Thioctic Acid

Also-called-like-this: Alpha-Lipoic Acid
What-it-does: antioxidant


Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA) is a great antioxidant that's also part of the body's natural antioxidant system. It's soluble both in water-rich and lipid-rich environments so it's versatile and can interact with many types of evil oxidants as well as other nice antioxidants. 

ALA seems to be a great choice for topical use as studies show it can penetrate the skin rapidly where it's converted to DHLA (dihydrolipoic acid), an even more potent antioxidant molecule.  A nicely designed (we mean double-blind, placebo-controlled) 12-week study from 2003 confirmed that 5% ALA cream can decrease skin roughness and improve general signs of photoaging statistically significantly.  A slight catch, though, is that burning and warmth in the skin was quite a common side effect, especially in the first 4 weeks. 

All in all, ALA is definitely a research-proven, great antioxidant but if your skin is sensitive higher concentrations might not be for you.

Show me some proof

  • Beitner, Harry. "Randomized, placebo‐controlled, double blind study on the clinical efficacy of a cream containing 5% α‐lipoic acid related to photoageing of facial skin." British Journal of Dermatology 149.4 (2003): 841-849.
  • Podda, Maurizio, et al. "Activity of alpha-lipoic acid in the protection against oxidative stress in skin." Oxidants and antioxidants in cutaneous biology. Vol. 29. Karger Publishers, 2001. 43-51.

Products with Thioctic Acid

The Ordinary Alpha Lipoic Acid 5% about-face essentials Resqoil DrGL Skin Repair Derma E Firming Dmae Toner Derma E Ester C Cleanser Zelens Intense Defence Antioxidant Serum Paula's Choice Resist Super Antioxidant Serum BRAD Biophotonic Skin Care Essential Elixir Pore-Tightening Resurfacing Replenish Serum Made from earth Vitamin Enhanced Face Firming Serum Bioelements Multi-Task Eye Creme Perricone MD Thio:Plex Intensive 2-Step Brightening System [Step 1: Intensive Base] Skin Actives Every Lipid Serum Skin Actives Every Lipid Serum - Vegan Trader Joe's Nourish All In One Facial Cleanser EltaMD Pm Therapy Facial Moisturizer Perricone MD Cocoa Moisture Mask Skin Actives Vitamin C Serum South Beach Skincare Lifecell EltaMD Uv Physical Spf 41 Juice Beauty Antioxidant Serum OLEHENRIKSEN Truth Serum Trader Joe's Nourish Enriched Intensive Antioxidant Facial Moisturizer Juice Beauty Green Apple Brightening Emulsion Ausceuticals 20% Vitamin C Serum Hada Labo Goku-Jyun Alpha Lifting & Firming Lotion Kiss My Face Face Factor Spf30 Sunscreen Ole Henriksen Face The Truth Gel Cleanser Skin Actives Anti-Aging Cream Eminence Organic Skin Care Bamboo Firming Fluid Mad Hippie Hydrating Nutrient Mist Ringana Anti-Wrinkle Serum Skin Actives Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizer Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation Skin Actives Bright-I Cream Perricone MD Re:Firm Surface Recovery Treatment Drunk Elephant Shaba Complex Eye Serum Skin Actives Restoration Cream Skin Actives Vitamin A Cream Liz K First C Serum Skin Actives Daily Defense Anti-Aging Day Cream With Spf 30 CNP Laboratory Propolis Deep Moisture Sleeping Pack CNP Laboratory Green Propolis Anti-Oxidant Ampule Sarah Chapman Overnight Facial Skin Actives Skin Brightening Cream Skin Actives Antioxidant Day Cream Neogen Neogen Real Ferment Micro Serum Neogen Real Ferment Micro Serum Serious Skincare Creamerum Evolve Cream/Serum Blended Facial Beauty Treatment Skin Actives Dream Cream Skin Actives Ultimate Moisturizing Cream