After the original was pulled from shelves earlier in the year due to its lactic acid content, it’s been reformulated with glycolic acid so that it can return to UK shores

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It’s been a month of ups and downs for Sunday Riley. While the brand made headlines for all the wrong reasons a few weeks ago for allegedly posting fake reviews online, now they’re back to making them for the right ones again thanks to the return of a cult product - their Good Genes exfoliating acid serum .

If you loved the original though, bear in mind that version 2.0 hasn’t come back in its previous Helen Mirren -loving form (she was reportedly a fan along with Stella McCartney and Jourdan Dunn). Lactic acid has been replaced with glycolic acid  as its pore-clogging exfoliator of choice, in order to support a UK and EU restriction put in place by the Scientific Committee of Consumer Safety law. It states that finished products must have a pH level greater than 5.

It’s important to note though that it’s been reformulated to ensure that it provides the same glow-boosting benefits as before. Glycolic acid and lactic acid are widely considered to be the best types of alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) around when it comes to tackling concerns such as dullness, sun damage  and congestion. Glycolic acid is made up of tinier molecules though, and so therefore, penetrates deeper into the layers of the skin. This could lead to fast results but it may be aggravating for some.

However, the mechanisms by which they work are very similar. Both help break down the upper layer of the skin in order to slough off dead cells and encourage cell renewal to leave your complexion more even-toned and hydrated. They tend to work best for those with normal to dry skin types. If you have sensitive skin  though, take care, and make sure to patch test first.

Other core ingredients include potassium lactate, an exfoliating, moisture-boosting lactic acid salt; fermented prickly pear to reduce glycolic acid-related irritation, and clarifying lemongrass extract. Texture-wise, it’s almost lotion-like and fast-absorbing too. One or two pumps is recommended and it can be used morning or night (although personally, I’d use it at night when I’m not running the risk of sun exposure).

A comeback story with a twist, it’ll be interesting to see how it’s received by its original fan base.

Buy Sunday Riley Good Genes Glycolic Acid Treatment, £85, online here .

Read more: A guide to using exfoliating acids in your skincare routine.

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