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Dr. Dennis Gross Extra Strength Alpha Beta Peels

by Dr. Dennis Gross

Dr. Dennis Gross Extra Strength Alpha Beta Peels
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$ 88.00
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Quantity: 30 Treatment Packets

Dr. Dennis Gross' Alpha Beta Extra Strength Daily Peel is a stronger version of renowned dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross' original daily peel, ideal for those whose complexion needs extra attention. Especially made for normal, competent skin, this at-home peel exfoliates and reveals your natural radiance. A special blend of seven acids works to reduce fine lines and wrinkles and minimize pore size without any recovery time. This powerful formula is perfect for those with problematic skin looking for accelerated results.

So how does Dr. Dennis Gross' 2-step system work? Step 1 is packed with exfoliating alpha and beta hydroxy acids designed to boost your skin's natural cell turnover; follow it up with Step 2 to neutralize the acids and deliver anti-aging actives like retinol and Ubiquinone. Plus, you can use this product with pride because it is cruelty and paraben-free.

Tested for 30 days and approved by Sandy:
I am a Caucasian woman with red hair and freckles and am now in my early fifties. I have some minor sun damage and some unevenness of skin tone due to general sun exposure over the years. My skin is combination and not overly sensitive.

For a number of years, I used Dr. Gross’ Original Alpha Beta Daily Peel for the face and the Alpha Beta Glow body pads and I was very impressed with the results. When asked to review his Alpha Beta Extra Strength Daily Peel pads, I was interested to see what the difference was between it and the original.

Like the Original Peel, now called “Universal” on Dr. Gross’ website, the Extra Strength pads are used to improve the appearance of uneven skin tone and texture and to address fine lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores. Step one of the Extra Strength version uses the same five alpha and beta hydroxy acids used in the Universal formula — lactic acid, malic acid, glycolic acid, citric acid and salicylic acid — but adds two more: mandelic acid and willow bark extract, which is another source of salicylic acid.

Marta’s review for the Original (Universal) Alpha Beta Daily Peel very competently explains what the shared five AHAs do. I’ll address the additional two acids. Mandelic (German for “almond”) acid is an extract of bitter almonds and derived by hydrolysis. It is used for treating acne, sun damage, and uneven skin tone. Willow bark extract contains salicylic acid, which has anti-inflammatory effects, increases skin cell turnover, and prevents pore clogging.

I will point out that the second ingredient in step one is denatured alcohol (SD Alcohol 40-B). Denatured alcohol contains ethanol, used to speed up drying time, among other things. It can dissolve surface oils quickly, which can cause irritation in sensitive skin. But, as I said, I personally did not experience any irritation.

The second ingredient in step two is sodium bicarbonate (water is the first ingredient in both steps), also known as baking soda. It is an alkaline and is used to neutralize the acids in step one and re-balance the skin’s pH level. Step two also contains several antioxidants, such as resveratrol, retinol (vitamin A) and retinyl palmitate (ester of retinol), ascorbic acid (vitamin C), CoQ 10 enzyme and ascorbyl palmitate (ester of vitamin C). It also has phospholipids, necessary for cell membrane function to help stabilize the membrane and retain water in the cell.

As to the difference in who uses which version, the Universal or the Extra Strength, Dr. Gross’ website says the Universal is “perfect for those with normal skin looking for anti-aging benefits.” The Extra Strength version is “optimal for advanced skincare users looking for maximum anti-aging results.” Sounds like me.

Just like the Universal Peel, the Extra Strength pads are a two-part process. The directions state to use the pads once a day, morning or evening, on clean, dry skin and to apply in circular motions until the pad feels dry. Step one is not to be rinsed off but, instead, you wait two minutes and then apply step two in the same manner.

I used step one on my face, neck, and chest area, as well, as the back of my neck and on and behind my ears. I like to wipe it right up into my hairline and through my eyebrows. The two minute wait time between steps is exactly how long my Sonicare electric toothbrush runs, so I apply step two after my toothbrush stops.

I personally do not feel any irritation with this product. It does feel drying, however, so I follow-up with some kind of moisturizer if before bed or my daily serums and creams if in the morning. I especially like the texture of my skin from using this product. Very smooth and very soft. I believe I would need to use it for longer than just one month to see significant visible change in sun damage and unevenness of my skin tone, but I think that’s the idea anyway. I also did not notice any particular scent.

I like that the pads come sealed separately but are still attached to each other; you aren’t as apt to forget to use the second step. I also like these pouches because they are easily portable with little bulk and no risk of leaking or contamination. I can take as many as I actually need when I travel, rather than put a full-size jar in my toiletry case.

The cost for a 30-day supply is $88.00, roughly $2.93 per two-pouch packet. It’s a little on the mid-high range, for me, at least, although it is worth it.

I like this product; I like it a lot. I liked the Universal/Original Peel a lot and I like this Extra Strength a lot, maybe better. I have “very competent skin” (an aesthetician once told me) and I think, with time, the Extra Strength would help with skin tone. Also, as a daily regimen for maintaining a high-level of skincare, it makes subsequent facials and special treatments more effective, I think, if they don’t have to struggle to correct a concern that this peel also addresses. That’s a completely emotional statement, attached to my attempt to be objective in my review, so make of it what you will.

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  • Benefits:
    boosts collagen production, easy-to-use packaging, evens skin tone, fights acne, freshens dull skin, non-greasy, paraben-free, reduces fine lines, reduces hyperpigmentation, reduces wrinkles, shrinks pores, smoothes skin, tightens skin, vegan

Your Take...

  • 5 stars 5 out of 5

    I was given a hefty set of these by Sephora to try as an alternative to gritty exfoliators which can injure skin if not perfectly round.

    They are very easy to use and are not as harsh as the 10% glycolic acid pads by ASDM (which are perhaps too effective and very reasonably priced). The "extra strength" has additional acids in it but is not more harsh.

    You tear off one easy to open pouch and use the moistened towelette inside for the acid step. Wait one minute and use the neutralizer in the second pouch which also has a number of anti-aging ingredients such as Resveratrol, Retinol, Ascorbic Acid, and Copper PCA.

    The effects are brighter skin and it is very easy to use. Also have the convenience and travel factor with the sealed pouches.

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Step 1: Water/Aqua/Eau, Alcohol Denat. (SD Alcohol 40-B), Glycolic Acid, Potassium Hydroxide, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Salicylic Acid, Polysorbate 20, Lactic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Malic Acid, Citric Acid, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Menthone Glycerin Acetal, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Achillea Millefolium Extract, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile) Flower Extract, Soy Isoflavones, Copper PCA, Zinc PCA, Lecithin, Disodium EDTA, Alcohol, Polysorbate 80, Fragrance (Parfum), Linalool, Benzyl Salicylate, Benzoic Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Benzoate

Step 2: Water/Aqua/Eau, Sodium Bicarbonate, Resveratrol, Retinol, Ascorbic Acid, Ubiquinone, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Phospholipids, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Soy Isoflavones, Achillea Millefolium Extract , Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Copper PCA, Sodium PCA, Zinc PCA, Dimethicone, Lecithin, Polysorbate 20, Polysorbate 80, Alcohol, BHT, PEG-30 Stearate, Octoxynol-9, Tetrasodium EDTA, Sorbic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol
Once a day, apply step 1 pad to clean, dry skin, using circular motions. Continue application until pad feels dry. Wait two minutes. Follow with pad in step 2 using the same technique as step 1. Do not rinse after either step or use products containing alcohol. Morning or night use. Avoid contact with eyes. Make sure to use sunscreen daily to help prevent photo-aging.
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