Shannon Esau, CEO and national educator at RA Skin Cosmeceuticals
Mandelic acid was reportedly discovered in 1831 by a German pharmacist, which explains how it got its name –– the German word for almond, “mandel”. The acid, which is derived from almonds, has a long history in skin care, used for its rejuvenation, healing, brightening, and antiseptic benefits, among others.
It can be used in the treatment room and as part of a corrective home care system to treat irregular pigmentation, rosacea, acne, aging and compromised barrier. With that in mind, let’s explore how this acid works and why it should be a prominent part of your practice in 2021.
The Benefits of Mandelic
Mandelic acid performs similar to an AHA loosening the glue-like substance around the cells to allow for cell turnover. This characteristic makes it highly useful in improving texture, increasing oxygen and rejuvenating the skin. It is considered a gentle exfoliator as it does not cause the skin to visibly exfoliate or become dry, but that doesn’t make it any less powerful.
In fact, mandelic accelerates cellular turnover, provides antibacterial support, reduces inflammation and has melanin inhibiting properties. When mandelic is paired with L-arginine (amino acid), it becomes a powerful combination, adding firming and skin tightening properties and increases cell wound healing abilities.
Using Mandelic in the Treatment Room
Formulation is key to everything and Mandelic Acid is no different. Both Phytic and Pyruvic acids enhance mandelic by increasing ATP energy and provide powerful antioxidants. This combination is an important part of a peel preparation step providing cellular support which is vital in skin rejuvenation.
In the treatment room, mandelic acid can be used in a variety of protocols, and with other acids and modalities to produce specific results. It is effective in treating the aforementioned issues –– acne, rosacea, compromised barrier, and aging.
One treatment that is particularly effective for strengthening the skin, stimulating collagen production, and improving the appearance of lines and wrinkles is the Mandelic Renew Peel. Considered a progressive to progressive plus peel, this treatment combines the Mandelic Arginine Peel with the Hibiscus Peel to firm and tone, increase glycosaminoglycans, balance lipids, and lighten and brighten the skin. Both solutions are also self neutralizing, which means they stop on their own. This peel has benefits for rosacea and acne skins as well.
A few pro tips for getting the most out of this treatment include:
- Perform a two-step cleanse using cleansers that contain acid. This is important for initiating the preparation process and reducing cellular buildup.
- Prior to the peel, apply a cell conditioner to reduce lipids and calm inflammation stimulated during a chemical peel.
- Following the cell conditioner, using a melanin suppressant solution can help reduce the melanogenesis that may flare up during a peel. It will calm the melanocyte activity and reduce the risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH).
Consider how you might incorporate this powerhouse ingredient into your practice this year to help your clients achieve healthy, youthful-looking skin.
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