Intensive Serum 14% Glycolic AHA
2 fl. oz. for $18.99
Category:Skin Care > AHA Exfoliants > AHA
Last Updated:12.02.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This fragrance-free AHA exfoliant in serum form contains 14% glycolic acid, an amount that can definitely produce noticeable results in skin, especially since this product's pH is within range for the glycolic acid to exfoliate. Also on hand are soothing anti-irritants, which is good because for many 14% glycolic acid will be too much (research on routine topical use of AHAs generally recommends concentrations do not exceed 10%).

The previous formula contained a preservative blend that made it too potentially irritating for all skin types. That has been eliminated and the new preservative system prompts a new rating from us. This is recommended for occasional (such as once weekly) use by all skin types, though those with extra-sensitive skin should do a patch test first to determine if their skin can tolerate the amount of AHA this exfoliant contains.


This lightweight 14% Glycolic AHA serum delivers all the radiance and smoothness of a micro-dermabrasion treatment. The effective pH 3.7 insures almost immediate, visible results. Exfoliates dead cells, allowing healthier more radiant skin to emerge. Diminishes fines lines &a,p; wrinkles. Improves skin's firmness, tone & texture. Immediately reveals a more radiant, glowing complexion and softer, smoother, more healthy-looking skin. Use morning and evening or as needed.


Water, Glycolic Acid, Ammonium Hydroxide, Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, Matricaria Extract, Green Tea Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Aloe Baradensis Juice, Wheatgemamidopropyldimonium Hydroxypropyl Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Cellulose Gum, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate.

Brand Overview

Alpha Hydrox At-A-Glance

Strengths: A good selection of well-priced, effective AHA products utilizing glycolic acid; also excels with skin-lightening and retinol products; a small but workable selection of cleansers.

Weaknesses:A couple of moisturizers with oxygenating ingredients; reliance on jar packaging for some products with antioxidants.

Known primarily for their well-formulated AHA products, Alpha Hydrox got an impressive image update recently. Although the improvements were more visual and packaging-related than formulary-driven, the fact remains that Alpha Hydrox has a formidable range of effective AHA products, all with definitively researched glycolic acid. Kudos to the company for continuing to be direct about the AHA content (and pH) of their exfoliants, something most other lines selling AHA products prefer to keep a mystery. Should the folks behind this brand choose to go back to the drawing board once again, they would do well to reconsider their current jar packaging if they intend to keep adding antioxidants and other beneficial ingredients to their efficacious but still predominantly basic products. Until then, you can rely on Alpha Hydrox for supplying AHA products that really work, and a few other surprises too, all affordably priced and readily available.

For more information about Alpha Hydrox, call 1-800-447-1919 or visit www.alphahydrox.com.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!

The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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Great product at a great price

I ordered this product based on Paula's review and have been extremely satisfied. Within the first week of using it, I was getting compliments on my skin. It does the job. While the bottle is small, you don't use a lot and at less than $20, it's worth it. I'll continue to use it!

Reviewed by
Susie B
Inexpensive yet very effective

I have skin that flakes easily, so I must admit to using four drops of this serum every day and my skin looks very good. Also, after about a year of use, I no longer need a monthly facial - quarterly will do just fine. I love this product - and the price.

Reviewed by
Judy T
Change of preservative?

It seems that Alpha Hydrox has changed its preservative in this product to iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, a much better choice. Great product, great value!

Reviewed by
Beautypedia Team Response

Thanks for the information on the reformulation! We will be posting an updated review on this product in the very near future.

—Paula's Choice Research Team
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