Salicylic Acid for Beautiful Skin At Any Age

Salicylic Acid for AcneJune is National Acne Awareness Month and the perfect time  to get up  close and personal with salicylic acid.  One of the first and still  highly  effective   tools in the anti-acne tool box, it  is closely related to the  aspirin  we take  for  pain and fever.  Salicylic acid  is found primarily  in the bark of the  willow tree,and wintergreen leaves.   If you  see  willowbark extract  on a label of a skin care product , the active ingredient  here is salicylic acid.  Salicylic acid  is also known as Beta Hydroxy  acid, and is often compared to its more famous cousin, glycolic acid.

Salicylic Acid—Your Skin’s BFF

Salicylic Acid  has three valuable  properties for the skin:

  1. Even in low concentrations, it  dissolves the   dry,dead cells on the skin surface, leaving healthy ,young skin that  is  soft and fresh.  Even better, by removing this layer stimulates the lower levels  of skin to grow.  By speeding up the growth  process, it can aid removal  of darkened  skin cells, to  brighten the overall complexion.
  2. Salicylic acid is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent reducing the cascade of events that lead to red, tender skin.
  3. It is one of a handful of ingredients that can actually  be absorbed by the skin.  In fact it can absorbed by clogged  pores and dissolve the keratin and oil that is a key part of the acne process.

Salicylic acid  has mild antibacterial activity, but  less so than another popular  acne fighter, benzoyl peroxide.    BP, as it is commonly called  is widely used because  it can attack the  bacteria in the pores that trigger outbreaks.  It is especially useful in teenage acne  while bacteria play a big role.   In adult acne, bacteria are not as important  and  the triggers are inflammation and clogged pores- both of  which are  handled better by salicylic acid.

Salicylic acid  is used in cleanser for  acne and oily skin (eg NeutrogenaOil Free Acne Wash ) , toner ( eg Clinique Acne Solutions Clarifying Lotion), and spot creams for breakouts (eg Murad Acne Spot Treatment)  It is also a valuable ingredient for  both office  and home based peels ( eg Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Face Peel) .  They clean out  cl pores and hasten removal  of minor scarring.  These peels can also be used   safely  by women of color  to  deal with  both acne and irregular pigmentation. But wait there’s more.  Salicylic acid  has  similar cell stimulating properties as  Retin A  that  give it anti-aging  street creds.   To bottom line it,   salicylic peels  can be as effective as stronger glycolic peels without concerns of  irritation.  And that’s a good thing.

For  more  information you can download the FREE  No-Nonsense Beauty Blog Acne Survival Guide when you subscribe to this site.  Just click on the link at the top of the right hand side of the page.



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