As a follow-up to one of my first posts, I decided to bump up a level with my lactic acid use and test out the 10% version.
In general, the product is not too significantly different. It comes in the same kind of container (glass bottle), same dispersing mechanism (glass dropper), the color of the liquid is pretty similar. The cost is even similar at $6.79 compared to $6.50 for the 5%. All all, if you’re wanting to make a change and move up a step with your skincare routine while still being gentle, this is not a bad option.
There are no specific claims that The Ordinary makes for this product on their website, interestingly enough.
All it really states is that it is an exfoliant, which is true. The rest of what they write is something that I would expect to be lost on someone who isn’t entirely sure of where to start, which makes me think this is intentionally a product for more experienced folks. It piques my interest they don’t really make any specific claims on their website; I can’t tell if that’s a deliberate marketing move to bolster their “scientific approach,” (which is a specific marketing tool in and of itself, much like the greenwashing of “natural” or “organic” products) or if it’s that they don’t want to make any claims they can’t deliver on. However, the Sephora website gives a little more insight into what it intends to accomplish:
So now that we have an idea of what this intends to do for your skin, I’ll share my experience and whether or not this actually managed to accomplish what it claims (at least, according to a mix of both The Ordinary and Sephora):
- Chemical Exfoliant (or uneven texture): ✔️ Yes. I definitely do not have issues with my skin looking or feeling as flake-y when using this product. Within about an hour of initial application, skin feels very soft. Definitely true to my experience.
- Uneven skin tone: ❌ For me, my skin tone has a lot of red/pink overtones and is reactive easily. Given the higher percentage of lactic acid, I would actually say this probably increased redness for me. That isn’t necessarily a knock on the product because this is an individual reactiveness, but this was my experience with it so I can’t give it a positive mark.
- Fine lines and wrinkles: ❔ I don’t have wrinkles (yet) and I don’t have fine lines that are strong enough to determine the effectiveness of this, so I’m going to go with inconclusive for now.
- Dullness: ✔️ Yes. I would definitely say this helped to brighten my skin and make it look slightly more radiant.
Compared to Sunday Riley Good Genes and The Ordinary Lactic Acid 5% + 2% HA
- More gentle, less reactive than The Ordinary at both the 5% and 10%. (Though, not significantly enough to warrant the cost difference at the 5%.)
- On par with the 10% for brightening/radiance factors.
- Slightly less effective at exfoliation than the 10%.
- Ultimately, still not worth the cost differential of almost $100.
The Ordinary Lactic Acid 5% + 2% HA is…
- More gentle than the 10%, but very slightly less so than the Sunday Riley Good Genes.
- Less brightening/radiant than both Sunday Riley Good Genes and the 10%.
- Comparable to the Sunday Riley Good Genes for exfoliation, but slightly less than the 10%.
- Better as a first step at trying lactic acid/chemical exfoliation than 10% and Sunday Riley Good Genes.
Some other things worth mentioning about this is in the initial post, I remarked on how The Ordinary 5% had a particular smell. In October 2017, the formula was changed slightly for the 10% and the 5% where they changed the grade of lactic acid that had no odor and also removed the carrageenan from the formula (the carrageenan did not impact the smell, but the viscosity.) I suspect I had one of the newer ones because the smell on it is non-existent.
Now that I’ve made a comparison between the bigger players on the market, there are a few things I’d like to do once I finish off this and the exfoliant back-ups I have. Some things I intend to do next once they’re polished off:
Ren Ready Steady Glow Daily AHA Tonic: It’s in an 8.5 oz bottle with a pump (!!) and is a lactic acid exfoliant. This one should take me a while to burn through before I give a review, so it probably wouldn’t be likely until late(r) 2018 for a review on this.
Mandelic acid: this is supposedly an even gentler exfoliant, so I think this will be my next step after the REN.
I’m also sure between then and now, there will be plenty of new things added to the market for me to give a shot. But for now, this is what I expect to be doing and working on in the next several months.
Yours ’til Niagara Falls,