The Ordinary burst onto the scene with super wallet-friendly (if somewhat intimidating) skincare products, including The Ordinary Peeling Solution. Và it’s this week’s “Chosen One.”


A few weeks before I turned 30 last year, someone asked me if I was looking forward khổng lồ it. I was indeed, I told her, but mostly, I was looking forward khổng lồ being done with puberty.

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Alas, on the morning of my 30th and every morning thereafter, I’d still wake up with very tiny pouches of dead white blood cells & bacteria on my face, trying lớn say ‘sup lớn the outside world. I don’t have terribly problematic skin, though I’d have significantly fewer problems if I wasn’t addicted to popping zits. But hey, that’s another story for another therapy session.

When a makeup artist recently suggested that I might want khổng lồ try a chemical peel khổng lồ get rid of the little bumps smattering my cheeks, I gave it a good think.

On the one hand, I’m a weirdo (among many) that derives pleasure from popping pimples. On the other, I’ve long dreamt of the day I can use Glossier products without piling a bunch of heavier shit on top, so that when I get khổng lồ finally tag a selfie with #nomakeupjustglossier, I’m keeping it 100.

I decided to give an at-home chemical peel a whirl, using The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution. & I went ahead and bought it within about two minutes, because it costs $7.20.


Source: ASOS

Upon doing some further research, I learned that the brand—which falls under the parent company Deceim—offers up an impressive range of skincare products based on the idea that what they sell is “familiar, effective clinical technologies positioned lớn raise pricing và communication integrity in skincare.”

In other words, they believe the skincare industry is ripping everyone off, because chemicals are chemicals và everyone is more or less using the same tool kit. And they’re trying to remedy that by offering up “clinical formulations with integrity” at a minimal markup. This includes The Ordinary Peeling Solution.

So what’s the verdict after about a month of use, twice a week? *drum roll* It’s totally worth the $7.20 and then some. There’s been a noticeable reduction in the area that’s always given me the most grief—along và above my jawbone after using The Ordinary Peeling Solution.

I’m using a few of their other products as well (that might be helping the overall situation,) và one of the big things I’ve noticed is that it seems khổng lồ somehow…tighten up the zits. Those messy, nebulous, will-they-or-won’t-they underground bombs are no more. When zits have stuck around, they’re more of that solid, waxy variety that are fairly easy (if less satisfying) to lớn extract.

From the official description:

Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHA) exfoliate the skin’s topmost surface for a brighter và more even appearance. Beta hydroxyl acids (BHA) also exfoliate the skin with an extended function khổng lồ help clear pore congestion. This combined 32% AHA/BHA solution offers deeper exfoliation to lớn help fight visible blemishes & for improved skin radiance. The formula also improves the appearance of skin texture and reduces the look of fine lines with continued use.

The site also goes on to lớn warn that this is probably only a good idea if you’re an “experienced user of acid exfoliation,” which I am decidedly not, but I lượt thích to live life on the edge, I guess. I also don’t have particularly sensitive skin, though, so I would imagine this could indeed be a whole risky ordeal for those more prone lớn irritation or peeling.

Overall, though, at an accessible price point, The Ordinary opens up all sorts of possibilities for those looking to develop a custom skincare regimen. Và word lớn the wise: People are starting lớn catch on quick.

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The Ordinary Peeling Solution is currently sold on ASOS for $10.00 with miễn phí shipping and it’s priced at $14.21 on Amazon, but you can order it direct from Deciem if you’re willing khổng lồ withstand a processing delay, due lớn high demand.

The product descriptions are full of technical information (which can actually be kind of intimidating,) so if you’re feeling a little unsure, check out this starter kit video.

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Mara Leighton/

After washing it off, my pale combination skin stays red for probably 15 minutes. After that, my complexion becomes noticeably softer, smoother, và tighter. The next day, my skin tone also looks a little more even & surface scars from past acne seem a bit less severe.

With prolonged use, my complexion continually got smoother and more even, & I think my pores look a little smaller now. I also think it helped keep acne at bay, though I"ve also found retinol products lượt thích Differin are even more effective for my skin"s clarity.

How AHAs and BHAs work

Alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) works by breaking down the glue holding your skin cells together, urging along the skin"s natural shedding process. The effects of AHAs are primarily on the skin"s surface, so they"re good at combatting concerns lượt thích red marks from past acne and hyperpigmentation.

BHAs are good for skin concerns lượt thích blackheads và whiteheads because BHAs penetrate deeper into the skin. While AHAs love water, BHAs love oil. They can bypass the oil that clogs pores and dissolve the mix of sebum & dead skin that leads khổng lồ acne, as well as help stabilize the lining of the pore (which contributes to acne). You can learn more here.

Using both is a great one-two punch for dark spots, uneven or rough texture, và clogged pores. The sloughing away of dull, dead skin cells also helps facilitate new skin cells that look brighter, tighter, and healthier.

Cons khổng lồ consider

My combination skin is somewhat sensitive, and I didn"t find this facial lớn be too harsh. But, that may not be the case for everyone. If you"re able, it"s a good idea to run new products by your dermatologist before trying them. If you"re looking for a different version, you can find a few different AHA & BHA options to lớn consider here — though you"ll likely pay more.

I"d also be careful khổng lồ only use this for its recommended 10 minutes once or twice per week. And, since it"s a powerful exfoliant, you"ll want to lớn use sunscreen when you go outside to lớn combat any photosensitivity.

The bottom line

The AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution is a cheap, powerful exfoliant that sloughs away dull skin cells và reveals a smoother, more evenly toned complexion. With regular use, I saw a noticeable improvement in my skin"s tone và texture và also some improvements in clarity. While my skin did seem tighter, I"d recommend spending your money on retinol products first if your main skin concerns are related lớn wrinkles. Và if your skin is especially sensitive, you may want khổng lồ ask your dermatologist about using this mask first.

Overall, it"s fun khổng lồ use, effective at smoothing & evening my complexion, và while it may be one of the cheapest products in my bathroom cabinet, it performs lượt thích something more expensive.