How to Incorporate Glycolic Acid and Niacinamide Into Your Skincare Routine

Finding skincare that truly makes a big difference in how your skin looks and feels can be a game changer. With so many ingredients out there though, it can be hard to pinpoint just the right ones that will take your skin from “meh” to “amazing”. Skin that glows. At Cosmedica Skincare, our goal is to create affordable skincare products with active ingredients that are going to get the job done for any skin type. Two of those ingredients that are definitely game changers are glycolic acid and niacinamide. More than likely, you’ve heard of both, but may not quite know how to incorporate each into your skincare routine in the most effective way. Let’s look at these two powerful ingredients to discover how they can both benefit your skin, and the best ways to work them into your skincare routine. 

Glycolic Acid


Glycolic acid is a common substance found in skincare that is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) or hydroxyacetic acid that comes from sugar cane. It’s highly soluble in water, making it easy to dissolve, working in many different skincare products, like cleansers, serums, and moisturizers. 

It’s been used for so long in skincare, since it was discovered back in 1848 by a French chemist named Auguste Laurent. He came up with the compounds that make up glycolic acid, but it wasn’t until other chemists around the world produced it synthetically that it caught on for use in skincare. The reason glycolic acid works so well in skincare is that the molecules of the acid are very small and easily able to penetrate the skin. 

There are other types of AHAs that are used in skincare as well. That includes citric acid, which comes from fruit-based sources, malic acid which comes from apples, and lactic acid from milk sources. It’s still glycolic acid that you’ll probably hear most about in skincare because of the many benefits it can bring to your skin. 

In looking at the properties of glycolic acid and what it can do, it makes sense that it works so well in skincare. Glycolic acid, as we said before, is an exfoliant, but it can also act as a humectant that attracts and connects moisture to skin cells by bringing water into the skin, improving the skin barrier. There are also antibacterial properties that can help keep the skin healthy by preventing bacterial growth. So, overall, glycolic acid is one of the most beneficial ingredients in skincare today.  

Benefits of Glycolic Acid for Skincare

The benefits of glycolic acid for skincare mainly have to do with natural exfoliation. The way glycolic acid works is as a gentle sugar-based chemical exfoliant, to help shed dead skin cells and reveal newer, bright, and more even skin. By loosening the bonds of all that old skin, it helps all other products penetrate the new skin for better benefits. It can even help to stimulate collagen production in the skin for the appearance of fewer fine lines and wrinkles. The skin will feel firmer and more plumped up, resilient against visible signs of aging. Here are some additional benefits:

  • Reduces acne problems
  • Improves UV damage 
  • Fades hyperpigmentation
  • Increases skin’s hyaluronic acid  
  • Promotes elasticity in skin's protective barrier
  • Helps skin repair and regeneration 


Niacinamide is a type of vitamin B-3. That means it’s found in all kinds of foods, from whole grains to many different plants and vegetables. Synthetic forms are used mostly in skincare, like serums and moisturizers, because of the many benefits they can bring to your skincare routine. Plus, it’s a water-soluble vitamin, so it dissolves easily into different skincare formulations. It helps to build healthy proteins in the skin, has anti-inflammatory properties, and can even ward off environmental damage in the form of uneven skin tone, like dark spots.

It was discovered in the early 1930s by scientists and has been widely used in supplements and to treat various illnesses, including skin cancer and HIV. 

On a basic cosmetic level, as a potent antioxidant, ordinary niacinamide is great for aging skin and people with skin conditions like psoriasis and rosacea. But it really shines for those with acne problems, in prevention and treatment. Think of niacinamide as a deeper acting salicylic acid. It is truly a beneficial ingredient that has so many uses across a wide range of skin issues. 

Benefits of Niacinamide for Skincare


The main benefits of niacinamide for skincare have to do with the fact that it can bolster the skin’s general health even in sensitive skin, no matter what type of concerns you are experiencing. It builds beneficial proteins by locking moisture into the skin. This can help to prevent a host of damage to the skin, as it ages, by blocking free radicals from affecting the skin. The skin will be strong and healthy as a result of using products that contain niacinamide. Some of the other benefits include the following:

  • Helps retain moisture
  • Takes away redness and blotches
  • Makes pores appear smaller
  • Regulates oil production
  • Protects against UVA/UVB damage
  • Treats and prevents acne

Can You Use Glycolic Acid and Niacinamide Together?

The good news is that you can use both glycolic acid and niacinamide in your routine together for skin that is brighter, more even, and smooth as silk. Say good-bye to brown spots! You just have to be careful about when you use them in your routine to not overdo it. Each will make visible improvements in your skin that you’ll be able to see rather quickly. These are strong, but plant-based ingredients that have proved their efficacy time and time again in skincare.   

Cosmedica Skincare’s Glycolic Acid Product

The Cosmedica Skincare glycolic acid product that we offer is the 2.5 % Glycolic Facial Scrub. It’s a chemical and manual exfoliation scrub that contains a high level of ordinary glycolic acid to buff away dead skin cells when used two to three times per week. The goal of this product is to help diminish fine lines and uneven skin tone, but it can also help to nourish the skin with plant extracts and potent actives, like organic aloe vera.  

Cosmedica Skincare’s Niacinamide Product

The brand new niacinamide product that we offer at Cosmedica Skincare is the 10 % Niacinamide + Zinc Treatment Serum. This powerful serum is perfect for acne-prone skin, since it’s going to help to clear out clogged pores and control oil production. It works so well to improve all aspects of uneven skin tone by getting rid of old acne scars for more even skin. 

The way that you use it in your skincare routine is twice a day, morning and night, right after cleansing your skin. Pat two to three drops on the skin and gently rub in until absorbed. Then you can layer on your Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum and moisturizer. 

The only thing about using a niacinamide product is that you don’t want to use other serums that contain higher concentrations of retinol or vitamin C because it’s going to be too harsh on the skin. Keep in mind that niacinamide is safe to use the 2.5 % Glycolic Facial Scrub.  

How to Use Both Glycolic Acid and Niacinamide in Your Skincare Routine

As we said before, you can definitely use both the 2.5 % Glycolic Facial Scrub and the 10 % Niacinamide + Zinc Treatment Serum together in your routine. The facial scrub is used just two to three times per week, like most exfoliation scrubs. The niacinamide serum is used each day, twice a day with your skincare routine for the best results. Another serum that works well with glycolic acid and niacinamide is our Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum. This is a game changer in skincare to bind beneficial moisture to the skin and to help get rid of uneven skin tone. Uneven skin tone is one of the biggest complaints that we hear about at Cosmedica Skincare. It’s great that all of these products can work together to produce targeted results for a more beautiful and even visage. 

It’s also important to use a moisturizer after any exfoliation and daily with your serums. One of the best ones to try is the Super Nutrient Face Balm. The rich but gentle formula penetrates the skin for healthy skin cells and an improved complexion. To prevent more sun damage, always use an SPF daily in your skincare routine for the best results.

Have Questions About Skincare Ingredients?

If you have any questions about whether certain skincare ingredients work well together or need to be avoided, contact us. Our team of skincare experts at Cosmedica Skincare will make sure that you have the exact right skincare routine for your specific skin’s needs. After all, having beautiful skin that is glowing and even in tone shouldn’t be that hard when you have effective products to use, like the ones we offer at Cosmedica Skincare. 


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