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The Only Exfoliator I Trust To Brighten My Skin Without Leaving Me Beet-Red

But let’s dive into the ingredient list, shall we? The formula includes a bouquet of fruit AHAs, derived from apple, grapefruit, orange, lemon, lime, hawthorn, and jujube fruit extracts. These gently increase cell turnover and smooth skin texture, but AHAs can also help improve moisture content of the skin, since they are hydrophilic (or water-loving). And while the AHA category falls on a spectrum of sorts, with some more potent than others (example: Glycolic acid has a smaller molecular weight, so it penetrates more easily into the skin), these fruit-derived exfoliants are far more gentle. Meaning, I can reap all of the immediately gratifying benefits with none of the irritation.

If even those super-gentle fruit AHAs give you pause, the formula also features Japanese mugwort, a botanical known for calming down redness. Then to further balance oil production, there’s wild rose extract plus niacinamide (one of my all-time favorite skin care ingredients), which also works to visibly brighten tone and fade hyperpigmentation.

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