Benefits of Salicylic Acid for Skin: Facts from Dermatologists
8 Min Read
Are you wondering about the advantages of salicylic acid for acne? Want to know the benefits and possible side effects of salicylic acid face wash on skin? Then you are in the right place. This article has everything you are looking for, from what salicylic acid is to how to use salicylic acid face wash and serum properly and what precautions one must follow before using it. Keep reading till the end to see some interesting facts and answers from a dermatologist.
What is Salicylic Acid?
Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA) derived from salicin. It belongs to a class of compounds known for their exfoliating properties. Salicylic acid is widely used in various skincare products due to its ability to penetrate oil and exfoliate the skin.
People frequently use salicylic acid as an ingredient in skin care products to treat acne. It functions to exfoliate the skin and clear clogged pores. Salicylic acid additionally aids in reducing sebum production in the skin.
How Does Salicylic Acid Work for Acne?
Salicylic acid comes with many advantages. It works magically for people with acne. The following are some of the salicylic acid benefits:
1) Acne Lesions Formation:
Blackheads, whiteheads, and pustules result from hair follicles (pores) being clogged with a combination of dead skin cells and oil. These skin issues occur when the normal shedding of dead skin cells and excess oil production lead to blockages in hair follicles.
2) Salicylic Acid’s Action:
Salicylic acid penetrates the skin to break down dead skin cells that clog pores. Salicylic acid is effective in treating adult acne by getting into the skin and dissolving the accumulated dead skin cells, preventing pore blockages.
3) Reduction of Excess Oil:
Salicylic acid works to dissolve excess oil (sebum) that contributes to pore blockage. By targeting and breaking down excess oil, salicylic acid helps prevent the formation of acne lesions like blackheads and whiteheads.
4) Exfoliation and Dead Skin Cell Shedding:
Salicylic acid exfoliates the top layer of the skin, promoting the shedding of dead skin cells. Through its exfoliating properties, salicylic acid aids in removing the outer layer of the skin, preventing the accumulation of dead cells that can clog pores.
5) Time Frame for Results:
The benefits of salicylic acid may take a few weeks, and if no improvement after six weeks, consulting a dermatologist is recommended. Patience is required, as visible improvements in acne may take some time. If there’s no progress after six weeks, seeking professional advice is advisable.
6) Anti-Inflammatory Properties:
Salicylic acid has anti-inflammatory properties. In addition to its role in preventing and treating acne lesions, salicylic acid helps reduce redness and swelling associated with inflammatory responses in the skin.
Skincare Routine of Salicylic Acid for Acne
1) Choose the Right Product:
Salicylic acid is available in various skincare products, including cleansers, face wash, serum, toners, spot treatments, and creams. Choose a product with a concentration suitable for your skin type, typically ranging from 0.5% to 2%.
MFine has just launched Derma Essentials!
We’ve got skincare products for acne which are tailored for different age groups, ensuring everyone finds the perfect match for their skin needs. Our skincare solutions are formalized by dermatologists, are personalized for users and come with a blend of active & natural ingredients. Here are some ways to get the best acne treatment available. Get your customized kit by taking advantage of a free skin evaluation or free derma consultation. Dive into the world of MFine’s skincare innovations, where advanced formulas and natural ingredients come together to give you amazing results.
2) Start Slowly:
If you are new to salicylic acid, start with a lower concentration to allow your skin to adjust. Overuse or using a product with a high concentration may lead to irritation.
3) Consistent Use:
For best results, use salicylic acid consistently as part of your skincare routine. Incorporate it once or twice a day, depending on the product and your skin’s tolerance.
Salicylic acid can be drying, so it’s essential to follow up with a good moisturizer to maintain skin hydration.
Salicylic acid can increase sensitivity to the sun, so always use sunscreen during the day to protect your skin.
How To Use Salicylic Acid Face Wash For Acne?
1) Choose the Right Salicylic Face Wash:
Select a face wash containing salicylic acid. Look for a concentration suitable for your skin type, typically ranging from 0.5% to 2%.
2) Frequency of Use:
Use the face wash once or twice a day, depending on your skin’s sensitivity and the product’s recommendations. Start with once a day and gradually increase if your skin tolerates it well.
3) Prep Your Face:
Wet your face with lukewarm water. This helps to open up the pores and allows the salicylic acid to penetrate more effectively.
4) Apply the Face Wash:
Take a small amount of the salicylic acid face wash and apply it to your fingertips. Gently massage the product onto your damp face using circular motions.
5) Focus on Problem Areas:
Pay extra attention to areas prone to acne, such as the forehead, nose, and chin (T-zone). Ensure that you cover all areas where you frequently experience breakouts.
6) Avoid Eye Area:
Be cautious around the eyes, as salicylic acid may irritate. Avoid direct contact with the eyes, and if accidental contact occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.
7) Allow It to Sit Briefly:
Let the face wash sit on your skin for about 30 seconds to a minute. This gives the salicylic acid enough time to work on breaking down dead skin cells and excess oil.
8) Rinse Thoroughly:
Rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water to remove the face wash. Make sure there is no residue left on your skin.
9) Pat Dry:
Gently pat your face dry with a clean towel. Avoid rubbing, as this can irritate the skin, especially if you have active breakouts.
10) Follow with Moisturizer:
Apply a moisturizer suitable for your skin type. Salicylic acid can be drying, so moisturizing helps maintain skin hydration.
11) Apply Sunscreen (Morning Routine):
If you’re using the face wash in the morning, follow up with a broad-spectrum sunscreen. Salicylic acid can increase sensitivity to the sun.
12) Consistency is Key:
Use the salicylic acid face wash consistently as part of your daily skincare routine. It may take some time before you see significant improvements, so be patient.
If you experience excessive dryness, redness, or irritation, consider reducing the frequency of use or choosing a lower concentration of salicylic acid. If problems persist, consult with a dermatologist for personalized advice. Want to know the benefits of glycerin for skin?
Possible Side Effects of Salicylic Acid on Skin
While salicylic acid is generally thought to be harmless, it might irritate skin when used initially. Additionally, it could remove too much oil, which could irritate and cause dryness.
Other potential side effects include
- skin tingling or stinging
- peeling skin
Precautions To Follow Before Using Salicylic Acid
Before using it, you should consult your physician. Things to talk about are:
Inform your physician of any prior adverse reactions you may have had to salicylic acid or other topical treatments.
Use in kids:
Kids who use it may be more susceptible to skin irritation. Before your child begins utilizing products containing salicylic acid, consult a dermatologist.
Salicylic acid and some drugs don’t work well together. Tell your doctor about all of the medications you take at the moment.
A doctor’s decision to prescribe salicylic acid may be influenced if you have any of the following medical conditions, which you should also disclose to them:
- Liver illness
- Kidney disease
- Skin disease
- Blood vessels illness
- Varcella, or chickenpox
- Influenza (the flu)
- Pregnancy or lactating
What Is Salicylic Acid Toxicity?
Salicylic acid toxicity refers to the adverse effects and potential harm that can occur when an individual is exposed to an excessive amount of salicylic acid.
Here are some key points regarding salicylic acid toxicity:
Symptoms of Salicylic Acid Toxicity:
- Topical Exposure: Excessive redness, irritation, burning sensation, and peeling of the skin.
- Systemic Exposure (ingestion): Symptoms can range from mild to severe and may include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, confusion, rapid breathing, and in severe cases, metabolic acidosis.
- High Concentrations: Using skincare products or medications with a higher concentration of salicylic acid than recommended.
- Prolonged Use: Overusing salicylic acid products over an extended period.
- Accidental Ingestion: Swallowing products containing salicylic acid, especially by children.
Management and Treatment:
- Topical Exposure: Discontinuing use and washing the affected area with water. Applying a soothing, non-irritating moisturizer can help alleviate symptoms.
- Ingestion: Seeking immediate medical attention. Treatment may involve supportive measures, such as intravenous fluids, other specific management, and monitoring of vital signs.
Follow Instructions: Adhering to recommended usage instructions on skincare products or medications containing salicylic acid.
- Keep Out of Reach of Children: Storing products containing salicylic acid in a safe place, away from children.
- Avoid Ingestion: Take care to avoid accidental ingestion of products containing salicylic acid.
- Varies: Individual reactions to salicylic acid can vary, and some people may be more sensitive than others. It’s essential to monitor for any signs of irritation or adverse reactions.
When to Consult a Dermatologist?
If your acne is excessive or persists no matter the use of over-the-counter products containing salicylic acid, it is recommended to consult a dermatologist. They can offer personalized tips and might prescribe stronger medications if required. Remember that individual responses to skincare products can vary, so it’s vital to be aware of how your skin reacts and regulate your skincare routine accordingly.
Interesting Q/A On Salicylic Acid
Here are some common questions on salicylic acid and answers by an expert dermatologist.
Q. What are the uses of salicylic acid serum?
Q. Can a pregnant woman use salicylic acid products?
Ans: If you’re thinking about taking salicylic acid and you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you should speak with your doctor so you can get advice tailored to your circumstances, particularly about any other medications you may be taking or any medical concerns.
Q. Can salicylic acid be used daily?
Ans: Although salicylic acid is safe to use daily, you shouldn’t introduce it to your routine too soon. Start slowly because it may irritate and dry out your skin.
Q. Is salicylic acid good for oily skin?
Ans: Indeed, salicylic acid is beneficial for oily skin. It is mostly renowned for its capacity to thoroughly cleanse the skin, eliminate surplus oil, and exfoliate dead skin cells. On the T-zone, it stops blackheads and whiteheads.
Q. Is salicylic acid good for dry skin?
Ans: Salicylic acid can be drying, and individuals with dry skin should use it cautiously. It’s advisable to start with a lower concentration and incorporate a moisturizer into the skincare routine to counteract potential dryness.
Q. Can I leave 2% salicylic acid on overnight?
Ans: Adults can safely use 0.5% to 5% salicylic acid once every day. Gel forms typically have concentrations between 1% and 2%. Hence, using gel once or twice a day is safe, and you can leave it on for up to seven or eight hours, or even overnight. It is best to consult a dermatologist for personalized recommendations
Q. Does salicylic acid remove tan?
Ans: Salicylic acid is primarily known for its exfoliating and acne-fighting properties. It may help improve skin texture and tone over time but is not specifically formulated for tan removal. Read this article on how to remove face tan.
Q. Does salicylic acid make skin glow?
Ans: Salicylic acid’s exfoliating action can contribute to improved skin texture, making it appear smoother and potentially enhancing the skin’s radiance. Your skin can glow and look attractive without any makeup.
Q. Is salicylic acid for whitening the skin?
It’s important to note that while salicylic acid is generally safe when used as directed, misuse or overexposure can lead to adverse effects. If there are concerns about the use of products containing salicylic acid or if someone experiences symptoms of toxicity, consulting a dermatologist on MFine promptly is recommended for appropriate guidance and treatment.
Was this article helpful?
- 0 0
Love reading our articles?
Subscribe to never miss a post again!