Use of Nonprescription Alpha-Hydroxy Acids

W. Steven Pray, Ph.D., R.Ph.


US Pharmacist. 2002;27(5) 

In This Article

Purported Benefits of Use

Word of mouth--spurred by articles in women's magazines and extensive marketing campaigns--alleged that AHAs could strip off the upper layer of skin, exposing new, fresh skin beneath, and smooth fine lines and wrinkles. AHAs are also marketed as agents that improve skin surface texture and tone, unblock and cleanse pores, improve oily skin or acne, and provide an overall improvement in skin condition.[8] There is little evidence, however, that AHAs can actually accomplish most of these actions; the majority of the support stems from testimonial evidence only.[9]


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