Review: Good Molecules – Glycolic Exfoliating Toner

Where to purchase: Available on the Good Molecules Website HERE

Price: £10.16

Volume: 120ml

Made in: South Korea

What is it + What does it do: A watery, Glycolic Acid Toner that helps exfoliate the skin + promote an even tone and texture.

Note: This is meant to be a gentler Glycolic Acid Exfoliating Toner compared to the Ordinary’s Glycolic Acid Toner 7%, therefore more open to Sensitive Skins. (However a lower % means it takes longer to get the same results, which I’m ok with as I wouldn’t like to bombard my skin with high % acids too often).

Supposedly Good for: All Skin Types

What I think: I think Oily + Dry Skins could use this, but I think Sensitive Skins could use this BUT would still require spacing out use i.e. I would not recommend sensitive skins use this every day (i.e. every other day or 2 days in between), just to be on the safe side. My skin is pretty sensitive to Glycolic acid and I space this out every other day.

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Vegan?: Yes

Cruelty Free?: Yes

pH: 4.2 (Acidic – so this will sting sensitised skins / those with a compromised skin barrier).

Packaging: Glass bottle with a Plastic Screw Top Lid and inside there’s a plastic safety hole so you don’t pour out too much product (I’m still able to pour out a good amount however).

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Directions: Use 3-5x a week in the PM (And you can increase gradually to single daily use if you want to get the full effects).

Note: Do not use with other Chemical / Physical Exfoliants or Retinol

  • This can be used in conjunction with the BHA Cream (Pictured Below) if required for extra pore + Blemish care (Which is what I did every other day).
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How I use it: I use this every other day in the PM (I worked up from 2-3 times a week). My skin is sensitive to Glycolic Acid so I can’t use this daily. I swipe the face with a pad and concentrate on the areas with larger pores / Blemishes. It doesn’t take long for this to dry down so I can move onto the next step of skincare quite briskly.

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Key Ingredients: 3.5% Glycolic Acid (an AHA that exfoliates the skin and improves skin tone + texture), 0.9% Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate (This also helps exfoliate the skin gently). 0.2% Salicylic Acid (a BHA – Pore Unclogging and helps with blackheads). 0.1% Niacinamide (also helps with skin tone + Pigmentation). 3 Forms of Hyaluronic Acid (Small, Medium and Large to both sit on top of and within the skin to provide hydration). This also contains Aloe Leaf Extract + Chrysanthemum Leaf Extract which are soothing.

Full Ingredients: Water – 79.0%, Dipropylene Glycol – 5.0%, Glycolic Acid – 3.5%, Propanediol – 3.5%, Sodium Citrate – 3.0%, 1,2 – Hexanediol – 2.0%, Glycerin – 1.5%, Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate – 0.9%, Butylene Glycol – 0.5%, Salicylic Acid – 0.2%, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract – 0.1%, Pentylene Glycol – 0.1%, Niacinamide – 0.1%, Tricholoma Matsutake Extract – 0.1%, Ethylhexylglycerin – 0.05%, Hydrolyzed Cicer Seed Extract – 0.04%, Rhododendron Chrysanthemum Leaf Extract – 0.04%, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate – 0.02%, Sodium Hyaluronate – 60 ppm, Hyaluronic Acid – 50 ppm, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid – 50 ppm

NOTE: The Incidecoder have a full ingredient breakdown HERE

  • I like that this contains 3 forms of HA (instead of just 1) as it provides hydration to the skin (not just a stripping toner). I also like the addition of Galactomyces to provide the skin with some gentle resurfacing, and the addition of BHA is great for me as I require some pore care (I’ve been using the Geek & Gorgeous Cheer Up Exfoliating Liquid for this), so I got 2 for the price of one!

Texture: Literally a watery, lightweight texture that runs down the hand. It doesn’t ball up and isn’t sticky / tacky. It’s not a thick toner. This does sting if the skin is sensitised or if you’ve overdone it on the retinol. Definitely layerable too. Upon rubbing in, this feels hydrating and tingles slightly, especially if it’s the first time using this.

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Hopefully you can see how watery and lightweight this is.

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Texture Swatch Video:

As you can see from the video – the texture of this is exactly like water. This is lightweight so that’s why I think oily, oily-combo and those living in hot and humid weathers would really enjoy it, but of course dry skins could use this too.

Fragrance?: No added fragrance and/or essential oils. This smells of nothing in particular.

Good Under Makeup?: Yes, as this has a watery texture.

How long have I been using this?: 3 Months (Still haven’t finished).

The Effect?: Helps keep my pores in check, reveal smoother skin and a better tone. This also helps brighten scars and also helps with blemishes which the addition of BHA helps with as well.

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What I like:

  • Watery, Lightweight Texture
  • Layerable
  • Fragrance + EO Free
  • I like that this contains added Skin-Beneficial Ingredients (not just Glycolic Acid) i.e. Salicylic Acid, Niacinamide, Hyaluronic Acid (3 Types) + Galactomyces Ferment (Cocktail of skin-beneficial actives while also at a low % to be more gentle and catering to more sensitive skins
  • Hydrating (Doesn’t just dry out the skin)

What I don’t like:

  • Still need to space out use of this (I couldn’t use this every day as my skin is too sensitive to Glycolic Acid)
  • Stings (obviously) if the skin is sensitised (due to the acid + lower pH)
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Overall Rating and Conclusion: 4/5 – This is a great cocktail of Pore care + Skin retexturising ingredients that are at a low enough % that more sensitive skins can try to use this without overhelming the skin with high % acids + actives.

  • This definitely has helped my skin improve in overall texture and appearance. Now, Is this the most gentle exfoliating toner I’ve used? No (I think the G&G Cheer up Toner is more gentle BUT it’s also takes longer to see results)- BUT my skin is rather sensitive to Glycolic acid and amongst all the Glycolic Acid Toners I’ve tried (especially TO Glycolic Acid Toner 7% and The Inkey List Glycolic Acid Toner (contains alcohol), this has definitely been the most gentle – and unlike the other Glycolic Toners, this contains added skincare beneficial ingredients which I really appreciate, as it means that other ingredients (like Niacinamide + HA + Galactomyces Ferment) work to hydrate + retexturise the skin. But I definitely need to spread out use of this and not overdo it.

Would I repurchase?: Yes as I find this gentle enough to use on my face which, out of the other Glycolic Acid Toners (I.e. The Ordinary Glycolic Acid Toner + The Inkey List’s Glycolic Acid Toner), I can use this on my face without irritation (as long as I space out uses). I like that this doesn’t ball up (I find that a lot of toners do) so it means it doesn’t get in the way with my routine or makeup routine, and that this has extra ingredients instead of just Glycolic Acid.

Dupe?: An even gentler product containing Mandelic Acid (Gentler form of AHA) is the Geek & Gorgeous Cheer Up Exfoliating Liquid (Review HERE). I haven’t found a good dupe of this yet which contains both Glycolic acid and other skin-nourishing ingredients. However the Niacinamide Brightening Toner from Good Molecules (Review HERE) is also fab and even more gentle for intolerant skins as it doesn’t contain AHA.

My Skin Type: I am acne prone and have slightly dehydrated combo skin. My skin is usually tight where the cheeks and eye area is and the outer parts of my face. My T zone is oily. My skin isn’t a fan of thick/heavy formulas so I opt for lightweight formulas to prevent it from clogging up. My skin doesn’t like essential oils either and I try to avoid fragrance when I can.

Disclaimer: I am a skincare enthusiast and not a skin expert. I am not qualified to give out dermatological advice. This type of advice should only be given by a medical practitioner. Upon trying / using any of the reviewed products on the blog, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions and warnings and please seek medical advice if needed.

Note: I earn a small commission when you purchase through affiliate links, which helps me purchase products for review + also help improve the Blog! If you would like to support me, thank you ever so much! and if not, that’s fine – I hope you enjoy my posts! 

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