Acid Toners and Acid Exfoliation Products: An AHA Comparison Spreadsheet

Click Here –> AHA Product Comparison Spreadsheet

Clicking on the link above will open up the complete Excel spreadsheet that I will update as I receive more information from companies, or tips from you all!

If you want to filter the data, you will need to click on “Data” –> “Filter views”–> “Create a temporary filter view”

*Currently, it has 88 AHAs with information on the pH, concentration, free acid value, and cost per ounce*

Important Things to Note:

  1. This spreadsheet is meant to be a starting point to show that there are different products at various price points and strengths. This ONLY focuses on the percent of the featured AHA. It is important to also look at the complete ingredient list as some products might include other ingredients that could help reduce irritation, increase irritation, or provide additional benefits other than exfoliation.
  2. When companies listed a range of pH values, I went with the high end of the range.
  3. In products with blends, the pKa for the first acid listed in the ingredient list was used to calculate the free acid value. Therefore, the % free acid is a rough estimate for acid blends.
  4. A percentage may be listed in the name of the product, but that doesn’t indicate it’s free acid value. I left those percentages in so that you could find the correct product as some names only change in terms of percent acid (e.g., Garden of Wisdom Mandelic Acid 15% vs. Garden of Wisdom Mandelic Acid %10 Serum).
  5. It is helpful to look at the total acid percentage in addition to the free acid percentage. A larger overall acid percentage (found under the “total acid percentage” will have a buffering effect thanks to equilibrium).
    • Two products with the same total acid percentage but different free acid percentages could give more similar results than two products with different total acid percentages but the same free acid percentage. (Thanks to @Labmuffinbeautyscience for pointing this out!)
  6. If formula’s change, the pH may change as well. Also, some countries may have slightly different formulations, so it is always beneficial to pH test your own products.  For some pH strips and meters see this post.

pH value color key:

  • Red = value provided by company
  • Blue = value provided by Beautypedia
  • Green = value provided by bloggers/reddit
  • Purple = value provided by my own pH meter

10 thoughts on “Acid Toners and Acid Exfoliation Products: An AHA Comparison Spreadsheet

  1. Hi thanks for sharing this! since these AHA toners are low PH, should you still use a PH adjusting toner before hand/ can these be used instead of a PH adjusting toner? Thanks so much!


  2. Thank you Vanessa for this amazing resource! I am a HUGE fan of yours on IG. Wondering if you can add Neogen Lemon Peel Pads and the Ole Hendriksen Invigorating Night Transformation Gel to the list? They both seem pretty ineffective after several months of testing so I am guessing low %.

    Thanks again for everything you do for us sciency/ocd nerds who want to quantify everything. You’re a girl after my own heart!

    Maya (@30sinmyskin)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amazing post. Which is better in your opinion, Sunday riley good genes or drunk elephant tlc fambroos . Both are expensive so I want to know which one is a good investment. Thanks for the help. Xo


  4. Pingback: THE ORDINARY – a review of 13 products | moonrise dreamer

  5. Thanks so much! I’ve been using the Lac-Luronic Serum and wanted to find something a little stronger to try next and this is perfect! All my thanks!


  6. Pingback: Top 20 Favorite Amazon Finds | Goals To Get Glowing

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