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How to Make a Glycolic Acid Peel at Home for Clearer Skin in 5 minutes

Glycolic Acid Peel at Home

Glycolic acid can be used in many daily skincare products to brighten and smooth our skin texture. You’ll find it frequently listed as an ingredient in exfoliating products, which you may already be using for step 3 of your Korean skincare routine.

But buying exfoliating products on the regular is going to be outright expensive. That’s why we’ll show how to make your own glycolic acid peel at home using cane sugar and other natural ingredients you probably already have sitting in your cupboards.

That’s right, cane sugar contains glycolic acid. When mixed in with lemon juice, you’ll have created an effective peel as your skin will be better able to absorb it.


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What is a Glycolic Acid Peel?

An at-home glycolic acid peel is slightly acidic so it can be applied topically on the skin to remove dead cells. This facial peel penetrates the upper layers of the dermis to help unclog pores that have become filled with oil and debris to encourage brighter, younger-looking skin. Find out all the ins and outs about glycolic acid peels in our guide

To make a chemical peel at home of the glycolic acid variety, you simply need cane sugar, which contains glycolic acid and lemon juice. Lemon juice is a natural source of Vitamin C that helps lighten dark spots and even out skin tone.

Cane sugar is a natural exfoliate and a natural source of glycolic acid which is known to improve overall skin texture by exfoliating off dead skin.

If you’re wanting to find something to brighten your skin texture that doesn’t break the bank, then keep reading because making a glycolic acid chemical peel at home helps immensely!

Note: This is a very mild peel, so it should be safe enough to do on a bi-weekly basis!



It’s safer to stop using other actives and any prescription skincare products (ie. acne medication) during the same day you’re using a chemical peel. This way you’ll take the most preventive approach when it comes to skin irritation.

If you’re interested in a more detailed rundown of the ins and outs of applying a glycolic chemical peel to your skin, here’s a guide – “How to use Glycolic Acid in Ways That Don’t Damage Your Skin”.


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How to Make Natural Glycolic Acid Peel at Home


Prep Time:

5 minutes


What You Need:

  • 1/4 cup white cane sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • Spoon
  • Bowl
  • Facial moisturizer



Step 1: Put the cane sugar into a mixing bowl.

Step 2: Pour in the lemon juice and stir until the mixture forms a paste. Lemon juice has citric acid, another type of alpha hydroxy acid, so mixing it with cane sugar makes the peel more effective. That’s it! You’re ready to apply it to your face.

Step 3: Use your fingertips to gently apply the paste evenly over your face by using small, circular motions. Start at the nose and move out toward the hairline, avoiding the eyes.

Step 4: Let the peel sit for 10 minutes. For more details, again, check out this article

Step 5: Rinse off thoroughly with lukewarm water to slowly neutralize the acid.

Step 6: Apply a facial moisturizer to protect skin from glycolic acid’s slightly drying effects.

Step 7: When going out, apply sunscreen every day, rain or shine!


Making a Glycolic Acid Peel at Home 

How easy was that? From now on you can make your Glycolic acid peel at home and save it in the refrigerator. Make sure you wear sunscreen on top of your daily moisturizer to protect skin from sun damage now that it’s feeling a little sensitive after exfoliation.

Serious or recurring acne or hyperpigmentation, however, should be treated by a dermatologist.

We hope you see the results like we did!

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