Peels -- even lactic acid peels -- can sometimes be harsh on skin, particularly inflamed or acne-ridden skin. If you need something milder for your skin, lactic acid creams and lotions might be a good alternative for you, particularly if you are looking to moisturize and exfoliate rather than remove acne scars.
Lactic acid creams are generally thick and heavy -- and perfect for very dry skin. They are generally used on the face, working to hydrate the skin while removing the dead cells. Since lactic acid can also stimulate collagen production, these creams may also help reduce finer wrinkles, thus making your face look younger. There are a wide variety of creams containing lactic acid to choose from.
Lactic acid lotions, meanwhile, are thinner and lighter in consistency, and they're more likely than the creams to be used all over the body. Any skin that needs more moisture may benefit from lactic acid lotions, but people with rough, dry or scaly skin -- like eczema sufferers -- might find that a lactic acid lotion works especially well for them [source: Lactic Skin Care].
Again, be sure to protect yourself from the sun when using a lactic acid cream or lotion, as sun sensitivity is a common side effect of any lactic acid treatment.
To learn more about lactic acid, check out the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- A Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. "Cost of Chemical Peels." Aug. 4, 2009. (accessed 8/5/2009) http://www.aboardcertifiedplasticsurgeonresource.com/chemical_peel/cost.html
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- Cure Research. "Symptom: Skin texture changes." (Accessed 7/22/09) http://www.cureresearch.com/sym/skin_texture_changes.htm
- Drugs.com. "Lactic Acid." (Accessed 7/22/09)http://www.drugs.com/cdi/lactic-acid-lotion.html
- Gisquet, Vanessa. "Most Expensive Cosmetics." Forbes. (Accessed 7/22/09) http://www.forbes.com/2005/04/20/cx_vg_0420feat.html
- Lactic Skin Care. "Lactic Acid Resource Center." (Accessed 7/22/09) http://www.lacticskincare.org/
- Skincare News. "Lactic Acid." 3/25/08. (Accessed 7/22/09)http://www.skincare-news.com/a-2256-Lactic_Acid.aspx
- WebMD. "Cosmetic Procedures: Chemical Peel Treatments." March 1, 2007. (accessed 8/5/09)http://www.webmd.com/skin-beauty/guide/cosmetic-procedures-chemical-peel-treatments
- Lennon, Christine. "Do-It-Yourself Facial Peels." New York Times. Sept. 29, 2005. (accessed 8/5/2009) http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/29/fashion/thursdaystyles/29peels.html?scp=2&sq=chemical+peel&st=nyt