This Drugstore Serum Sells a Bottle Every Minute, and Is Basically a Chemical Peel in a Bottle

Photo: Stocksy/Alexey Kuzma
Every so often, a product comes onto the market and it becomes an instant classic. Remember when Glossier Balm Dotcom ($12) came out? I certainly do, because it was so dang hard to get my hands on one. But the latest launch to immediately elevate itself to cult-fave beauty product status is not only really good, but it's also available at the drugstore. L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 10% Pure Glycolic Acid Serum ($23), which launched in October, 2019, has already skyrocketed to selling a bottle every minute in the United States.

The formulation was developed by dermatologists, and the 10-percent pure glycolic acid is enough to resurface skin the same way a chemical peel would... for a whole lot less than what it would cost you for a peel at a derm's office. The OG chemical exfoliant is lauded for its ability to improve skin's tone and texture, getting rid of discoloration as well as fine lines. Historically, though, getting your hands (and face) on a glycolic product that actually works would cost you a pretty penny, but considering the affordable price tag on this particular serum, it's no wonder that the masses have fallen in love with it at first sight. Board-certified dermatologist Dhaval Bhanusali, MD is also a fan, noting that in addition to having a powerful amount of glycolic, the serum also has hydrating components like hyaluronic acid and glycerin to balance things out.

Since glycolic acid helps remove dead skin cells from the surface of your skin (the way all exfoliants, chemical and physical, are known to do), this highly-concentrated solution of the stuff clears the way for your other products to penetrate more deeply. This means that for the cost of one $23 bottle, you'll also be getting more bang for your buck on your pricier products, too. But one thing worth keeping in mind? "It's strong, so if you have sensitive skin or a darker skin tone, I'd proceed with a bit more caution," says Dr. Bhanusali, who warns that he's seen chemical burns in certain skin types using solutions that are 10 percent and higher concentrations. To be safe, he suggests spot treating a small area before slathering it all over your face.

The new glycolic serum is in good company alongside other derm-approved products by L'Oréal Paris, including L'Oréal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives Hyaluronic Acid Serum ($20), which was also selling a bottle a minute at this time last year. Pro tip: Using the two fan-fave serums together in the same routine is a great way to keep your skin happy and hydrated—and for these prices, your wallet will be happy, too.

To learn more about exfoliation (and exactly how you often you should be doing it) press play on the video below:

Already using a retinol in your routine? Here's what derms want you to know about pairing it with a glycolic. Plus, our favorite drugstore moisturizers to seal in all that active ingredient goodness. 

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