectiveness of an ingredient. It’s ILLEGAL to place poisonous and dangerous elements in skincare merchandise.

  • Inexperienced: It’s efficient, confirmed to work, and helps the product do the very best job on your pores and skin.
  • Yellow: There’s not a lot proof it really works (no less than, but).
  • Pink: What is that this doing right here?!
  • Aqua: One of the best of this (and most) skincare merchandise.
  • Sodium Hydroxide: It’s used to regulate the pH, in order that glycolic acid can work its greatest.
  • Panthenol: Like Hyaluronic acid, it attracts water from the setting into your pores and skin, serving to to maintain it hydrated, softer, and smoother for longer.
  • Sodium PCA: A robust hydrator, it attracts moisture from the setting and reinforces the pores and skin’s protecting barrier to make pores and skin softer, smoother, and brighter. It additionally helps heal dry pores and skin.
  • Propylene Glycol: One other humectant that pulls moisture into your pores and skin to maintain it hydrated.
  • Butylene Glycol: Yep, yet another humectant to draw further moisture into your pores and skin. All this further moisturise counteracts the drying results of exfoliation and makes your pores and skin softer and suppler.
  • Hydroxyethylcellulose: This child has NO influence on pores and skin itself. It’s merely used to enhance the feel of the product (and this has a lovely texture).
  • Polyquaternium-10: Used largely in haircare merchandise to tame flyaways, it’s right here to boost the feel of the components.
  • Phenoxyethanol: A preservative that retains micro organism from rising into your make-up, spoiling it, and providing you with an an infection.
  • Sodium Benzoate: One other preservative that retains the product protected from micro organism, so you need to use it for longer.


The feel of this exfoliant seems like water, however it’s thicker and feels a bit slimy to the contact. It absorbs instantly into your pores and skin, with out leaving a greasy residue behind.


Like all Paula’s Selection merchandise, it’s fragrance-free. Perfume is without doubt one of the most irritating elements in skincare, particularly for delicate pores and skin. No less than, you don’t have to fret about that right here.

How To Use It

Two or three nights every week, proper after cleaning. Paula’s Selection says a few times a day, however NO ONE wants that a lot exfoliation. It could irritate your pores and skin and dry it out.

Don’t use retinol on the identical nights.

Efficiency & Private Opinion

Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant leaves a shiny residue on the pores and skin. I exploit it earlier than going to mattress (exfoliation makes pores and skin extra prone to solar injury), so I don’t thoughts that a lot.

It tingles a bit once you first apply it, however it’s not irritating or painful within the slightest. I discover the soothing botanical extracts + hyaluronic acid minimise any irritation Glycolic acid might provide you with – until you might have delicate pores and skin.

The exfoliant does a superb job at smoothing out imperfections. With common use, it fades away tough patches of pores and skin and darkish spots (even these left behind by pimples) and offers my pores and skin a radiant glow.

As an alternative, it doesn’t actually assist with blackheads (you want salicylic acid for that). I’m additionally on the fence re wrinkles. Glycolic acid can smoothen out their look, however 8% is simply too low to eliminate them long-term.

Associated: The Greatest Exfoliants With Salicylic Acid

Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant

Who Is This For?

  • Dry pores and skin
  • Regular pores and skin
  • Darkish spots and hyperpigmentation

Who Is This NOT For?

Should you’re coping with pimples/blackheads, you’re higher off with salicylic acid.

Associated: The Greatest Exfoliants With Salicylic Acid


The exfoliant is available in a white bottle with a pump dispenser. I’ve the journey model, which is available in a small white tube with a small opening you’ll be able to simply carry with you in all places.

Does Paula’s Selection Pores and skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant Reside Up To Its Claims?

This ultra-light gel exfoliant gently dissolves built-up layers of lifeless pores and skin to disclose a smoother, brighter, extra radiant complexion. True.
Formulated with 8% AHA (glycolic acid), it helps to fade indicators of solar injury and corrects uneven pores and skin tone whereas enhancing the looks of wrinkles. True.

Value & Availability

$29.50/£28.00 at Dermstore, Really feel Distinctive, Paula’s Selection, and SpaceNK

Do You Want It?

Should you’re in search of a glycolic acid exfoliant, that is laborious to beat.

Dupes & Alternate options

Aqua, Glycolic Acid (Alpha Hydroxy Acid, exfoliant), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (chamomile/skin-soothing), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (hydration), Camellia Oleifera (Inexperienced Tea) Leaf Extract (antioxidant/skin-soothing), etanorulayH muidoS (pores and skin replenishing), Panthenol (hydration), Sodium PCA (pores and skin replenishing), Propylene Glycol (hydration), Butylene Glycol (hydration), Hydroxyethylcellulose (texture-enhancing), Polyquaternium-10 (texture-enhancing), Phenoxyethanol (preservative), Sodium Benzoate (preservative).

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