Clear Genius 10% AHA + BHA + PHA Blend Clarifying Liquid Peel
Clear Genius 10% AHA + BHA + PHA Blend Clarifying Liquid Peel from Bliss just misses the mark of ranking among the best leave-on combination acid peels for all skin types. Although it delivers an interesting mix of PHA (polyhydroxy acid) gluconolactone plus AHAs glycolic and lactic acids and likely just shy of 1% BHA ingredient salicylic acid, the formula’s pH of 4.4 is outside the range all of these ingredients need to work to their fullest potential.
This fragrance-free facial peel is packaged in a frosted glass bottle. It comes boxed with a cap on the bottle, which you can remove, discard, and add the accompanying dropper-type dispenser. You’re directed to apply evenly on cleansed skin, and we found this has a wonderfully light, silky feel that sets to a non-sticky finish. Other products layered over this well, no signs of rolling or pilling.
Although labeled a “peel”, the 10% acid concentration is on the low side for such products, which are typically designed to be rinsed after a short period of time. Clear Genius is meant to be left on overnight, which is likely why Bliss capped the acids at a 10% combined concentration. You’re mostly getting gluconolactone, whose larger molecular size means slower penetration into skin and a lower likelihood of that initial stinging sensation some leave-on exfoliants have.
In a wise move, Bliss added soothing plant extracts of licorice root, green tea (Camellia oleifera), aloe, and a type of red algae known as Chondrus crispus. Those help skin handle the acids as well as counter any potential irritation from the weak irritant witch hazel water that’s along for the ride. Do keep this semi-opaque bottle stored in a dark place, as ongoing exposure to light will cause the natural ingredients to lose potency.
Bliss claims this peel utilizes a patented, time-released system which is nice and can certainly aid performance, but in terms of the patent (whose number isn’t indicated anywhere on the outer carton or product itself), that boast isn’t a guarantee of effectiveness; rather, it’s simply a unique way of doing something that may or may not be better than other methods.
Ultimately what matters most is the pH of this formula, and it’s just not where it needs to be for optimum results. Having said that, it’s not so far from the ideal range that you won’t see any results. This will certainly help smooth and refine skin, and may also show modest benefit on clogged pores, just not as impressive as the options on our list of best exfoliants.
- Contains a mix of hydroxy acids known to improve skin.
- Silky-smooth liquid applies easily and doesn’t feel sticky at dry-down.
- Layers well with other products.
- Smart mix of skin-soothing ingredients.
- Fragrance free.
- The pH of 4.4 keeps the hydroxy acids back from working to full potential.
- Patented release system doesn’t mean superior to other delivery systems.
This spa-quality, pore-clearing facial treatment works overnight to decongest pores and exfoliate dead surface cells for next-level skin clarity. Wake up to smaller, tighter pores and a clear, calm, smooth complexion. Features a patented time-release system to clarify and transform problem skin. Powered by a 10% blend of alpha (AHA), beta (BHA) and polyhydroxy (PHA) acids that boosts skin clarity without irritation.
The story of Bliss starts in 1996, when personal trainer Marcia Kilgore opened a New York spa designed around no-fuss skin treatments and de-stressing regimens for busy lifestyles. Over time, clients asked for Bliss-branded skin care products, and so Bliss skin care was born.
Bliss enjoyed success for years, being sold in spas as well as online and at some brick-and-mortar retailers. Kilgore eventually sold Bliss, and after changing hands a couple more times, the brand began to lose some of its identity. Its most recent owners decided it was time for a back to our roots makeover, with lower prices across the board and a cleaner version of Bliss's iconic white with splashes of color packaging.
Bliss's biggest appeal is in providing people with a spa-like experience at home. The line features multiple masks, in addition to exfoliation treatments, moisturizers, and body care products for a variety of skin types and concerns. While there are some missteps in the line (including fragranced products and some instances of jar packaging), there are some gems to be found among Bliss's offerings you just have to know where to look.
For more information on Bliss, visit www.blissworld.com.
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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.