Salicylic acid and glycolic acid are two widely used components in skin care products.
Numerous over-the-counter (OTC) products, such as toners, serums, and cleansers for the face, contain them.
Both chemicals have the ability to exfoliate your skin and treat acne, but they differ from one another and offer various qualities and advantages.
You can use the information in this article to determine whether glycolic acid or salicylic acid is more appropriate for the condition or type of your skin.
Along with product recommendations, it will examine each ingredient’s advantages and disadvantages.
✅ Salicylic acid and glycolic acid are two widely used components in skin care products.
✅ Dead skin cells can be removed by glycolic acid because it is a powerful exfoliator.
✅ Salicylic acid is typically a better choice if you have skin that is prone to acne.
✅ Acne can be prevented or treated, and it can eliminate extra sebum.
Glycolic acid: What is it?
Alpha hydroxy acids include glycolic acid. Although sugarcane contains it naturally, it can also be produced in a laboratory. Due to its tiny size, glycolic acid can easily pass through the epidermal barrier. Glycolic acid retains moisture while exfoliating your skin when applied topically. It works by removing dead skin cells from your skin’s top layer. This encourages the development of new skin.
In addition, glycolic acid reduces inflammation and offers UVB radiation protection. Additionally, it combats the germs responsible for acne outbreaks. The primary uses of glycolic acid are to balance out skin tone and lessen indications of aging. Also useful IN minimizING sun damage, acne scars, and other darker skin patches known as hyperpigmentation.
They can lighten your skin tone, reduce the visibility of pores, minimize the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, increase skin elasticity, and control acne outbreaks. Because of these advantages, glycolic acid is frequently suggested for the following types of skin, skin that is prone to hyperpigmentation, skin that is aging, and acne-prone. Despite being widely regarded as safe, glycolic acid can irritate certain people.
If a product has a significant amount of glycolic acid, say 10% or more, this is more likely to occur. Additionally, glycolic acid might heighten UV sensitivity. To prevent sun damage, it’s crucial to use sunscreen when taking glycolic acid.
Salicylic acid: What is it?
A beta hydroxy acid is salicylic acid (BHA). It can be found in wintergreen leaves and willow bark in nature. In a lab, it can also be artificially produced. Salicylic acid exfoliates the skin in a similar way to glycolic acid. It’s a great component for unclogging pores because it can lower sebum production and remove extra sebum (oil). Additionally, salicylic acid has negligible anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects.
Most commonly, salicylic acid is used to both prevent and cure acne and decrease the appearance of blackheads and manage oily skin. Acne-prone skin that is greasy and vulnerable to hyperpigmentation, responds well to it. Salicylic acid is present in many over-the-counter (OTC) products, however, not everyone should use it. Dryness or irritation may result. Rarely, salicylic acid can result in a serious allergic reaction.
Which is more effective for acne?
Both substances may be helpful for your skin if you have acne. Salicylic acid, however, is generally a superior option. Salicylic acid decreases skin sebum, as opposed to glycolic acid. This is crucial since sebum can block pores and increase your likelihood of developing acne. Additionally, extra sebum encourages the development of acne-causing bacteria. Salicylic acid’s exfoliating, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties are also advantageous for acne-prone skin.
Chemical peels are cosmetic procedures that can improve the appearance of your skin, get rid of dead skin cells, and level out skin tone. Select a product containing glycolic acid if this is your primary objective. The ability of glycolic acid to penetrate and exfoliate the skin is greatly enhanced by its tiny molecular size. It also aids in keeping moisture in your skin. On the other side, salicylic acid may have a drying impact. Additionally, applying salicylic acid could unintentionally eliminate too much sebum if you don’t have oily skin.
Which one suits you best?
The acid that is best for you relies on a number of factors, just like any other product in skin care.
Glycolic acid may be better if the following applies to you:
- wish to lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles but are mostly concerned about hyperpigmentation or an uneven skin tone.
- don’t have oily skin, and you rarely or never get an acne outbreak
Salicylic acid, however, is generally a better choice if you:
- have ongoing pimples of acne
- have blocked pores or greasy skin that is prone to acne
Additionally, products combining salicylic acid and glycolic acid are available. If you suffer from both hyperpigmentation and acne, this combination is great.
Salicylic acid and glycolic acid are two widely used components in skin care products. Dead skin cells can be removed by glycolic acid because it is a powerful exfoliator. It works well to lessen fine wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and uneven skin tone.
Salicylic acid is typically a better choice if you have skin that is prone to acne. Acne can be prevented or treated, and it can eliminate extra sebum. Always read and follow the instructions on the label before using any skin care products. Utilizing excessively could irritate.
Consult a dermatologist or skin care specialist if you’re still undecided about whether glycolic acid or salicylic acid is best for your skin.