How Often Should I Wash My Face With Glycolic Acid?

How Often Should I Wash My Face With Glycolic Acid?

If you have acne-prone skin or you want to combat the effects of skin aging, then Glycolic acid can be recommended. 

Glycolic acid is a chemical exfoliant that can dissolve oils and dead skin cells and is useful to anybody who wants to retain a youthful look and remove blemishes. 

But how often should you wash your face with Glycolic acid? Keep reading our article to learn more. 

What is Glycolic acid?

Glycolic acid is a compound that is found in sugarcane, beets, and certain types of fruit. It belongs to a group of acids that experts refer to as Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs), and it is commonly used within exfoliating skincare products.

When applied to the face, Glycolic acid speeds skin renewal and turnover and triggers the production of collagen which helps to smooth wrinkles and increase elasticity in the skin.

For many people, Glycolic acid is a vital part of their skincare routine so can be recommended to you if you want to stave off acne and combat the tell-tale signs of aging.


  • Anti-aging: Glycolic acid smooths fine wrinkles, improves skin tone and texture, and prevents the skin from getting dry
  • Sun damage protection: Glycolic acid protects collagen from the sun and fades dark patches caused by sun damage
  • Exfoliation: Glycolic acid removes dead skin cells and boosts cell renewal to ensure the skin looks and feels soft and supple 
  • Acne-removal: Glycolic acid unclogs blockages of dead skin cells to help prevent nasty acne breakouts

How often should I wash my face with Glycolic Acid?

Bright skin and complexion

Every formula is different so you should check the instructions on the product that you are using. Those products that have ultra-strong concentrations should only be used once a week (or every other week), while those that are gentler can be used every day. 

Before you regularly start washing your face with Glycolic acid, you should do a patch test on an area of your skin that is not your face. It if irritates your skin, you may need to use another form of exfoliant.

If no symptoms of irritation occur, then you should be good to go. However, it's wise to work your way up to daily use (when using a gentle cleanser) if you're new to chemical exfoliants. Once or twice a week is recommended at first but if no problems arise within a few weeks, you should be okay to use the product daily. 

You need to make sure you follow the usage instructions on the product label as overuse could lead to irritation, dryness, and breakouts. You should also be mindful of the other products you are using. Glycolic acid can cause a reaction when used with products that contain retinol (vitamin A), for example, so avoid layering with other active ingredients. 

If you have sensitive skin, you may need to pull back the reins a little bit when applying Glycolic acid. If in doubt, speak to a healthcare professional, especially if you have a diagnosed skin condition, as they will give you bespoke recommendations on exfoliant usage. 

What time of day should I use Glycolic acid?

Glycolic acid can increase your skin's sensitivity to the sun, upping the risk of sunburn and other forms of sun damage. Therefore, it is best to use your product during your evening skincare routine so it can work its magic while you are asleep. 


Glycolic acid is an essential part of many people's skincare routines due to its anti-aging properties and ability to stave off acne breakouts. It's especially popular among people between the ages of 35-40 who will naturally start to see the effects of aging but younger people (including teens) can also benefit, especially those with oily skin who are prone to spots. 

Which exfoliating face wash product should you use? 

There are a number of products on the market but one of the most popular is Botanic Tree Glycolic acid cleanser which contains 10% Glycolic acid and Salicylic acid to give users an effective skin cleansing experience. It's cruelty-free, SLS-free, and is suitable for vegans, so is highly recommended for anybody wanting to unclog dead pores, nourish their skin, and reduce age spots, dark spots, and other forms of discoloration that cause them concern when looking in the mirror.


Botanic Tree Glycolic acid face wash


Can I use glycolic acid cleanser every day? 

Using a glycolic acid cleanser daily may be too intense for many skin types, leading to excessive dryness or sensitivity. While some people with more tolerant skin may be able to use it daily, it's important to listen to your skin and adjust the frequency accordingly.

Should I use sunscreen after using a glycolic acid cleanser? 

Yes, using sunscreen is crucial after using a glycolic acid cleanser, especially if you're washing your face in the morning. Glycolic acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun's harmful UV rays. Applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 can help protect your skin from potential damage.

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