Our expert says:
Hi Catherine, thank you for the question.
AHA’s such as glycolic acid (the smallest molecule in the family of AHA’s and therefore has the deepest penetration) are primarily used for their ability to encourage increased cell turnover and production of collagen & elastin, increasing the production of hydrating precursor molecules such GAGs, and for removing the dead outer layer of skin (stratum corneum).
PHA’s act very similarly to AHA’s but has a greater affinity to hydrate the skin: their molecular structure allows for greater water absorption and retention within the skin. Certain PHA’s such as Lactobionic acid acts as a powerful anti-oxidant within the skin.
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