Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid
Availability: In stock
Exfoliate deep within the pore and fight stubborn blemishes and blackheads with this clear liquid with 2% salicylic acid (BHA). Also contains soothing anti-irritants.
- Liquid consistency (similar to toner) works beautifully on oily or combination skin
- Exfoliates the skin's surface and inside the pore lining where clogged pores occur
- 100% fragrance and colorant-free
Please note: When using a BHA product make sure you use a sunscreen during the day
Please note: Those allergic to aspirin (acetylsalicylate) should not use products containing salicylic acid ( BHA).
Review by Catherine
I have mixed feelings about this product. I wonder if it's suited for mature skin that used to be oily and acne-prone yet is now drier. However it doesn't cause any irritation or allergy, just tingles a bit after application, but it doesn't seem to have any effects on my blackheads and whiteheads (the former are very encrusted). I apply it in the evenings mostly on the chin, nose and forehead; it has reduced the size of the pores but doesn't seem to eliminate blackheads especially, they're just smaller, which is already an improvement. I think I made a mistake when I chose it (in trial size) and maybe I ought to have chosen the 2% BHA lotion for dey skin instead. I'll finish the small bottle and think about what I'll do next. All in all, it's a good product which I recommend to younger and very oily skin. Maybe it's not adapted for very mature skin, though it is by no means bad or irritating. One other thing to know is that some moisturizers containing oils such as rosehip and/or other face oils, as well as some foundations (including Best Face Forward) immediately curdle if applied just after it. This is why I now only apply it in the evenings.
Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We're happy that you are seeing some results and hope that you start seeing improvements with your other concerns soon. This BHA product is suitable for mature skin, however there may be other factors that can have an effect on seeing more improvements, such as how long you've been using the exfoliant and how many times a day and what other products you are using etc... Please get in touch with our customer care team for further assistance with a product recommendation. (Posted on 16/03/2017)
Review by Bradley
- Have Combo to Oily skin and this has completely changed my skin. I had being using the dermalogica gentle cream exfoliant which had AHA and a tiny amount of BHA and I was still breaking out all the time. Decided to try this and even after a few days my spots and minor acne started to clear up. My skin is glowing and the texture is so much better. Only negative is that it can makes your face feel tight but yet when you touch it, its really smooth, so make sure you apply serum and your SPF/Retinol moisture afterwards. (Posted on 13/01/2017)
Review by Cassandra
My skin suffered from large pores and blackheads and it used to look quite saggy. When I tried using this product, it felt a bit irritating at first, but once my skin gets used to it, it works perfectly. I have never thought there was actually a skin-care product in this world that would work! I also use the whole skin-care routine from PC for over a year (cleanser, toner, serum, BHA exfoliant, moisturiser and spf) and I am completely satisfied with it. They are, of course, more pricey than other mainstream products but I reckon they are totally worth the investment.
On another note, my mum 'stole' a bit of this product to use over the summer and she is also in love with it. She has now turned all of her skin-care routines to PC as I have. She is 47, having a lot of acne and wrinkles but now her skin looks quite smooth.
I have to thank PC for creating wonderful products that have helped me to be so much more comfortable and confident with my skin. My skin has never looked better! (Posted on 08/01/2017)
Review by Tuire
- I have used this product for a month twice a day now. It has done absolutely nothing to my pores or how much I get blackheads or pimples. However it does help clearing out the pimples and red spots. My skin has never been grey or dull despite it being surface dry but very oily. This product has still brightened my skin even more. I'm not a big fan of the sticky feeling it leaves on the skin, like it never gets really absorbed, but with serum/moisturizer afterwards it's ok. Sadly it didn't help me keeping my face spotless, but atleast it helps to clear the appearing spots a lot faster than without. (Posted on 19/09/2016)
Review by Matthew
- I'm a 26 year old male with oily skin that is prone to break outs. I've never used Paula's choice or a liquid exfoliant before but oh my goodness what a difference it has made to me. After cleansing and toning I put this on and from the first application within an hour any bumps I had as my skin texture smoothed right down and my pores closed up like I have never experienced before. I have been using this product for a few weeks and my skin is much improved and over time my blemishes and acne scarring has soften. I use it probably once a day or sometimes twice if I think my skin can handle it because it is naturally a little drying. Great product! I will have to buy the full size soon! (Posted on 18/09/2016)
Review by Debbie
- I have acne prone skin and have never used a stay on exfoliants before; I tend to use face mask but not anymore. I have seen an improvement with my skin, I have been using this product twice a day with no irritation or flakiness I also see a nice healthy glow to my skin when I use this product. I am surprised this has not finish the same time as my toner, which I got through first. I have been using this product for 10 weeks and still have more left, a little goes a long way. I have not had any breakouts since using this product that could be down to me using Paula's other products combine with this, it's a nice feeling when you see a product that actually works for your skin. I will never go without it and I have confidence in her products. (Posted on 02/09/2016)
Review by Marija
Having read all the amazing reviews I hoped it would help with my blackheads that I have since middle school. I asked for 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant for Christmas and been using it ever since. Unfortunately, I haven't noticed a difference in my skin at all, maybe it did something but the difference is too small to notice. The same amount of blackheads stayed exactly where it was, and I noticed the liquid made my skin very greasy. My skin is not in a very bad condition, maybe that's why I haven't noticed a big difference but it's a shame it didn't work on the blackheads.
Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We are sorry to hear that this product has not worked for you, but are happy to see that our customer care team has reached out to you to help you find an alternative product.
(Posted on 03/08/2016)
Review by Andrew
I have been using this product for just over a week and I am amazed.
Initially I was a bit over-zealous and there was drying and tightness but having reduced amount I use on the cotton pad and stopped rubbing too hard - really tempting to do when you by an exfoliant - my skin is now so smooth and soft I can stop touching my cheek.
If you've seen the PC youtube live chat with Bryan and Nathan, they DO say there is an initial period of breaking out, which was indeed the case with me. Their explanation for this is that bacteria may start to feed on the dead skin clogging your pores as it reaches the surface of the skin. Looking forward to trying more from this brand. (Posted on 04/07/2016)
Review by Thomas
Had blackheads for as long as I can remember on my nose. All the products I've ever used except this one made my skin worse or flare up my past seborrheic dermatitis (Which I have cured, to all the dermatologists who said it was for life). Now a lot of complaints say that it makes their skin worse. Well from the start it will make your black heads more prominent as the acid loosens the sebum, they will start to come out faster which can lead more surface area to oxidise making them more noticeable also the acid can oxidise the oil as well, I think.
So I use a nose strip prior to starting my application to help limit this. Then I apply with a finger just on my nose like 2-3 times a day for first few days. After application, ill rinse with warm water a few hours later. This does wonders for getting rid of the blackheads quickly. Then I step it back to once in the morning and once in the evening.
I don't wash my face before hand. No need (for me at least). If I wash and put products on it increases my chances of getting irritation.
I only do this for my nose. Rest of your skin is more sensitive. This is due to the nose being the most oily. I tried this on my forehead with multiple applications and just peeled. It is strong stuff.
All the best
Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We are happy to hear that you found a way to use this product and make it work for you. We hope you enjoy the results. (Posted on 07/06/2016)
Review by Louise
Having had clogged pores and blackheads for as long as I can remember, I had such high hopes for this product. Regrettably, it did not live up to my expectations. I had already tried the BHA lotion which didn't do anything for my skin either, and based on customer reviews I thought the liquid version might instead do the trick.
Unfortunately, my pores are still clogged and the skin around my nose (where the clogging is at its worst) is dry and flaky.
I tried the product on my keratosis pilaris on my upper arms as well, and it didn't have any effect.
thanks for letting us know of your experience - we're sorry to hear this didn't work for you! We encourage you to contact our customer service department, who might be able to provide you with an exchange or refund. (Posted on 22/05/2016)
Review by Athina
I usually have oily-combination skin with blackheads.
It has helped my skin and it did refine the overall look of the pores. For a while due to birth control I experienced some hormonal acne and kept using it, so far so good. I don't know if it is the product that helped or I will experience the acne again.
It definitely helped with my pores and skin glow (less redness) after using it consistently for 2 months! (Posted on 06/05/2016)
Review by Miya
- Blackheads reduced a great deal since i started using this !! Lovely product and consistency, keep using it for results ! Very happy :)) (Posted on 20/02/2016)
Review by Rose
- I have used the 2% BHA liquid a couple of months now. I still have some learning about the frequency to use this. I have used this every three nights but I still experience a little flakiness from time to time. It isn't irritation though, just some dryness. Oiliness has reduced, blackheads are less visible so I'm quite happy. There are still white heads I wished I could get rid of... Too bad the 9% BHA isn't available in Europe. (Posted on 08/02/2016)
Review by Gemma
I've always had 'problem skin' growing up but at 26, I randomly started getting adult acne. I had major clogged up pores which looked like huge bumps on my chin, jawline and neck, as well as huge painful and red cystic type acne spots. I have scars from having acne as a teenager and couldn't BELIEVE I was going through acne again as an adult woman. After plenty of research and tears, I stumbled upon a recommendation for the Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid. I have NEVER used a BHA exfoliant before and was a bit weary about trying it but I was desperate and decided to order a sample size. I cleansed my face with my usual cleanser at night, then I used some of the BHA liquid on a cotton pad and wiped it over my face, concentrating on the problem areas - followed by my usual moisturiser. I fell in love with this product and ordered the full size and I cannot rate it enough! This product has literally changed my life. . . My skin has cleared up dramatically, I have NO bumps or clogged pores and most important of all - I HAVE HAD NO NEW BREAKOUTS AT ALL since I started using this product. My skin is smooth, soft, plump and youthful looking and breakout free. I can also see a difference in my existing acne scars, they're much less noticeable. CHANGED MY LIFE!!!! Thanks Paula's Choice - although I wish the shipping to the UK was quicker xx
Customer Service: Thank you for your review. We are delighted to hear of your experience and hope you enjoy all our products. (Posted on 11/01/2016)
Review by Andrei
I felt overwhelmed by all the positive reviews here and decided that I need this product very much for my acne-prone skin. When it finally arrived, started using it once every other day (as when i tried to use it once every day - my skin was super red, warm and irritated - no irritation promised?). As of now, my skin looks so awful that I do not want to leave my flat and just sit inside. I broke out even on my cheeks where i never have any problems.
The first and negative experience with Paula´s Choice products :/
Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We are sorry to hear of your discomfort and experience. Although this is not a common response, we do understand that each customer is uniquely different in how they will respond to products or ingredients. We always recommend to start out slow with an exfoliant, a couple nights a week first in the beginning and to monitor how your skin reacts. However, we are sure we will be able to assist you further with addressing your skin conditions, please contact our customer care department. (Posted on 29/12/2015)
Review by Catarina
I have some blackheads in my nose and cheeks, so I thought that this product would help to unclog and shrink my pores... NOOO!!
After using this product for several months my skin has became flaky and my pores are now larger than before and now blackheads are way more visible!!!!
I don't recommend this product at all.
Customer Care: Hello, and thank you for sharing your experience with us - we're sorry to hear this didn't work as expected for you! Please contact a member of our Customer Care team, who can assist you with a possible alternative. (Posted on 24/12/2015)
Review by Charlotte
Got given this as a sample and first day of using it, someone asked what makes my skin glow?
Ive got normal to dry, thin skin with tiny pores and my skin really likes this.
I do the 4 steps: cleanse, tone, BHA, serum, spf moisturiser.
My skin looks verry happy!
Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We're happy to hear that this product is working great for your skin. Keeping a consistent routine is key. (Posted on 30/11/2015)
Review by Rosa
I've used products with salicylic acid before as a preventative method to battle acne but this is the one that finally did the trick for me and keeps my skin clear for the most part. I'm guessing it might have something to do with having the right pH for the acid to work as an exfoliant. In any case, this truly works and I will keep buying it forever if I can.
I've also tried most of the other BHA products that Paula's Choice offers, but while they all seem equally effective, this is my favorite out of them all because it's a liquid. It's so light, I don't feel like I'm adding even more product on my skin. Just a swipe and I get everything I need and that's all. After applying this, my skin doesn't feel greasy or tacky whatsoever. I love it so much! (Posted on 07/11/2015)
Review by Karla
- so far i really do love this product ive been using it for about 3 weeks, it literally brought all the gunk in my skin to the surface, i dont think ill ever be without this product (Posted on 24/10/2015)
Review by SONIA
- I am African, so for those wondering if it works on our skin type, Yes it does. I have skin discolouration and I have been using this product for a month now and I can see great improvement. Can't wait to see what my face looks like by the end of the year. :) (Posted on 17/09/2015)
Review by francesca
They say you will see overnight results with this product. Well this was actually very true. The morning after your skin will appear cleaner, the pores smaller. After one week, the effects are amazing: I have no more visible / dilated pores, no black heads (!!!) and overall the skin feels "tighter".
I am so happy to have finally bought this product and I think I'll never want to be without it. (Posted on 07/09/2015)
Review by Happy
- this is a product that I do not ever give up! helps to keep the pores open and clean and brighten dull skin. awesome product! (Posted on 03/09/2015)
Review by Vanessa
This does everything I'd hoped and more. I'm almost finished my first bottle, so I'd say I've tested it for long enough to understand how it works on my skin.
My blackheads have been reduced considerably, so that they are barely visible. Likewise, my pores appear reduced. Surprisingly, this also reduces the healing time for spots, and has made my skin considerably less oily so that makeup no longer melts off my t-zone.
One drawback is that this can dry out my skin, leaving it tight and shiny looking. However, I notice that it only happens if I use a large volume of the product on my face, so that my face is noticeably wet looking upon application. If I only use a small amount on a cotton pad, I get all of the above results without unnecessary dryness. However, I will trial the gel version next.
(Posted on 18/08/2015)
Review by Vivien
- As an older woman with very oily skin this product has changed my life!! My skin has never looked so good, after the first week of use I did have a small break out, I stuck with it and I now get compliments on my skin. The dreaded large pores have reduced I use a primer and my skin looks fantastic, the shine has gone and each morning its great just to touch my skin, no more oiliness, I use it with the moisturiser for oily skin, I received great advice via e mail to get me started. Thank you Paulas Choice wish I had met you sooner (Posted on 15/07/2015)
Review by Benjamin
- I've only ever felt the need to write a review on something if I felt it was a must. I have been using paulas choice for near on 6 months now and there products have completely changed my skin and my life. This liquid is a miracle worker and teamed with the retinol serum and treatment it has transformed my skin. I am in my late 20's and gave suffered from breakouts and blemishes my whole life. My diet is fantastic and I have spent thousands on products in the past and nothing has worked like paulas products. You now have a life long customer, THANK YOU. (Posted on 14/07/2015)
Review by zura
I have a combination skin with main concerns being breakouts, clogged pores and blackheads. I made the mistake of using this together with the Resist cream which also has BHA in it and after a month of this joint treatment my face became a lot smoother: my clogged pores flattened so the tiny bumps lining my face disappeared, my complexion brightened and my blackheads significantly reduced. Why this was a mistake is that too much of BHA dried my skin immensely and kept causing my skin to flake and breakout despite it looking smooth and bright.
Then I switched from the Resist cream to a simple moisturiser and continued using this BHA liquid morning and night, applied using a cotton ball, and the flakiness and the breakouts went away in 2-3 days. So this has become an important product in my skincare, it fixes big pores, blackheads and clogged pores if followed with a moisturiser.
It hasn't however removed the blackheads on my nose. (Posted on 30/06/2015)
Review by valia
Never reviewed anything before. I started using this 15 days ago. I can't shut up about it. I seriously need to buy so much of that thing, so i can fill a pool, so i can swim in it. I also need money to buy the thing. And a pool.
P.S. : Really high shipping costs.... DON'T CARE. TOTALLY WORTH IT. I love you all. (Posted on 28/06/2015)
Review by Dawny
- I did ALOT of research surrounding BHA and AHA products before getting this, I guess I was a little scared it would burn my skin! I have used shop bought exfoliants - scrubs - all my life, and had smooth skin. However it never occured to me that this could damage the top layers! A BHA exfoliant seemed a good choice for my combination, breakout prone skin. After trying samples of the 1% gel, and finding it balled up/peeled off my skin, I was hopeful this liquid version, though stronger, would suit me. Luckily, it seemed to sink in nicely to my skin, not irritate it or dry it out. Or burn! I used up my samples but along with the other Paula's Choice samples I was trying at the time, I had soft, smoother skin, which seemed less oily round my t-zone. I have a full unopened bottle of this in my cupboard, waiting for my other PC Bha product I'm trying, to be used up. This is why I can't give it 5*, simply because I have not used it long enough to see real results. I am hopeful that daily use at some future date, will help further reduce the large pores on my nose and clear out the oil, for good! I am very pleased with this product so far though, thanks Paula! (Posted on 29/05/2015)
Review by Georgia
It works. Putting it simply. It seems to 'regenerate' and invigorate my skin. I having been trialling this for the odd spot and it always speeds up the healing process and takes the heat out of a nasty blemish. However, I have also been using t all over as a treatment every other night and the difference is really noticeable. Smoother skin with reduced redness and fewer clogged pores.
It irks me that so much gets absorbed into the cotton wool pad, so now I just use fingertips, it is ever so slightly viscous so it won't 'run away'.
Over a year ago I bought the lotion version for drier skin, but frankly I much prefer the liquid and though it may technically not be suitable for direr mature skin, I just use it less and make sure I am well nourished with the Resist Anti-Aging Retinol Serum followed by a good moisturiser.
And of course the big bonus is the absence of perfume which aggravates certain areas of my face.
(Posted on 11/05/2015)
Review by Daniel
The product really does what it says, I've noticed a very good improvement in skin condition. Despite this, I must say I don't like the liquid texture. It takes a long time to absorb and leaves my skin slightly greasy, even when trying to use a very tiny amount.
I had initially tried a sample of the gel formulation, which I very much liked and absorbed nicely. I imagined the liquid version would be even lighter, so I went for that one, but it wasn't so. Next time I'll be getting the gel version. (Posted on 09/04/2015)
Review by Kate
- I have been using the BHA liquid for a short period of time but have seen a difference already. Although I have dry flaky skin this liquid is amazing and doesn't dry my skin out as pretty much every other lotion out there. My skin is much clearer and so much smoother it is hard to believe. I definitely recommend to try this out as I will continue using this product. (Posted on 23/03/2015)
Review by Emma
Ever since I was a teenager I have struggled with blackheads and spot prone skin, and found nothing that would clear it up. Add to that the progesterone implant and a tendency to pick at my skin when stressed and I've been left with a bit of a mess. At 22, and after trying countless brands of skincare, I was pretty much losing hope that I would ever have clear skin.
However, after only a few weeks of using this exfoliator, I have had no new spots, my blackheads are noticeably minimised and I have nothing to pick at (at a very stressful time, finals!). My skin is still pretty marked and probably will be for a while yet, but for the first time I have a bit of hope that it will have time to improve without break outs!
Pros: no smell, no stinging (unlike other exfoliators), skin feels ridiculously soft
Cons: none so far! (Posted on 10/03/2015)
Review by Ad
I heard about this product on a lady's youtube beauty channel. I had heard about Paula's choice before I saw the video, but I was already quite fed up of trying new products.
I'm so glad I tried. I ordered several samples twice and liked the results. Now I am an addict to Paula's choice products. I do not use anything else on my face. I use this, clear cleanser, the resist toner, weekly AHA, resist moisturiser, the sunscreen and a few others and my skin has never been happier. (Posted on 20/02/2015)
Review by Helena
It is the first time I buy any of Paula's choice products and what I can say so far (after two weeks using it) is that this product does really work for me.
I apply this liquid every morning as a toner and in the evening before I go to bed. When I wash my face in the evening and dry it out with a cloth, I can see there is quite a lot of dead skin coming out, so it really does exfoliate well.
It has dried out my skin a bit, but as it was quite greasy lately, it is great for me.
My skin is a bit crazy, I had serious problems with acne when I was a teenager, followed by very good skin after a few years. During the last year I was getting quite a lot of spots and unfortunately they have been leaving red marks on my skin; well, I must say that after two weeks of using this liquid, I can see that my red marks are not as strong and they seem to be fading. Of course they are not gone yet, but I feel so much better about them in just two weeks that I really have faith in this getting rid of them all in a few months.
Also, when I was getting a new spot pretty much every day before, I have had only two in the past few days, so I can really see a change. I am very excited with this product. I will definitely buy it again and recommend it to anyone with the same kind of skin as myself. (Posted on 07/01/2015)
Review by Aleksandra
- I had problem with my skin since teenage ( blackheads, spots, large pores, spots) Nothing seems to works and I was feed up. I purchased this product and my skin is so much better. My pores are definitely smaller and I dont have so many blackheads. I can leave home without make up. It is good idea to sell samples of product.Thank you Paula x (Posted on 02/01/2015)
Review by Dennis
So this is the first skincare product for me, I am a student and always have wanted to buy something that helps my skin but i'ts hard to choose because there is alot of products out there. Guess i was lucky finding the right product for me on the first attempt it really makes my skin look SMOOTHER and takes away the dryness and redness away from my skin! I am truly satisfied with this product and reordering as soon as i'm out.
PAULA, YOU DA REAL MVP (Posted on 17/09/2014)
Review by Jim
- I've struggled with acne and blackheads for years now and wasted hundread of dollars on products hoping would solve this problem.. Ive used this item for a few months now but i've noticed that I get cystic bumps on my forehead whenever I use this after cleansing with paulas oil reducing cleanser. Its sad cause I really wanted this to work since acne affects my day to Day life and my confidence alot. I Will give PC one last try with a milder exfoliant, but I've wasted alot of money on PC products already with no huge difference (except the cleanser which has reduced oilyness a bit) (Posted on 16/09/2014)
Review by Julie
i have been using this for a year now and could not be happier with the result!
Thank you! I'm addicted to your products (Posted on 08/09/2014)
Review by Olivier
- Ok, this is it. After years (and lots of money) spent looking for the perfect exfoliant, I think I found it. This stuff really works the way it says it does, namely by smoothing your skin and treating/preventing blackheads and whiteheads. The fact that it's a liquid makes it really user-friendly, especially for guys like me with a two-day beard. (Posted on 07/09/2014)
Review by Mathias
- I have used this for months now and it works great and is also gentle enough to use for my dry skin. I tried some BHA products from other brands but none worked as good as this. Highly recommended! (Posted on 20/07/2014)
Review by Rashida
- i've only been using this product for a few days and its made a dramatic difference to my skin. i don't usually write reviews but this one had to be done as being an acne sufferer i've finally found something that truely works. If your skeptical about this product atleast order a sample! And if you have sensitive skin start with a lower percenage (1%). Guys this is definately the answer to clogged pores and acne its worth every single penny. (Posted on 01/07/2014)
Review by Sophie
- I have acne compromising of closed comedones all over my forehead and this was recommended by a few people. I've been using the product for about 2 months and my skin has not improved at all. I still have many comedones on my forehead and they have not reduced or gone away. On top of that it made me breakout with nodules which I never get. I use this every day and night but it just hasn't helped my skin and has made me break out more. I really wanted this product to work as I haven't found anything to help my comedonal acne. (Posted on 24/06/2014)
Review by Anqi
I have combination skin. I have used Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant 3 times in a week. My skin became very dry, flaky and red after using It. Customer Care : Thank you for sharing your findings with us. It might be that the Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid is too potent for your skin. For the combination skin we in general recommend the Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Gel. It is best to gradually build up use of a BHA product, starting to use it a couple of times a week only. If there is no adverse reaction this may be increased to every other day at night and then, if you wish, every night. Some people increase use to twice daily (morning and night) but it really all depends on the condition of your skin. You need to experiment a bit to see what suits you best. One thing is important: when you use a BHA product (or any other exfoliant), you should always wear a sunscreen during the day.
(Posted on 27/05/2014)
Review by Douglas
- I will keep this simple...If you want to clear your skin up without upsetting it...use this in combination with the resist toner and moisturising spf...I have had acne for years and have tried everything to clear it...nothing worked until I found paulas choice. (Posted on 26/05/2014)
Review by Tash
I love this toner, in the few weeks I've started using this it has stopped me from getting fresh/hormonal breakouts and has started to clear the pesky whiteheads lurking at the top of my chin.
However, as I've been applying it (with my fingers as advised in the video), it has sometimes caught the skin just outside my lip line and has caused it to go dry and flaky which never happens to me as I have oily skin (hence the 4 stars).
I still love and will continue to use this product but it's a bit annoying not to mention sore; just need to be a bit more careful in the mornings! (Posted on 23/05/2014)
Review by Emily
- I heard great things about this product but it had a terrible effect on my skin (I have no known allergies, by the way). After using the exfoliant every night for four nights, the skin on my cheeks, chin and upper lip was, red, dry, felt hot to the touch and it stung horribly to apply even the gentlest moisturizer. Now, a few days later, my skin if peeling like crazy. I don't doubt this products works well for others, but I would DEFINITELY advise testing this product on a small patch of skin before going all-out. I know I can't be the only person to have experienced this type of reaction. Customer Care: Thank you for your review. We are sorry to hear of your experience and discomfort. Although this is not a common response, we do understand that each customer is uniquely different in how they will respond to products or ingredients. We usually recommend to gradually build up use of a BHA product, starting to use it a couple of times a week only. If there is no adverse reaction this may be increased to every other day at night and then, if you wish, every night. Some people increase use to twice daily (morning and night) but it really all depends on the condition of your skin. We will contact you regarding this issue. (Posted on 07/04/2014)
Review by Alissa
- This is honestly the only thing had has helped me since I got my first breakouts when I was 15. Ten years later, I discover one product that more or less changed my life. I don't have breakouts anymore but clogged pores and dull skin have always been my problems. Even my mom who is a skin therapist has been clueless about my skin, and now after some month of using this exfoliant - she can't believe her eyes. Everything is gone! My pores are clear, my skin is tight and super smooth. I usually don't write reviews but I am so grateful for this and I hope that more people discover this wonderful product. You don't have to have skin problems to use it, it will give you that healthy glow and a silky smooth feeling that so few products can guarantee. Thank you, Paula. (Posted on 30/01/2014)
Review by AAU
- I was always having blocked pores problem which led to acne and acne scars. I have been using this exfoliant for almost a year now and just cannot live without it. My skin has become so clear with no acne at all. In average, acne comes around once in 2-3months. I have tried many skin care lines from drugstore to premium ones but nothing delivers as good as this one. The best product from PC that suits me and helped me. It changed my life. Even my boyfriend says I have a very healthy skin. I dont even need to use as much foundation anymore. I can just go with compact powder. Thanks PC. (Posted on 11/12/2013)
Review by eleanor
- I was dubious about trying this product, as through the years I have spent £££s on products to sort out my combined acne prone skin. I have been using this twice daily after a single cleanse in the morning and a double cleanse in the evening before moisturising. I use a few drops onto my fingertips that I rub onto the whole of my face. It has taken maybe two months before I started to notice a real difference but WOW!! I glow! My skin is even toned, clear, pores are cleaner-it didn't remove the blackheads on my nose but extraction was much easier and it takes much longer now before any come back. I have had a couple of very small spots on my chin due to hormones but they went quickly, and weren't the huge ones that stay for ages like I normally get. And the main difference for me is that I would be happy going out without any makeup on my skin, which has not happened for nearly 20years! I have been using it for nearly three months now, and have hardly touched the amount in the bottle. Please never discontinue this Paula, its a life (face) changer! (Posted on 27/07/2013)
Review by Jay
- Unfortunately this product was way to strong for my acne prone skin. It made my acne worse and i was told by customer service (who are amazing btw- other companies should take note), that to carry on trying it, but less frequently, maybe alternative days and see if it improves. I did this and it sort of did, but i was still getting spots and they were painful. I did however give it to my cousin, and she's found it an absolute miracle for stubborn spots around the chin. So overall, works for some and not others. My advice would be to try the 1% if your acne is up to moderate/high moderate acne and not to dive in morning and night. Instead use is maybe only at night on alternative days so your skin can get use to it as it is potent stuff. Currently i'm using the 1% lotion, even though it's for dry skin (mine is oily) but because i'm using Paula's oil control products i need the lotion just to balance my skin out. Something for some people to keep in mind. (Posted on 04/07/2013)
Review by Eddie
- I bought this product a little over a month ago, and it is great for halting and diminishing persistent break outs. When applied it is a little sticky and shiny, but let it dry out and your skin feels smooth. I have not seen any change to the tone of my skin (since it has only been 1 month) but I do feel a sense of confidence in using it to quickly get rid of unwanted embarrassing spots. If applied under the Paul's Choice SPF15 mattifying moisturiser, it will will leave your skin feeling smooth and clean. As a black male, I would recommend this for targeting ingrown hairs and correcting visible signs of ageing. (Posted on 20/06/2013)
Review by Robert
I'm a man in my mid-twenties that suffers from breakouts and oily skin and this has had more of an effect on my skin than any other product. My skin is very sensitive and temperamental so I originally only intended to use it once or twice a week, but I became addicted to the extra-clean, smooth feeling on my skin the next morning so now I use it every day and it's never caused me a problem. It's noticeably improved the overall look and feel of my skin, I still get breakouts every now and then but, since the health and look of my skin is much better, they don't seem as noticeable and heal much quicker.
It's totally indispensable to me now! (Posted on 05/03/2013)
Review by Lauren
I originally purchased this alongside the 8% AHA gel. Unfortunately, I was far too enthusiastic in my application of both and they ended up aggravating my skin and I cast them aside as yet another useless skin car purchase that broke me out in more acne rather than solving it.
However, I ended up using the BHA again several months done the line after I found myself desperate. And what a difference! I use this in conjunction with azelaic acid and it has turned my skin from regularly having inflamed pimples into skin that suffers only because of hormones. I use the BHA first, allow it to dry and then apply the azelaic acid and the combined effect is brilliant.
The BHA is easy to apply although the old bottle (I have yet to try the new packaging) released far too much of the product. I don't use cotton pads as it wastes too much of the liquid - I just use my fingers which is perfectly adequate. It dries quickly and doesn't irritate my skin.
It is perfect to use all over or to spot treat when I have an inflamed pustule that needs to be calmed down - it has a positive effect on redness and the application of the BHA really ensures that the spot heals quickly. If I ever suffer a breakout, the BHA is the first thing I bring out and I feel reassured that it will deal with the problem quickly and effectively. The amount of product is excellent and is long lasting, even with application every night.
My only quibble (and it is minor) is the price is very high and including the packaging, it costs me over £25! I understand shipping costs are out of PC's control but the price itself is high. I wish Paula would look at lowering the prices to encourage more customers to try her amazing range.
I would advise anyone to try this BHA....just don't go overboard with trying this and many other products at the same time or you might lose the good effects of the BHA! (Posted on 04/12/2012)
Review by Marika
- I purchased this product about two months ago and was really hoping I'd finally found a product that would make a difference in my skin. After all, I'd read so many good reviews that I had to try it. At first it really helped keeping the oil away. Almost felt like I'd had a facelift. The main reason though, why I bought this product in the first place was to get rid off the really stubborn blackheads all over my face. But even after two months I haven't seen any kind of change in either the amount or the size of them. I'm only giving it 2 stars because it hasn't really done anything to me, also because it's a bit on the pricey side (especially after shipping). :( Customer care : Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. We are sorry to hear you have not noticed better results. The amount of time it will take to see improvement really can vary from person to person and ultimately depends on the extent of the condition or concern they are trying to address as well has how they are using the products. Some consumers will notice results promptly while others will notice results over the course of a few weeks or months. We encourage you to contact customer care so that we may discuss your skin type and make any needed suggestions (Posted on 24/10/2012)
Review by zaharia
Can I use Liquid Exfoliant
BHA 2% and AHA 10% during pregnancy and breastfeeding?
Customer Care: It is always best to consult your doctor on issues such as this because he or she is the one who is most aware of your personal health and because it's his or her specific field of study. Also we would like to refer to an article by Paula on this website: http://www.paulaschoice-eu.com/learn/en/baby-skin-care/skin-care-products-and-pregnancy (Posted on 16/10/2012)
Review by Paula
I've been using it for three weeks now and this is a miracle in a bottle for me! I never review any products I buy even though I am sort of a cosmetics junkie, but this is so good I had to write about it. I have combination skin that is actually quite clear (just the odd breakout, but nothing bad) and I had some blackheads on my nose. Well, HAD. They are simply gone. My skin is so very smooth now and when I see myself in the mirror I sort of look like an airbrushed version of myself.
If I could give other readers a piece of advice I would say just be patient and let the product work its magic, give it a few weeks. I almost gave up on this in the first week because when you apply it, your skin looks very shiny, almost glassy. It gets better over time. Yes, my skin is shinier now but I'd much rather have to apply blotting powder more often on my perfect skin than have blackheads all over the place.
Now I'm trying this on my boyfriend's skin. He has oily/combination skin with breakouts, enlarged pores and an uneven texture. We'll see how it goes. It's a miracle already that he's agreed to this!
To Customer Care: is it normal that skin feels shinier and/or oilier with this product? Customer Care : Thank you for your review. We can advise you to use a little bit less of the product, that should take away the shinier feeling.. (Posted on 12/09/2012)
Review by Anthony
This exfoliant is excellent! For a while I have struggled with those little under-the-skin spots on my forehead that just never seem to go away. This exfoliant got rid of them completely and left my skin feeling so smooth! It's an excellent exfoliant! However, it's a little too potent for my skin. After applying, my skin itched and had a slight stinging sensation in some parts and my nose was left red, but that's not the exfoliant's fault. Also, due to the irritation I don't think it was as effective on my blackheads as it could have been as they've not been reduced very much. I do know that it takes time for them to go, however. In conclusion, my skin just simply cannot tolerate such a high percentage or PH of 2% liquid BHA. Instead, I will be using the CLEAR Targeted Blemish Relief Toner (it's an exfoliant) as it is 2% liquid BHA but at a milder PH.
I am going to give it five stars as I cannot fault a well formulated product based on the fact that my skin cannot tolerate the high level of ingredients in it. (Posted on 16/08/2012)
Review by amymummy
- I have been using this for quite some time now, with mixed results. First let me tell you about my skin. I have dry skin in general, particularly my forehead and cheeks are dry and can often feel tight after cleansing and toning. I do have some congestion around my chin, get the occasional breakout around my time of the month and also suffer from the odd whitehead. I also have some wrinkles on my forehead and the root of my nose. I'm 37 and fair with some sensitivity, but nothing extreme. Generally my skin is quite clear, though, except my nose where I have A LOT of blackheads. That's where this product was supposed to come in. I like it, as it goes on easily and does not strip my skin. I was worried about that, but I do not even feel the need to put a moisturizer on straight away after this, which is unusual. It obviously has a moisturizing effect. It also makes my skin really smooth and even. I get that shine now, not oily, but the kind you try to get when you put a highlighter on. The light kind of bounces of my cheek bones. However, it has done nothing for the blackheads on my nose, which is what I wanted it for. So, only three stars. It's a lovely product, but did not quite work for me. Maybe customer care could suggest one of the other exfoliants for me to try, as I really want to get rid of them. They make me feel self conscious. Customer Care : Thank you for your review. For the dry/more sensitive skin we prefer to recommend the BHA lotion. With very stubborn blackhead we advise to consult an beautician. When the blackheads are removed the use of the BHA will prevent hem from coming back. (Posted on 05/08/2012)
Review by Konstantinos
Doesn't sting, it absorbs instantly and most of all keeps breakouts & irritations off the charts! Feels sticky for a couple of minutes but doesn't bother me at all!
I usually shave my face in the evening since I prefer waking up fresh and clean. I am using a couple of good drops on the entire face and the results are exactly what I need!
For any guy out-there, this product combined with one of Paula's Choice toners are simply the best 'after-shave' and/or 'moisturizer' combination you can possibly have. Specially for those with oily skin that prone to ingrown hair & breakouts. (Posted on 19/07/2012)
Review by Silvic
- I have combination, sensitive and prone to breakouts (cloged pores). I used this instead of toner as toners burned my skin and gave me red raised spots. It felt tight on my skin so had to use serum straight away to get rid of the tightness. My breakouts reduced (to about once or twice a month) but blackheads remained. I now use RESIST AHA daily and weekly treatments (no tightness! no breakouts! no blackheads!) (Posted on 10/07/2012)
Review by Farhana
I am now on my 3rd bottle and can't go without it. Its one of the best BHA products i've used and love that its in a liquid base, which i spritz all over my face and it slightly moisturizes my skin and calms down the irritation and gets rid of black heads. I use this after cleansing and before my acne medication and works really well. Even though its listed as an exfoliater i use it as a toner and think it is the most gentle BHA product i have ever tried, which calms intead of irritates like most products with BHA in it.
I just wanted to ask whether the new bottles can still be used with the spray pump i purchased with my previous one? Thanks Customer Care:Thank you for your nice review. We are pleased to inform you that the spray pump can be used with the new packing. (Posted on 14/06/2012)
Review by Martin
- I use this with a spray-thingy sold for € 2,5 for my back and the acne I have on my shoulders and my chest. I first tried the skin revealing body lotion -- but smearing lotion on your back is not as easy as it's said. Spraying BHA onto the back however is a lot easier and less prone to injuries in the neck or wrists. A bottle will not last very long, the back is a lot bigger than a face, but it's well worth it to get read of those nasty bumps. (Posted on 17/04/2012)
Review by Mathilda
- Fantastic product i doubt i could manage without ever again! cleanes and smoothes my skin and i really notice the difference. i recommend this or the AHA gel to all my friends. (Posted on 28/03/2012)
Review by Alexandra
I love this product, I use it almost daily, in the evening. It does what it says, it prevents ugly stuff to stay out of my face, also my skin is so soft and uniform. People with oily/combination skin know that this is a wow, as we don;t really have soft and uniform skin on touch. I used to have a lot of dead skin sinked into sebum, which at touch felt so nasty. Now my face is on the right path using this product, accompanied with pc's moisturiser and cleanser. Even so, i still have blackheads, less, but still there. I will start soon a session with 20%BHa treatments and hope to get rid of this problem.
I offered just 3 stars, even though the product itself would deserve a full 5 star rating, because of the delivery sistem and everything related to it. The shipping is SO EXPENSIVE! ?I mean, come on, it is JUST 15 EUROS, as much as almost a full size product! It is a lot. I use to place some orders in the USA at other sites and pay like 5$ on shipping, and still, it is USA! It is always so complicated so place an order, as you have to find someone to do it with, you must wait etc. PLUS, i totaly dislike to difference between the european site and the american one. In the USA, products are A LOT CHEAPER than here, not to mention the difference between the conversion rate for euro and for a dollar. For a person outsite the Euro-zone, this is another inconvenience. These things make a lot of people to quit ordering from your site, despide the wonderful products. (i know the european site is a francise, but i think you can still find some more attractive solutions for both parties).
Thank you. Customer Care : We thank you for your review and we are sorry to hear that you are disappointed in Paula's Choice Europe. With regard to your reference to the prices on the website of Paula’s Choice USA, we would like to point out that prices on the EU website include VAT (which averages at 19% in the EU) and that no other import duties or taxes are payable on delivery of the goods. Prices on the website of Paula’s Choice USA are exclusive of VAT (which is payable on importing the goods in the EU) and any other import duties or taxes which may apply.
In addition PC Europe has to deal with extra costs to comply with EU regulations and EU testing policies. Our postal rates are at actual cost for sending parcels from the Netherlands to the various destinations within the European Union amongst which Romania. We monitor these costs carefully. What some of our customers do is placing a joint order with friends or relatives, so they can share these costs.
(Posted on 04/03/2012)
Review by early forties
- I have recently had sporadic breakouts and had ordered some samples of this and other products both from Paula's choice and other pharmacy sold products. Unfortunately, this irritates my skin (causes redness) and it leaves a oily texture on the t-zone. Perhaps other formulations, such as gel form work better. I did find a product at the local pharmacy, not reviewed on beautypedia, Kerancyl Soin Régulateur Complet from Ducray, to have similar ingredients (BHA and AHA, though yes has perfume), to be more effective and NOT cause skin irritation. (Posted on 17/01/2012)
Review by Marina
- I just wanted to say thank you for your great products! I know you've heard it before,but my skin has changed at 360 degrees. I am using Bha 2%, glycolic acid 10%, and resist anti -aging hydrator for almost 2 months and after 3 years of testing all kind of products I can say I am happy now. I usually don't write reviews but I hope it can be useful for women that have skin problems. I was one of them ( I am 27 and I had problems since I was 24),but not any more! Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year! You and your team give hopes for a lot of people!! (Posted on 25/12/2011)
Review by lola
- I am a black young lady with sensitive and oily skin. This year my skin has been really turbulent and even reacted to 'for senstive skin' products I bought from the high street. I tried Paula's 1% BHA (gel) and thought it was okay. But it was one of thos products which would work one day and not another. However, the liquid version is just AMAZING! After just one application, my skin looked really glowy and the scars that i had were severly reduced. What's more it evened out my skin complexion and reduced the size of the annoying spots i had on my chin. I am soooo happy as prior to this i was feeling really depressed. However, I have also been drinking herbal and green tea which has good purifying affects on skin. So anyone wishing to have the over night miracle that I had, may want to try that as well! (Posted on 04/10/2011)
Review by Marjan
Im a 22 year old woman, previous skin condition: deep painful acne without surfacing, very oily skin all over, blackheads on nose and chin, overall large pores.
It took about 6 weeks until I noticed results and people started complementing me on my even skintone.
I use it twice a day and it leaves you sticky feeling for max an hour but afterwards my skin feels softer than ever, haven't had the need to use toner, moisturizer or scrub twice a week. Leaves a great base for foundation.
My pores have reduced remarkably, especially on my nose and apples.
The blackheads on my nose are still there but somehow they don't stand out.
As long as I stay away from chocolate, drink lots of water and use Paula's Choice, I feel super clean and beautiful! (Posted on 02/09/2011)
Review by Shannon
- After reading all the reviews about Paula's exfoliating products I chose 2% liquid and have not been sorry. I've had problem blackheads (and whiteheads) in my T-zone & cheeks which have drastically reduced in the month since I started using this product. I'm using it both morning and night in conjunction with Skin Balancing Cleanser, Toner, Daily Mattifying Lotion & Super Antioxidant Mattifying Concentrate Serum and on occasion, the Carbon Mask. I started using all of the products at the same time so I could get the best results possible and started seeing improvement the second day! I apply the BH liquid with my fingertips because I find it more effective but it's less messy with a cotton pad. I will upgrade my rating to 5 stars if and when it completely rids my blackheads. (Posted on 03/08/2011)
Review by Julia
I tried the gel some time ago, didn't like it, didn't really give it a chance either though. Another product that tells you to get rid of all the bad skin forever? Yeah right.
After months of extremely irritated skin (it's very sensitive, and I have tried a lot of different skin products the past year and a half) that wasn't able to heal itself any more and therefore wouldn't stop breaking out, I decided to give it another try and ordered the liquid samples instead. At night after cleansing, I let my skin dry completely, put the exfoliator on. You really have to learn to deal with the stickiness, but if you let it dry for some minutes before putting your moisturizer on, it won't be too bad.
After a few days my skin obviously started to regenerate and clear up (only used it at night to avoid flaky skin). Thus, I ordered the bottle and after using it for about two weeks, I start getting compliments on my skin again.
I'm usually not so much for hyping a product (or anything in fact) but you should give this a chance. The only minus would be the high shipping costs, but other than that I'm really, really happy with the BHA liquid. No, in fact, I LOVE IT! (Posted on 16/07/2011)
Review by Jo
Great first line but it is true, I have suffered with acne/blackheads all my life due to a hormonal imbalance, and I was lucky enough to be told about Paulas choice by a friend (who has the most beautiful skin in the world!).
The product is great, I'm on my second batch of this now and my skin glows, and it has definitely got rid of most of my blackheads on the nose/chin area. There are still a few but I hope these will continue to go down now I'm on my second bottle.
You only need a small amount, I use it twice daily now and the 1 bottle lasted me nearly 6months! Brilliant value for money. It does make your skin flakey for the first couple of weeks, dont be put off though. Its worth it when your new skin underneath glows. I no longer have to wear moisturisers with a hint of tan in it because of this.
(Posted on 21/06/2011)
Review by Fio
- The first ever product I bought from Paula's choice was the 8% AHA gel, that was good but my stubborn blackheads didn't completely disappear. I decided to try what paula recommended which was this products. So far (a few weeks in) I've noticed a bigger difference in the texture of my skin and it's much softer and more luminous. My skin is normally oily and very sensitive so this has helped to normalize my skin without causing irritation. I'm also using the skin balancing toner and serum. (Posted on 19/05/2011)
Review by Ste
- I have oily / combination skin and this has worked wonders on my blackheads and has removed all the tiny bumps on my skin. I did not realise how smooth my skin could be until I used this. I have only been using it for a month and can't wait to see even further improvement. (Posted on 03/05/2011)
Review by Rachel
- This product really works ! it helps me achieve clear glowing skin , bump free !!!!! after having bad skin for over 20 years ! i just wish i had found this product years ago , and also spending hundreds of pounds on products that dont do anything , i cannot praise paulas choice products enough , everything i use is amazing and really works to make the skin look wonderfull (Posted on 06/04/2011)
Review by meks
I love this product, it really makes the change.
Every time I apply it, I get a breakout of little white pimples, which are easy to squeeze and don't leave any spots on the skin. This product appears a bit oily, so it is very easy to apply on the skin. Your skin looks glowy, refreshed and nice in the morning. All the tiredness disappeares – all that is left is renewed and glowy skin. My skin is also a bit dry and flaky in the morning, so you have to use adequate ammount of moisturizer.
I use this product 2-3 times a week, which I find is sufficient, since my skin is not very problematic. Day after the use I can easily remove the pimples and blackheads on my skin.
I would prefer if this product was packed in a bottle with a pump but otherwise i can only say good things about this product. I recommend it to anybody who has problems with pimples, blackhead and can not get rid off spots left by squeezing the pimples.
(Posted on 06/12/2010)
Review by gill
- This product is one of the best I have ever used on my skin - I have seen such a difference in my skin since using it. I tend to suffer from those annoying spots that are just lumpy and take ages to go away but this product is ideal for getting rid of them completely and reasonably quickly. Will defintely be repurchasing! (Posted on 26/04/2010)
Review by suzanne
I didn't realise the difference between AHA' and BHA's until I watched Paula's videos.
I'm not sure many UK salons know the difference as BHA peels/products don't seem to be available. I had bought the only option available - expensive AHA's peels - when trying to improve my skin. I gave up when after £300 of AHA (6 week course recommended, as ever!) made my breakout worse.
I think I found out about Paula's Choice products when scouring the Acne websites and forums. My 39 year old skin now is the clearest it has ever been since I was last on full on antibiotics/the pill. For the first time in years I am happy to go out without makeup so good is the effect. It really is a unique product for anyone if you are plagued by acne and blocked pores – nothing like it on the UK high street. I started with the 1% lotion but I think I only used on bottle of that before moving on to the 2% liquid - I like the feel of the liquid better. I definitely get breakout if I don't use it regularly so I am in no doubt it is the BHA that is making the difference for my skin.
Prior to the 2% BHA liquid I had tried prescribed topicals, antibiotics and the pill for years on end (as well as every OTC topical option available). No one wants to be on antibiotics for years and I wasn't happy being on the pill for my skin.
The BHA did exactly what Paula said it would. (Posted on 25/03/2010)
Review by James
- This exfoliator smoothes skin effectively whilst feeling light on the skin. However, if your skin is sensitive you might want to start with a gel as this is powerful stuff. (Posted on 18/11/2009)
Review by Eric
This is my favourite product within the whole Paula's Choice range : it exfoliates perfectly my oily and very sensitive skin without any stinging sensation (except when I use it after shaving but the sting is very light and dissipates quickly), it reduces redness on the most reactive parts of my face and, last but not least, it dries slowly wich allows the moisturizer that follows to slip over the skin (which reduces irritation) and act better.
Thank you very very much Paula :-))) (Posted on 15/08/2009)
Review by Hec
- This bha product is the best one I have tried. It really erases blackheads in almost 100%, softs skin and gets rid of light dark spots. It makes the difference in a skincare treatment. Thanks a lot Paula!. (Posted on 19/05/2009)
Review by Shelley
- This is one of my favourite products by far. I recently got laser eye surgery to correct my vision and could not let water near my face. I used the 2% BHA liquid with a cotton pad and in the past week it has kept my skin free of dirt and oil. I am now back cleansing my face with water and my One Step Cleanser normal/oily skin and just love being able to use it again. This BHA liquid has saved me from getting spots and I will continue to use it forever. Please do not discontinue this or I will be very upset! (Posted on 17/05/2009)
To reduce skin flaking or possible irritation, some first-time users should use the BHA once a day or once every other day (preferably at night) for the first few weeks. After prolonged use (4-6 weeks), you can apply the BHA more frequently, and eventually it can be used twice a day. For some people it may only be necessary to use the BHA once a day or once every other day. The frequency of use for this BHA product completely depends on how your skin reacts so you may have to experiment until you find what works best for you. If redness, dryness, or irritation occurs, adjust frequency of application.
There are many options for how to use this type of product. You may have to experiment to figure out your best routine. The one you should use depends on what you are trying to achieve and what works best for your skin.
BHA is an essential step for battling blemishes or clogged pores. See the Skin Care Routines section for a recommended selection of products for your skin type. If your skin gets worse or rashes appear, discontinue use and refer to my Battle Plan for Blemishes page for other product options.
If dryness or slight irritation appears, do not give up, first decrease use to every other day or just once a day and you can still experience beautiful results.
Some people want to know if they can use a scrub while using BHA. Occasional use of a gentle scrub or a soft washcloth can be great for some skin types. Just be careful to gauge how your skin reacts before adding this once or twice a week step into your routine.
This product can also be used on the elbows, feet, or knees. It is a multi-purpose exfoliant that works almost anywhere!
If you have Rosacea:
We have received a lot of feedback from people with rosacea who are having a great deal of success with Paula's Choice BHA products. The reason for this may be due to BHA's relation to aspirin. Aspirin and BHA are both salicylates. Salicylates have anti-inflammatory properties. At the same time that BHA exfoliates the skin (removing the flaky skin problem associated with rosacea) it also calms down the redness!
Sources to support the claims made for Exfoliating 2% BHA Liquid:
International Immunopharmacology, August 2009, pages 1,126–1,130; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2007, pages 124-135; Journal of Cosmetic Science, November-December 2004, pages 519-531; Archives of Internal Medicine, July 2002, pages 1531–1532; Annals of Dermatology and Venereology, January 2002, pages 137–142; Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, volume 175, issue 1, pages 76–82; Preservatives for Cosmetics, 2006, by David Steinberg, Allured Publishing, pages 39-40; Pain, January 1996, pages 71–82; and Seminars in Dermatology, December 1990, pages 305–308.
What's the difference between the 2% BHA Liquid and the 2% BHA Gel?
First, texture: One is a fluid with a toner-like consistency, the other is a thicker, clear gel. Both contain the same amount of salicylic acid, though the 2% BHA Liquid contains an ingredient that allows the salicylic acid to penetrate faster and further. With the 2% BHA Gel formula, you're getting a slower release of salicylic acid. Both are great options for treating acne, blackheads, and signs of aging. Both are suitable for all skin types but best for normal to oily or combination skin.
What's the difference between AHA and BHA exfoliants? Do I need both?
When properly formulated, both AHAs and BHA are brilliant options for exfoliating the surface of skin. Both AHA and BHA work to reduce wrinkles, stimulate collagen, and firm skin but each has its special qualities you'll want to consider when deciding which one to use:
+ AHAs are preferred for sun-damaged and dry skin because they exfoliate on the surface of skin and have the added benefit of also improving moisture content.
+ BHA is preferred for oily, acne-prone skin and for treating blackheads and white bumps because BHA can get through the oil that's clogging your pores, normalizing the lining of the misshapen pore that contributes to acne.
+ BHA has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial action. Those are two more reasons to use a BHA exfoliant if you have acne or sensitive, reddened skin.
+ BHA is preferred for those struggling with rosacea. Not everyone with rosacea can tolerate an exfoliant, but it is wise to experiment with a BHA product to see how your rosacea responds.
+ If your skin is sun-damaged and you're also struggling with acne or clogged pores, add a BHA product to your routine.
+ If you'd like to use an AHA and BHA at the same time, that is an option, though not really necessary. Some people find they work well when they're applied at the same time, but if you want to give this a try it is best to apply them separately, one during the day and one in the evening.
How do I use an AHA or BHA exfoliant?
+ You can apply an AHA or BHA product once or twice a day.
+ You can also apply either of these around the eye area but not on the eyelid or directly under the eye.
+ Apply the AHA or BHA product after your face is cleansed and after your toner has dried.
+ Once the AHA or BHA has been absorbed, you can apply any other product in your routine, such as moisturizer, serum, eye cream, sunscreen, and/or foundation.
+ If you're using a topical prescription product with retinoids, or any of the topical prescription products for rosacea, apply the BHA or AHA first.
Your AHA (glycolic acid) products have a higher percentage than your BHA (salicylic acid) products. Does this mean AHA is a stronger exfoliant?
AHA products are most effective at a 5% to 10% concentration and BHA at 1% to 2% concentration. Think about it like making bread, the amount of yeast you need is tiny in comparison to the amount of flour you use but equally important to get the results you want. The percentage of effectiveness varies depending on the ingredient. Rest assured that the BHA products are not any less effective due to lower concentrations of the exfoliant.
The Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant feels sticky and kind of greasy on my face! Why is that?
If the BHA is feeling sticky, you are probably using too much product. The average amount necessary for facial application of the 2% BHA is less than the size of a dime. The product is best applied in a thin layer, and has great spreading properties. The "greasy" feel can be attributed to the high levels of glycol in this product (glycol helps the BHA penetrate the surface layers of skin and also works as a water-binding agent). If you live in a humid, moist climate, this effect will be more pronounced and, if too much product is used, can create a "greasy" feel on the skin. Many customers have remarked how silky-soft their skin is as a result of using the 2% BHA Liquid, and that is the result of the humectants working with the BHA to exfoliate and hydrate the skin.
At what point after my laser and/or peel procedure can I begin using my BHA exfoliant again?
First, we urge you to follow the post-procedure instructions your doctor or nurse provided. If nothing was mentioned about when to resume use of a BHA exfoliant, please contact the doctor's office where you had the procedure done. Otherwise, our general advice is to begin using your BHA again as soon as possible. Or, if your skin seems extra-sensitive, you may want to wait and apply the BHA exfoliant a few days post-procedure. Salicylic acid is an excellent anti-inflammatory ingredient that can enhance skin's natural healing process as it works to reduce post-procedure redness.
Our Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant is actually identical to our Clear Extra Strength Anti-Redness Exfoliating Solution 2% BHA, except for the packaging and the placement in our Skin Perfecting line.