Illuminating Exfoliant with AHA/BHA & Hydration Matrix


A next generation triple action exfoliant, hailed for delivering the most glowing, clarified and smooth skin. 

The treatment works to reveal an instantly smooth, supple and luminous complexion with 21 high performing ingredients chosen to brighten, detoxify, and uniquely hydrate the skin.

With its whipped and bouncy texture, it combines physical and chemical exfoliants, AHA and BHA, to stimulate cell regeneration and keep the surface of the skin clear from dead skin cells that can lead to congestion, and block absorption of hydration and other actives.

The starring ingredient in this exfoliant treatment is tiny lactic acid molecules (which can sink deeper into the skin than other forms of alpha hydroxy acid) which break apart pore-clogging debris, gently exfoliating away dead, dulling cells to reveal the radiance beneath and minimise the signs of congestion, fine lines, wrinkles and dullness. As dull, dead surface cells are removed, clarity and smoothness is restored.

To top it off, it uniquely delivers thirst-quenching hydration with our unique active, Saccharide Isomerate, which holds moisture deep within the skin and stays active for 24 hours.


Cleansing and exfoliating are fundamental to a person’s skincare routine and are directly linked to anti-ageing benefits. Proper cleansing and exfoliation also enables the following skincare products to penetrate the epidermis effectively. They lay the building blocks for strong overall skin health. 

Our Illuminating Exfoliant has an advanced formula contains lactic acid (AHA) derived from maize. Lactic acid dissolves the glue that cements dead skin cells together, revealing a smoother, brighter skin complexion and delivers optimum cell turnover rate. Willow bark (BHA) is incorporated to break down excess sebum in clogged pores, it penetrates the pores deeper to prevent breakouts and is known for its supreme anti-inflammatory properties. 

Powerhouse hydration ingredient, Saccharide Isomerate, is also incorporated in the Illuminating Exfoliant to replenish the skin’s moisture after exfoliating. It delivers thirst-quenching hydration to the skin for a prolonged period of time and holds 1000 times its water weight.

It’s not enough for our products to be 100% natural, they have to have uncompromising results.  

In in-vivo tests, is proven to:

  • Provide 72-hours of long-lasting, deep hydration
  • Prolong skin hydration up to 6 days after the last application
  • Face mapping shows that 3 hours after a single application, excessively dry skin is hydrated

How does Saccharide Isomerate work?

Its effectiveness is based on its unique composition, which is like that of the carbohydrate complex found in human skin, and on its unique mechanism for binding itself with the outer layers of the skin, giving it instant and long-lasting hydration abilities.  

It's a fraction of the size of most other hydrating ingredients, meaning it can penetrate deep into the inner layers of the skin.  Pentavitin can only be removed through the natural shedding of dead skin cells.   

Facial skin hydration colour mapping - a revolution

Pentavitin has been clinically proven by skin hydration colour mapping to hold moisture in the skin for 72 hours. Hydration levels were measured at 30 different pre-defined points on the face, and a specific algorithm was then used to translate them into detailed facial colour maps. 

21 active high performing ingredients 

We believe in innovative, natural, complex formulas. We fill our products with the highest number of science-backed, consciously grown and cutting-edge ingredients from around the globe, to produce high-performing natural products. 

Every ingredient works hard in our formulation to prevent and repair hyperpigmentation, but below are your noteworthy ‘skin heroes’:

  • Hibiscus Flower: Contains a natural source of AHAs to help exfoliate and control oily skin and clogged pores. Hibiscus is rich in antioxidants called anthocyanins, which fight free radicals and help to prevent premature skin ageing. It maintains elastin in the skin by decreasing the activity of elastase, which is an enzyme that breaks down our skin’s natural elastin.
  • Saccharide Isomerate: Has a smaller molecular size than Hyaluronic Acid, meaning it can penetrate the skin’s epidermis deeper, for prolonged hydration results. Saccharide Isomerateworks to help the skin create its own internal water source to continually rehydrate itself, it locks in moisture by strengthening the skin’s barrier function. Pentavitin works in as little as three hours and testing proves it works non-stop for 72-hours, delivering more hydration than any other ingredient on the market before.
  • Lactic Acid: Dissolves the glue that cements dead skin cells together, revealing a smoother, brighter skin texture and delivers optimum cell turnover rate.
  • Willow Bark: Breaks down excess sebum in clogged pores to prevent breakouts.
  • Jojoba Wax Beads: Biodegradable beads gently that exfoliate the skin. They have natural emollient properties and help to maintain the skin’s natural pH balance.

Full list of ingredients

Below is our full list of ingredients with their EWG ratings in brackets (1 = low, 10 = high).   

You can also learn more about each ingredient and our sustainability goals in our Emma Lewisham Sustainability Framework.

Our Illuminating Exfoliant formulation is vegan.  

Organic Aloe barbadensis (Aloe Vera) leaf extract (1)  •  Water (1)  •  Coco-caprylate (1)  •  Cetearyl alcohol (1)  •  Organic Helianthus annuus (Sunflower) seed oil (1)  • Glyceryl stearate citrate (1)  • Hydrogenated Simmondsia chinensis (Jojoba) oil (1) • Glycerin (1) • Pentylene glycol (1)  • Kaolin (1)  • Salix alba (Willow) bark extract (1)  • Hibiscus sabdariffa (Hibiscus) flower extract (1)  • Organic Mentha piperita (Peppermint) leaf extract (1)  • Lactic acid (1)  • Organic Primula veris (Cowslip) extract (1)  • Organic Leontopodium alpinum (Edelweiss) flower/leaf extract (1)  • Saccharide isomerate (1)  • Organic Achillea millefolium (Yarrow) extract (1)  • Alaria esculenta (Seaweed) extract (1)  • Organic Alchemilla vulgaris (Lady’s Mantle) extract (1)  • Organic Malva sylvestris (Mallow) extract (1)  • Organic Salvia hispanica (Chia) seed oil (1)  • Citrus grandis (Grapefruit) peel oil (1)  • Organic Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm) leaf extract (1)  • Organic Veronica officinalis (Speedwell) extract (1)  •  Mica (2)  •  Xanthan gum (1)  • Glyceryl caprylate (1)  • Caprylic/capric triglyceride (1)  • Dehydroacetic acid (1)  •  Titanium dioxide (2)  •  Iron oxides (2)  •  Benzyl alcohol (4)  •  Parfum (natural fragrance, derived from flowers)  •  Benzyl benzoate (5)  •  Citral (3)  •  Citronellol (4)  •  Farnesol (4)  •  Geraniol (5)  •  Limonene (4)  • Linalool (3)

  • 100% of total ingredients are naturally derived
  • 76% of ingredients are organic
  • Our formulations contain benzyl benzoate, citral, citronellol, farnesol, geraniol, limonene, linalool in very low concentrations as constituents of our essential oils.  It’s worth noting that the EWG rating for these, refer only to the individual constituents extracted in a lab from the essential oil, or synthetic replications.  The ratings are not applicable to our formulas, as we never use extracted or synthetic constituents, only the pure naturally occurring essential oil 

This product is included in our Emma Lewisham Beauty Circle free recycling programme. We believe the future of beauty is a circular model, where brands take ownership for what happens to their packaging at the end of its life.

Our Illuminating Exfoliant box is printed on an environmentally responsible paper which has been produced using PEFC certified pulp from responsible sources. We print on it using mineral, oil free, vegetable-based inks and water-based coatings. Oil based glue is required to assemble these boxes. Stamping foil used on the box does not affect recyclability. It is 100% recyclable in New Zealand with no chemical coatings, which means our boxes will degrade naturally, whether they are composted or simply put in the landfill.

Our Illuminating Exfoliant bottle is a frosted glass bottle with a plastic cap and pump made from imported virgin materials.

We have developed a Sustainability Framework which provides transparency on what Emma Lewisham is doing to address the six drivers of our supply chain: raw materials, supplier, manufacturing, distribution, retail outlets and customers. These are aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Read the Emma Lewisham Sustainability Framework.

Use 2 pumps, 3 times a week. Use a small layer of exfoliant and use gentle circular motions for 5-10 seconds. Leave on the skin for another 20 seconds to allow the actives to take full effect, before washing off with lukewarm water.

The Emma Lewisham

Sustainability StandardTM

Naturally derived & traceable

Scientifically proven ingredients

Part of the Emma Lewisham Beauty Circle – Refill & Recycle

Vegan. PETA certified animal testing free

Safe to use while pregnant & breastfeeding

Compostable packaging

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