Glycolic Acid / Salicylic Acid / Lactic Acid Face Pads


Glycolic Acid / Salicylic Acid / Lactic Acid Face Pads are a combination of chemical exfoliants that have been formulated into a solution and are dispensed as saturated cloth pads. The active ingredients act to exfoliate the skin, resulting in oil and dead skin cell removal as well as increased cell turnover (peeling). The continued use of this formula may prevent the formation of new blemishes, result in visually smaller pores, and clearer healthy skin.

Glycolic Acid

Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) naturally found in sugar that penetrates the skin to break down sebum and exfoliate skin cells. When applied to the skin, glycolic acid works to break the bonds between the outer layer of skin cells, including dead skin cells, and the next skin cell layer. This creates a peeling effect that can make the skin appear smoother and more even over time. Glycolic acid, especially the use of higher concentrations (10% or more), can cause skin irritation, itching, swelling, and sun sensitivity. Using lower concentrations can reduce the propensity of these common adverse effects.1

Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that exfoliates skin and can improve its texture and color. It also helps with acne and acne scarring. Salicylic acid works by softening keratin, a protein that forms part of the skin structure. This helps to loosen dry scaly skin making it easier to remove. Side effects to salicylic acid are generally limited to mild local irritation.2, 3

Lactic Acid

Lactic Acid is another alpha hydroxy acid that acts similarly to glycolic acid. Because of its larger molecular structure, it may not penetrate the skin as deeply as glycolic acid. One advantage of this feature, though, is that lactic acid is generally less irritating than glycolic acid.1



How Supplied

Patients that would benefit from the administration of this preparation may opt for this compounded preparation as determined by a prescriber. Common formulations prepared at Galleria Medical Pharmacy include but are not limited to:

 Glycolic Acid 1% / Salicylic Acid 1% / Lactic Acid 3% Saturated Face Pads (for daily use)

 Glycolic Acid 2% / Salicylic Acid 2% / Lactic Acid 4% Saturated Face Pads (for weekly use)


Store this medication at 68°F to 77°F (20°C to 25°C) and away from heat, moisture and light. Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Throw away any unused medicine after the beyond use date. Do not flush unused medications or pour down a sink or drain.


  1. Sheau-Chung Tang, Jen-Hung Yang. Dual Effects of Alpha-Hydroxy Acids on the Skin. Molecules. 2018 Apr; 23(4): 863.
  2. Zander E, Weisman S. Treatment of acne vulgaris with salicylic acid pads. Clin Ther. Mar-Apr 1992;14(2):247-53.
  3. Tasleem Arif. Salicylic acid as a peeling agent: a comprehensive review. Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol. 2015; 8: 455–461.

Compounding Pharmacy Statement

This preparation is compounded with drug components whose suppliers are registered with the FDA. While Galleria Medical Pharmacy adheres to USP <795> guidelines and applicable state and federal regulations to meet the required quality standards, the statements made regarding this preparation have not been evaluated by the FDA for safety or clinical effectiveness. As such, this preparation is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. For inquiries concerning this preparation, please contact (504) 267-9876.