Review: Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment (Perfect or Painful?)

California-based beauty and cosmetics company Sunday Riley is perhaps best-known for their renowned Lactic Acid All-In-One high potency formula, a purified grade lactic acid treatment that deeply exfoliates dull, pore-clogging dead skin cells, revealing smoother, fresher, younger-looking skin by expediting the cellular turnover process.

Fine lines and wrinkles appear visually plumped and smoothed out, while the skin looks more radiant and refreshed in aesthetic. With continued use, the appearance of stubborn hyper-pigmentation, brown spots, dullness, feathering, and all other visible signs of aging are supposedly reduced for a younger-looking complexion. The product is suitable for all skin types and all ages, and is formulated with licorice extract which further aids brightening benefits to the skin.

Review: Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment (Perfect or Painful?) 1

Sunday Riley Good Genes: Review

While I found great results in using the product, with more sensitive skin types, I wouldn’t always pick this as a first option. While the manufacturer claims the product is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin, I did find it to be a bit harsh and create a bit of redness.

While I noticed visible results with respect to other benefits, this was a product I seemed to have a bit of an allergy to and I wasn’t able to sustain continual use. Bearing in mind this was a personal sensitivity and perhaps allergy, I still wanted to take time to effectively and accurately review the product, bearing in mind other reviews and some objectivity.

While it wasn’t perfect for my skin, it remains a bestseller and most popular choice for many. So if your skin can handle this product and you’ve used similar formulations or ingredients prior to trying this (i.e. lactic acid formulations), I certainly would still recommend it.

Anti-aging benefits are incredible and certainly visible- I know this from only discontinued use and a limited frame of time. Additionally, it was easy to return the product and exchange it for a more suitable formulation (I personally prefer the Sunday Riley treatment oil designed for sensitive skin).

So while you should bear in mind this product is very strong and extremely potent, the formulation certainly has a very high degree of efficacy if the skin itself is not allergic to the ingredient.

If you’re comparison shopping for similar products, check out our reviews on other anti-aging skincare items like the La Mer Concentrate, Valjean Labs Facial Serum, and Tatcha’s Water Cream while you’re here!

Sunday Riley Good Genes
Image Credit: Sunday Riley

Sunday Riley Good Genes: Benefits and Ingredients

Purified grade lactic acid is enhanced with licorice for additional brightening benefits in this formulation. The product is free of any parabens or sulfates and not tested on any animals. The product provides maximum anti-aging benefits and seems to be more potent and effective than the majority of the retinoid products and gylcolic acids on the market, as well as anti-aging skin creams.

The product should always be used in conjunction with a sunscreen, as surface layers of the skin are removed and exposed, making it more prone to damage upon sun exposure. Cellular turnover is expedited, sloughing away dead skin cells and improving collagen synthesis. Regular users of the product can expect to see visible anti-aging benefits, with the main factors of differentiation being in the short time the product takes to produce results (minutes- days), as well as the potency of the product ingredients and subsequent impact on anti-aging benefits.

Here are the main ingredients and a summation of top benefits to use:


  • Acts as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant
  • Helps restore radiance, fully brightens skin
  • Helps treat acne scarring, any scar marks, prevents new scar tissue formation
  • Improves the appearance of dark marks and sun spots
  • Improves the appearance of dark under-eye circles
  • Helps in the treatment of skin conditions, such as psoriasis and eczema
  • Heals wounds and skin infections
  • Firms and tightens skin, while fighting wrinkles (existing and the prevention of new wrinkles from forming)


  • Increased collagen production assists anti-aging benefits
  • Anti-acne
  • Suitable for treating sun damage and can act as a soothing agent for the skin (please note when using this product a sunscreen must still be applied topically daily)
  • Fully restores hydration and moisture to the skin, great for dryness or dullness
  • Anti-aging benefits to use
  • Lightens and brightens the skin, great for even texture
  • Softens skin, creating a smooth aesthetic and feeling in texture


  • Healing to the skin, with antiseptic properties to calm and soothe
  • Reduces oily skin and helps in treating and preventing acne
  • Fights fungal infection on the skin
  • Helps with reducing blackheads
  • Tones the skin, promoting balance and cleansing

Lactic Acid

  • Deeply exfoliates pore-clogging dead skin
  • Visible reduction in pore size
  • Fights signs of sun spots and hyper-pigmentation
  • Restores a youthful appearance, treating signs of fine lines, wrinkles, deeper set wrinkles, and other skin concerns that come with anti-aging
  • Offers preventative anti-aging benefits with continued use in addition to treating existing damage
  • Controls oily skin and improves overall texture
  • Reduces the appearance of scarring (i.e. acne scars)
Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Bottle
Image Credit: Sunday Riley

Sunday Riley Good Genes: Pros & Cons

The main benefits to use are in total skin restoration and major benefits in retroactive and preventative anti-aging treatment.

People love this product and review it quite highly for its ability to reverse and treat wrinkles, fine lines, feathering, sun damage, sun spots, and provide total resurfacing benefits to the skin. If you have fairly “tough” skin and limited sensitivities, this product offers amazing benefits of hydration and restored youthfulness in one.

Here are a look at some key pros and cons to bear in mind:


  • Paraben and sulfate free
  • Cruelty free company- product has not been tested on any animals or formulated using any animal ingredients or products
  • Rapid visible results- visible difference immediately, within the scope of only a few minutes time
  • Flash facial- founder Sunday Riley enjoys combining two pumps of product with a different mask or ceramic slip clay cleanser for an immediate and radiant finish deep facial treatment (results in under 10 minutes)
  • In clinical studies and trials, 100% of users noticed smoother and more radiant skin, noticed a reduction in wrinkles, and a reduction in fine lines
  • In similar testing trials, 100% said they would recommend to a friend and that this was the single most effective anti-aging product they had tried
  • Very potent, clinical strength
  • Over time, users will experience visibly younger skin, less wrinkles, and fully restored skin
  • Over time, signs of sun spots and hyper-pigmentation will completely go away, with fully restored brightening effects
  • Visible reduction in pore size
  • Visible reduction in acne scarring
  • Skin is smoother, softer, and more radiant


  • Price- while there are sales on the product frequently, and it can be found discounted, but it certainly doesn’t come cheap, the positive here is in needing a small amount of the product to see visible results
  • Potential for allergy or irritation- lactic acid can irritate the skin if it is very sensitive, so while the manufacturer claims it is suitable for all skin types (and I do know other people who like it who are sensitive), people with very sensitive skin types or any known or suspected allergy should probably stay away from the product
  • Product created redness and irritation to the skin, I wasn’t able to continue usage and discontinuation was a bit of a relief

Sunday Riley Good Genes: Money Back Guarantee

If you are in any way dissatisfied with the use of the product, it does not work for your skin, or you experience any product allergy or reaction to the formulation, you may elect to return the item. In this case, the manufacturer will refund the entire purchase price of the item.

You may also wish to exchange the product for an equal and full refund. If you are a first-time user or new to lactic acid, or simply have any uncertainty prior to use, you can bear in mind the policy prior to a final point of sale decision. I ultimately used this policy myself, and was thankful for the refund as the purchase price isn’t cheap.

Sunday Riley Good Genes 3
Image Credit: Sunday Riley

Review: Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment (Perfect or Painful?) 1

Sunday Riley Good Genes: The Final Verdict

Sunday Riley’s Good Genes topical treatment with purified grade lactic acid is great for those seeking full anti-aging benefits to use. Users can expect to see visible results and a more youthful aesthetic, typically quite quickly. With regular use over time, users can expect continued restored radiance and a reduction in sun spots and signs of hyper-pigmentation.

The product brightens, treats fine lines, reduces wrinkles, and reduces pore size. 100% of those who test the product and find it suitable for use do experience visible results to the skin in the form of a more youthful appearance.

With that said, those with very sensitive skin, or those who have experienced reactions in the past to clinical strength treatment products or lactic acid should avoid the use of this product, as it can be very irritating to those who are sensitive.

Some users will experience an initial “purge” period where the skin will break out for a few days. Ultimately, if you’re seeking a product to tackle signs of aging and restore radiance very quickly, this deeply exfoliating product may be exactly what you’re looking for.

Anyone using the product should do so in conjunction with a topical daily sunscreen for skin protection. If you are comfortable using most skincare products and are ok with the price point, I would certainly recommend it.


Sunday Riley Good Genes

Suitable-Sensitive Skin


Buy on Amazon
User Rating: Be the first one !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button