I have been hoping for some glycolic acid products from The Ordinary, and they have two absolutely fantastic ones. In this post I will review The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution.
Their other glycolic acid product is the AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, which is officially in my top 10 skincare products of all time.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution Review
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution contains 7% glycolic acid, amino acids, aloe vera, ginseng, and tasmanian pepperberry.
It is supposed to visibly target textural irregularities and lacklustre tones. It is supposed to offer mild exfoliation for improved radiance and skin clarity.
It contains 240ml of product.
This is supposed to be used no more than once a day (preferably at night). As with all chemical exfoliants, you’re supposed to use a suncreen while using this, and for one week after you stop using it. Although, sunscreen should be worn all the time.
The Ordinary Glycolic Toner is oil-free, alcohol-free, silicone-free, vegan, gluten-free and cruelty-free.
You can see all the scientific details about pH and pka, as well as a full ingredient list and pretty much anything you’d like to know here.
I really like the packaging! Finally something from The Ordinary that’s not in a dropper or a tube, yay! 😊
I like the nozzle thingy. It twists up to open and dispense liquid and it twists down to close firmly. It doesn’t leak. This actually comes with a screw cap on, and the nozzle included. So you can use whichever you prefer. Or you can keep the screw cap for when you’re traveling, which is what I’ve done.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner has a slight pleasant fruity smell, and a faint golden orangey amber tint to it
This is basically a toner, and you’re supposed to pour it onto a cotton pad and swipe all over your face, avoiding the eye area. Since this is supposed to be used once a day, I use it at night and use a simple hydrating rosewater toner in the morning.
I don’t usually experience any burning or tingling from this. The only time I felt a slight tingle was when I used this the same night as the AHA 30% BHA 2% Peeling Solution. Apart from that, it has been fine. It didn’t irritate my skin or break me out.
My skin has been looking pretty good, but I will atribute that to the Peeling Solution and my skincare routine as a whole, and not just to this toner.
I wasn’t expecting this to do anything drastic as I already own and use tons of other glycolic acid toners like the Pixi Glow Tonic. I just needed it to not break me out and to maintain the radiance of my skin.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner vs Pixi Glow Tonic
If you’re wondering how the Pixi Glow Tonic compares to The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution, I have used both and here’s what I think.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid toner contains 7% glycolic acid while The Pixi Glow Tonic contains 5% glycolic acid.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toning Solution should only be used once a day preferably at night. The Pixi Glow Tonic can be used both morning and night.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toning Solution has a pH of 3.6 which is apparently the ideal pH level for acids to work on the skin and this makes it better for exfoliation. It has a pka level of 3.6 and this is also apparently a good thing because there is less likelihood of irritation when pka is close to ph. I couldn’t find any information on the Pixi website about pka and pH levels, but I’m seeing unverified information floating around on the internet that the Glow Tonic has a pH level of 5.5 which is not optimal and could be irritating.
Pixi Glow Tonic contains witch hazel and fragrance, which are excluded from The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner. Both are alcohol-free. Both contain ginseng and aloe vera.
Pixi Glow Tonic contains 250ml of product while The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution contains 240ml of product.
Those are the facts; here are my thoughts. Having used the Pixi Glow Tonic for years now, and in my experience, it is no more irritating than The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner. However, I have oily skin. Pixi Glow Tonic contains witch hazel which is an astringent, which makes it a good option for oily skin. The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toning Solution doesn’t contain witch hazel which makes it less drying, and better suited for dry skin.
The Pixi Glow Tonic can be used twice a day, which I find really convenient. Now that I use The Ordinary’s Glycolic Toning Solution (which cannot be used more than once a day) I’ve had to add a second non-acid toner to my daily routine for the mornings.
In my opinion, they both have their pros and cons, and if budget is your biggest concern, The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner is an excellent alternative to the Pixi Glow Tonic. But if money is no object, I have to reiterate that after almost 4 years of use, I have seen great results with the Pixi Glow Tonic and I haven’t experienced any irritation with it. I personally find the Pixi Glow Tonic a little more convenient for reasons stated above.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner Review: Final Thoughts.
I really like The Ordinary Glycolic Acid toner and I think it does what it claims to do. Plus it’s super affordable and seems to be formulated to give maximum results with minimum irritation.
I love glycolic acid and it has worked out quite well for my skin, but I know of a few people who it hasn’t worked out for, and this seems like it could be a great product for either people who haven’t tried glycolic acid in the past and want to do so without spending too much money, or those who have tried it from other brands but didn’t like it for whatever reason. I also like that it has 7% glycolic which is a nice option for people who want to step up from the usual 5% we see in most widely available toners.
PS: If you’re not sure about putting all these scary sounding acids on your face, or you want a bit more information on chemical exfoliation and acid toners, this post should help.
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