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Salicylic Acid

Acne's Greatest Enemy

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Benefits

  • Clears and calms active acne breakouts

  • Helps prevent future comedones forming

  • Oily skin – can actually slow down your skin’s oil production

  • Large pores – helps unclog them reducing their size

  • Softens blackheads, making them easier to extract

  • Helps prevent new blackheads from forming

  • Inhibit melanin formation with low risk of irritation to reduce hyperpigmentation

When you think of acids, you probably think of dangerous substances and not something you’d apply to your skin on the regular. But chemical exfoliants like salycilic acid have a whole host of skincare benefits.

With skin ailments like acne, blackheads and inflammation, for example, applying an acid might seem counter-productive. But salicylic acid is a great anti-inflammatory agent and blemish treatment, which is why you’ll find it in many of the best spot treatments and skin care products for oily skin.

What is Salicylic Acid?

Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA), a type of acid derived from natural sources such as willow tree bark, wintergreen leaves or sweet birch bark.

Technically, it is the only BHA however, there are several salicylic acid derivatives and related ingredients that exert a similar effect on the skin, and you may find these products listed on skin care ingredient lists as: Betaine salicylate; Willow bark extract; Salix nigra bark extract; Beta hydroxybutanoic acid; Sodium salicylate; Trethocanic acid or Tropic acid.

Salicylic acid is a salicylate, meaning it belongs to the same ingredient family as aspirin. People with salicylate allergies (which are rare) should avoid salicylic acid.

How does Salicylic Acid work?

There are three (3) acids that work well in the fight against acne; Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid and Salicyclic Acid. Both Glycolic Acid and Lactic Acid are water soluble whereas Salicylic Acid is oil based. So, what does that mean? It means whilst Glycolic and Lactic are great at cleaning up the skin surface removing old dead skin and replenishing with new skin, Salicylic Acid can actually penetrate into the pores of the skin to unclog them, targetting blackheads and whiteheads,  and acting as an anti-inflammatory that helps red inflamed pimples and pustules go away faster.

If you’re using acids for the first time your skin might feel a little tingly, but over time it’ll become accustomed to salicylic acid and its benefits.  

NOTE: Salicylic Acid is NOT SUITABLE if you are pregnant or lactating.

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