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Acne Be Gone! Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Salicylic Acid

Acne Be Gone! Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Salicylic Acid

Doesn’t salicylic acid sound like a term straight out of your science textbook? I felt the exact same thing when I first heard about it. Even though it sounds like a dangerous ingredient to put on your face, it’s far from that. Salicylic acid is your pimple’s worst nightmare! It belongs to the beta-hydroxy acid family and is present in plenty of skincare products today. 

What makes it awesome you ask? It reduces inflammation, cleanses your pores and dries out pimples completely. Similar to aspirin, salicylic acid too, is derived from the willow bark. Packed with anti-inflammatory properties, salicylic acid isn’t just meant to be used on the face. You can apply it to your underarm and bikini area too to treat stubborn ingrown hair and blemishes on the body.

Skincare Benefits of Salicylic Acid?

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So, why should you invest in salicylic acid in the first place? Perhaps once you learn of its benefits, it would encourage you to include this product into your skincare routine too. 

Perfect For Hyperpigmentation


There are many reasons why you are suffering from hyperpigmentation in the first place. It could have to do with inflammation, a skin injury, sun damage or a hormonal imbalance. Applying salicylic acid to the area helps control the melanin production, lightens hyperpigmentation without irritating the skin. Like all good things in life, it takes time for salicylic acid to work its magic. Don’t expect instant results. 

Works As An Exfoliator


It’s time to give up using those bead exfoliators and befriend salicylic acid instead. It’s gentler on the skin and helps to soften keratin. The moment that happens, salicylic acid goes deep into your pores and unclogs them from dust, oil, dead skin and bacteria. Post cleansing, your skin will instantly start to feel softer, smoother and brighter.  

Buh-Bye Wrinkles!


Do you want to know what makes salicylic acid so cool? Its ability to stimulate and boost collagen production. The moment it comes in contact with your skin, it’ll reduce the thickness and roughness of the dead skin layer and will make your skin feel plumper, smoother and fare more radiant. 


No More Zits


When your pores are clogged, acne begins to pop on the surface of your skin. Sure, you could use the best of the best face wash to cleanse the area, but it won’t do as great of a job than salicylic acid for sure. Salicylic acid penetrates deeply into the follicles, kills the bacteria trapped in there, reduces the size of the zit and gets rid of excess sebum. Come to think of it, it’s the ultimate zit zapper!

Also Read: Salicylic Acid Face Wash

The Best of The Best Salicylic Acid Products To Invest In

Mario Badescu Anti-Acne Serum

This serum’s salicylic acid formula helps to dissolve dead skin cells and improve your skin’s complexion. Just before you go to bed, apply the product to all the acne-prone areas of the face and keep it on for the whole night. Wash your face the next morning.  

Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Salicylic Acid Exfoliant

The best part of using this product is that it works for all skin types. It’s a liquid exfoliator that removes dead skin cells and evens out your skin tone. If you’re wondering how to use it, let me tell you how! Soak a cotton pad and apply the product all over your face – just like you would a toner. Avoid rinsing the product from your skin. Start with once a day and gradually build up your skin’s tolerance to using it twice. 


Kiehls Breakout Control Blemish Treatment Facial Lotion

Tired of living with acne? Well, you need to splurge on this baby! It not only contains salicylic acid but pine bark extract as well. If your skin is inflamed this facial lotion will soothe the area and even out your skin completely. All that’s required from you is consistency. 

OFRA Drying Lotion

Have a date with someone special tomorrow? Well, don’t let your pimple ruin it for you. Take help from this fabulous drying lotion. Formulated with acne-fighting ingredients such as camphor, calamine and salicylic acid, your breakouts will be cleared out while you snooze. 

Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector & Optimizer

A slightly expensive investment, but worth every penny! This amazing dark spot corrector and optimizer keeps your skin calm and helps it resist pigmentation in the future. When using the product, don’t use more than 1-2 pumps of it. Also, make sure that you’re applying the product to your skin once at night and once in the morning. 

Innisfree Bija Trouble Gel Cream

From most of the products mentioned on this list, this one is fairly inexpensive. It’s formulated with Torreya seed oil and 2 % salicylic acid content. The best part is that it’s relaxing, heals and clears the skin from impurities all at the same time! Plus, the packaging is travel-friendly and adorbs.


Glamglow Starpotion Liquid Charcoal Clarifying Oil

What’s not to love about this charcoal clarifying oil? Expensive? Sure! BUT, have you taken a look at the ingredients? It has charcoal, vitamin C, salicylic acid, oleic acid-rich oils, aloe vera teaoxi and turmeric. All their ingredients are bound to make your skin glow and look amazing!

Kama Ayurveda Anti Acne Cleansing Foam

Inexpensive and gets the job done! This anti-acne cleansing foam product reduces breakouts and lightens blemishes over a period of time. When using the product, you will have to apply it to damp skin. Massage in circular motions, rinse and pat dry. Yep, it’s as easy as that. 

Tata Harper Clarifying Mask

One of the best gifts you can get yourself is this amazing clarifying mask. You’ll love it because it’s cruelty-free, vegetarian and free from sulphates, silicones, toxins, artificial colouring, fillers, mineral oil and GMOs. You’ll have to use this product by applying a thick layer of it and keeping it on for a good 15-20 minutes. Then massage warm water to the face and move your fingers in a circular motion. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen after!

The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Solution


– Can I use salicylic acid every day?

Use it in moderation. See how it works for the skin first and then start slow. Twice a week initially. If you experience no skin irritation then increase the number of times. If you still have doubts, consult your dermatologist first before using the product.


– How long does it take for salicylic acid to work?

Your complexion should improve in the first or second week itself. Give it a couple of months more to see more promising results. 

– Side effects of salicylic acid?

Severe burning and skin irritation. Wash the product off instantly if you experience any of this in the first 10 minutes. 

– How long to leave it on your face?

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 1-2 minutes. If you have sensitive skin then 30 seconds tops. Don’t forget to wash your face with cold water after!

– Can salicylic acid remove blackheads?

Over a period of time, salicylic acid can remove blackheads from the face. The ingredient penetrates into your pores and destroys bacteria and sebum trapped inside the pore. As told before, it’s your pimple’s worst nightmare.

– What does salicylic do for your skin?

When salicylic acid comes in contact with your skin, it immediately dissolves bacteria and dust present in the pore. 

Now that you know the A-Z of salicylic acid, I bet you’re tempted to give it a try yourself. Go for it! Just keep your dermatologist in the loop though. 


Featured Image: Shutterstock

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02 Aug 2019

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