What Does Salicylic Acid Do To Your Skin?

Jun. 4, 2020
In a battle against breakouts and acne, there are a few skincare ingredients that show great results, and Salicylic Acid is one of them. Crowned as a key ingredient in many skincare products, Salicylic Acid is best known for its ability to fight bacterias and acne.
What is Salicylic Acid?
This is a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA), a carbon-based organic compound. San Francisco based Dermatologist, Caren Campbell explains that this compound occurs naturally in willow barks, fruits, and vegetables. BHAs are fat-soluble; they can make their way into the pores to unclog blackheads. Salicylic Acid fights bacteria, reduces inflammation, and also exfoliates skin.
Over-the-Counter Treatments
Salicylic Acid can be obtained in many forms of over-the-counter treatments. You can often find them in cleaners, toners, creams, and much more. Over-the-counter products have a low percentage of Salicylic Acid. Their content ranges from 0.5% to 2%.
These products are the best choice for those who suffer from mild pimples and acne. They are effective against severe types of acne. One can consult a dermatologist and get prescribed products with a stronger percentage of Salicylic Acid.
Make sure you apply the product to your entire face and not just a small area. If you simply apply it over a pimple, it won’t help your skin much. It’s important to apply it over the entire affected area or your face. Applying it to the entire face will help the medication to penetrate into the skin to prevent any pore blockages or tiny blemishes.
OTC products may be the best choice to treat blackheads, bumpy skin and mild pimples. However, they will not give you the results you seek for more serious, inflamed acne breakouts.
Professional Treatments
Salicylic Acid is a key product that is used as a chemical peel agent. Salicylic Acid peels are stronger than the products you get over the counter. The strength of these peels ranges from 20% to 30%. They exfoliate your skin more deeply as compared to OTC products. They are beneficial in treating moderate acne.
The formula of these products is usually safe for all skin types and for other complexions as well. Research suggests that Salicylic Acid peels don’t cause hyperpigmentation, which makes them safer to use.
These peels cannot be done at home by yourself. They can only be done by a professional like a dermatologist or a spa. Salicylic Acid peels cannot be considered a sole acne treatment. For best results, they’re often combined with other acne medications.
However, it’s important that you consult your dermatologist before deciding which treatment is the best for your skin.
Possible Side Effects
Using too much Salicylic Acid on your skin can become a major problem. One of the most common side effects of Salicylic Acid is skin irritation. Since this ingredient works by making its way inside the pores, it can irritate your skin and dry the sensitive areas. This largely depends upon the percentage of Salicylic Acid in a product and on how often one is using it. Thus, it is recommended that if you have sensitive skin then you should hold back on using Salicylic Acid.
If you’re pregnant, taking certain medications, or even blood thinners, it’s best not to use it. You must be cautious when you use Salicylic Acid, applying it on a major portion of your body as it can lead to Salicylate poisoning. Hence, one must not go overboard and use it only on the acne-prone areas instead of layering it all over one’s body.
How to find the best salicylic acid products
If you’re looking for a product that will help keep your skin young and reduce acne, then Salicylic Acid products will give you the best results. Below are a few of the best Salicylic Acid products for you to try.
Vichy Normaderm Deep Cleansing Gel With Salicylic Acid
This gel-based lightweight cleanser is perfect for those who struggle with acne and deep pores. This product combines a special formula of Salicylic Acid and Glycolic Acid. This combination removes dead skin cells and excess oil from your skin. This product is suitable for sensitive skin as well.
CeraVe SA Cream for Rough and Bumpy Skin
If you constantly struggle with dry skin, then you should definitely check out this cream. It contains ceramides, which leaves sensitive dry skin moisturized. Salicylic Acid in this cream removes dead skin cells and Vitamin D improves the health and texture of your skin and moisturizes it.
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash
If your skin is prone to breakouts then this is a great face wash to try. It cleans your skin deeply and keeps your pores from clogging. The optimal level of Salicylic Acid concentration in a face wash should be around 2 to 5%. Don’t use this product excessively, because it can leave your skin dry.
IS Clinical Cleansing Complex
This is safe for all skin and age types. This product deeply cleans your skin and leaves it hydrated. Its paraben-free formula is a blend of Salicylic Acid, herbal extracts, and antioxidants to minimize pores. It protects from damage caused by pollution and the environment. Its Vitamin C brightens your skin and its exfoliating nature leaves you with a smooth finish.
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