Zit Zapper For Adults
The first time I tried Mario Badescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser, I was pregnant with Heath. My hormones were see-sawing all over the place, and I was breaking out like a middle schooler. My OB/GYN cautioned against popular anti-acne ingredients like salicylic acid or retinoids because they carried a risk of birth defects (yikes), but she did greenlight glycolic acid. Problem was, this was the early 2000s when glycolic acid products were fairly scarce, so I made an appointment at one of the few places I knew that carried glycolic products: Mario Badescu, a no-frills skin spa in midtown Manhattan.
The esthetician who did my treatment was knowledgeable and thorough. She gently deep-cleaned my flaring skin, then drew up a weekly regimen that included the aforementioned Glycolic Foaming Cleanser. It’s worth noting that she had me alternate the glycolic cleanser with their Seaweed Cleansing Soap to prevent over-drying my skin. The glycolic acid itself is typically not drying, but this particular cleanser contains sodium laurel sulfate, which can over-strip oil if over-used. Anyway, it worked. Within two weeks, my skin was clear again and stayed that way for the duration of my pregnancy.
Once my hormones settled down, post-pregnancy, I down-shifted to using the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser on an as-needed basis. Today, I keep it in the shower and use it on my chest and back after particularly sweaty workouts to prevent bumps (a.k.a. back-ne) from forming under and around my sports bra. I also use it once or twice a week in the summer or on hot, humid days when I feel grimy and greasy. And my friend Debbie just introduced me to yet another way to use this under-the-radar, anti-acne weapon: She applies a tiny drop directly to a blemish overnight, like we did with benzoyl-peroxide-containing Clearasil in the 1980s, limiting the lifespan of most bumps to about two days. Amazing.
So why does it work? Glycolic acid speeds up dead-skin-cell-shedding, removing buildup and enabling the contents of a clogged pore to drain. Used preventatively, it can also keep pores from getting clogged in the first place. Finally, as a bonus, it's a great option for our medium years because, unlike teen-centric acne treatments with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, it won't leave you red and peeling.