Ingredient Highlight: Mandelic Acid

Richard Block

Oct 5, 2021 · 2 min read

Because a youthful appearance is so sought after by consumers, an effective anti-aging formula is a holy grail for Cosmetic Creators. Many of today’s Beauty Brands are working with a new ingredient that promises to soften the effects of time on the human face: mandelic acid.

The Internet hosts lots of claims that this anti-aging go-to is a great way to freshen up the skin of the face. It’s touted as a gentle exfoliant, and you can find it in peels, cleansers, serums, and tonics. Here’s an overview; maybe mandelic acid is the thing you’re looking for for your next skincare innovation.

Mandelic acid was discovered in 1831 by a German pharmacist working with an extract of bitter almonds. (“Mandel” means “almond” in German.) Since the 1930s, it has been used as an antiseptic, and some researchers say it should be considered again for that use.

More recently, it has found a use in skin care. At least one study has suggested that it may reduce wrinkles, even skin tone, improve acne, and firm up skin’s appearance via gentle exfoliation.

Stylist Magazine interviewed several researchers, who touted the benefits of mandelic acid as a gentler alternative to, say, glycolic and lactic acid. This makes it suitable for a wider variety of skin types and sensitivities, the article says.

The effects can generally be seen in a few days, according to the Stylist article, and users should be careful to apply sunscreen, as it can increase sensitivity to damaging ultraviolet sunlight. It can be found in products by HoliFrog, Kosas, Naturopathica,

Curious about mandelic acid’s promising properties? Interested in using it in your next blockbuster beauty product? You can find and collaborate with formulation professionals, and even formulate a product from start to finish, right here on Goldn. If you haven’t yet, sign up and start creating cosmetics, simply!

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Richard Block

Richard Block is an editorial jack-of-all-trades at Goldn

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