AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid
COSRX’s AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid earns our top rating because its formulated to do exactly what it claims, thanks to effective amounts of its star ingredient.
Housed in a frosted plastic bottle with a pump dispenser, this leave-on exfoliant has a water-light texture that’s easy to apply with either a cotton pad or your fingers. It sinks into skin immediately. The non-sticky finish means it works well either over or under the other skin care products in your routine.
The star of the show here is 7% glycolic acid, one of the best-researched alpha hydroxy acids, and it’s at a pH of 3.77, meaning it’s within the optimal range (3-4) for exfoliation of occur. This amount of glycolic acid will help brighten skin tone as claimed, as well as help reduce the appearance of some signs of aging, including dark spots and fine lines.
The supporting players in this formula include antioxidant apple fruit water, hydrating butylene glycol, skin-plumping sodium hyaluronate, and skin-brightening niacinamide. Even better? This liquid is fragrance free.
If you’ve been wanting to check out one of K-Beauty’s biggest brands, this is one of the best products that COSRX has to offer.
*Note: Because this package is frosted and not opaque, it’s best to store it out of direct light to make sure its ingredients remain stable.
- Water-light formula sinks into skin immediately.
- Includes hydrating, skin-plumping, and brightening ingredients.
- Contains 7% glycolic acid formulated in the optimal pH range for exfoliation.
- Fragrance free.
- Packaged in a frosted bottle, so it must be stored out of direct light.
Formulated with 7% Glycolic Acid (AHA), AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid gently exfoliates skin and helps reveal a radiant even-toned complexion. AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid includes Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Water containing natural AHA and Glycolic Acid (AHA) that gently exfoliates and moisturizes skin. Other properties contained in this liquid are vitamins, and natural moisturizing ingredients that can refine without stimulating the skin. Using this helps to improve the appearance of the skin by looking it healthier and more vital. It is gentle enough on irritated and sensitive skin.
COSRX is one of a growing number of Korean beauty brands – a category known by many simply as K Beauty – that’s gaining a foothold in the Western cosmetics world. COSRX got its start in 2014, though it’s essentially an offspring of older “sister” brands, including C20 and Gatzmen, which have longer-standing histories in the Korean market. As the story goes, COSRX came about after the parent company compiled a decade’s worth of research based on customer data and beauty consumer research.
The brand name, as you might have guessed, is a mash-up of “cosmetics” and “RX” (for prescription), and illustrates COSRX’s overall philosophy. Whereas some other K-beauty brands are known for whimsical packaging and brightly-colored products, CosRX’s focus is minimalistic packaging and products designed to target specific skin care concerns, each highlighted by active ingredients.
To that end, the brand is largely successful. Most of the packaging is designed to protect light- and air-sensitive ingredients, though there are some jars in the mix. The formulas focus on active ingredients such as alpha hydroxy acids, hyaluronic acid, and beta hydroxy acid (though it should be noted, COSRX uses BHA derivatives, since salicylic acid’s use is restricted in Korea).
Most of the exfoliants are formulated at the optimal pH for exfoliation, which is between 3 and 4, and are fragrance free. Unfortunately there are some formulas that include natural ingredients that can potentially sensitize skin, including pine and cedar extracts, and anise fruit extract – proof once again that natural isn’t always better! Some products also contain drying alcohol, which is interesting since other products are specifically advertised as being “alcohol-free.”
Overall, this line is worth considering, especially if you prefer a more targeted approach to skin care that focuses on science rather than trends. For more information, visit cosrx.kr, the brand’s official Korean site. COSRX is available for purchase at several U.S. and online retailers, including Ulta, Amazon, and SokoGlam.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.