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Not sure the words “acid” and “beauty routine” belong in the same sentence? Think again! Acids used in skincare products can provide dramatic results.

The Kit’s beauty director, Rani Sheen, breaks down different types of acids and how they can benefit our skin.

SALICYLIC ACID – BEST FOR BREAKOUTS
This BHA or beta hydroxy acid is most commonly used to treat breakouts, especially light to moderate acne and in teenagers. It works by exfoliating skin cells that can get trapped in pores and neutralizing bacteria.

PRODUCTS TO TRY:
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Philosophy Clear Days Ahead Trial Kit
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This is a full system with oil-free salicylic acid acne treatment cleanser, a moisturizer, overnight treatment pads and a spot treatment.  It’s two steps in the morning and two at night and promises to reduce acne in three days. It also helps prevent future breakouts.
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Soap & Glory Fab Pore Triple Action Purifying T-Zone Cloths
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: These handy cloths use slow-release salicylic acid to cleanse, exfoliate and help address breakouts. Great to keep in your bag and use pre-workout or when you’re travelling and don’t have your whole regimen with you.

GLYCOLIC & LACTIC ACID – BEST FOR BRIGHTENING
Both of these acids are AHAs or alpha hydroxy acids and they’re great for brightening. Lactic acid is very gentle and glycolic acid is super effective.

PRODUCTS TO TRY:
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Pixi Glow Tonic
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: Glow Tonic is a U.K. skincare classic. It’s a glycolic acid toner that refines and brightens. It also contains a lot of aloe juice to soothe and calm any potential irritation. 
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Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Glow Moisturizer
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This is a cocktail of exfoliants in a moisturizer format. Glycolic and lactic acids—plus pineapple, pumpkin, and papaya enzymes—reduce the appearance of dullness and uneven skin texture. Use as a night cream and always use SPF during the day.
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Neostrata Glycolic Acid Body Lotion
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This body lotion has 10% glycolic acid and minimizes rough dead skin cells, helps with ingrown hairs and softens skin overall. Tested for use on even sensitive skin. Try it for breakouts or bumps on the chest, back and upper arms.

AZELAIC & MANDELIC ACIDS – BEST FOR SMOOTHING 
These are also AHAs or alpha hydroxy acids that are a little lesser known and ideal for smoothing.

PRODUCTS TO TRY:
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Renee Rouleau Triple Berry Smoothing Peel
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This hero peel made by a star U.S. facialist contains mandelic acid as well as salicylic, lactic, tartaric and malic acids to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, refine visible pores and fade discolouration and acne scars. It’s also packed with fruit enzymes to soothe inflammation and brighten. Try it the night before a big event, or you can also use it as a spot treatment on keratosis pilaris bumps on your upper arms, or to fade sunspots on the backs of your hands.
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Deciem The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: Found in grains, azelaic acid is produced naturally by yeast that lives on normal skin. It brightens skin and improves the evenness of skin texture and reduces the look of blemishes. It also acts as an effective antioxidant. This formula offers a high 10% concentration of azelaic acid in a light cream-gel.

HYALURONIC ACID – BEST FOR HYDRATING 
Not all acids are exfoliants! The term “acid” can be confusing—hyaluronic acid is actually a very gentle and effecting HYDRATOR that draws water into the skin and helps it hold onto moisture.

PRODUCTS TO TRY:
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Strivectin Advanced Acids Hyaluronic Dual-Response Serum
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This dual-chamber serum contains six forms of hyaluronic acid to visibly plump and hydrate skin. The other chamber combines NIA-114 and ceramides to lock in moisture and prevent water loss. At the push of a button, the dual-phase formula fuses into the ultimate moisture treatment.
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Tata Harper Crème Riche
  • WHY WE LOVE IT: This all-natural, supremely rich and buttery cream contains a complex of sugar acids to hydrate and plump dry, aging skin. Hyaluronic and essential fatty acids help lock in moisture for a soft, supple appearance.