Salicylic Acid Products

Salicylic acid is a highly effective anti-aging treatment clinically proven to treat a variety of aging skin conditions

Salicylic acid, otherwise known as Beta Hydroxy Acid, BHA, is known to be an especially effective treatment for oily and acne prone skin types.

Best Anti-Aging Skin Care Treatments

Clinically proven as effective as the Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA's), BHA or salicylic acid, is an exfoliant that improves skin texture, skin tone, and treats acne prone skin.

BHA is generally considered to be an excellent alternative treatment to AHA.

Salicylic acid accomplishes a similar range of rejuvenation as that of glycolic acid.

Beta Hydroxy Acids are most commonly used by Dermatologists as a successful acne treatment.

BHA is widely considered to be an effective exfoliant and skin rejuvenator; especially for oily and acne prone skin types.

Similar to glycolic acid, most skin types need to become accustomed gradually to salicylic acid products due to the potential of increased sensitivity and irritation. Make sure to carefully follow the directions on the product label for the best results.

Choose a BHA product with an effective concentration of salicylic acid.  Formulations that include 1% to 2% of beta hydroxy acid are the strengths recommended for home use.

Important Note:
Higher concentrations of a BHA product should only be utilized under the supervision
of a medical or licensed skin care professional.

Like other acid-based skin treatments, salicylic acid products work by causing the cells of the epidermis to slough off more readily, preventing pores from clogging up, and allowing room for new cell growth.


Sensitive skin types should begin with a lower concentration and gradually work up to higher percentages to minimize potential skin irritation.

Salicylic acid, a plant hormone occurring naturally in the bark of the willow tree as well as in wintergreen leaves, has been studied extensively for over two centuries in various medical applications. In fact, many considered it one of the most essential medical ingredients available.

“Salicylic acid belongs to a class of medications known as keratolytic agents, and is derived from sources like the bark of the white willow,” explains Dr. David Lortscher, board-certified dermatologist. “It’s chemically similar to the active component in aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid). As such, it has anti-inflammatory properties that both heal and soothe the skin.”

Salicylic acid is seen in a variety of skin care products as well as medicinal applications used to treat a variety of skin conditions.

Dermatologists use forms of BHA to treat:

  • Acne
  • Psoriasis
  • Eczema
  • Warts
  • Dandruff
  • Ringworm

Salicylic acid is also used in chemical peels to deeply penetrate the skin, stimulating cell renewal and collagen production.

A salicylic acid chemical peel can gently remove the upper layers of your skin’s surface. New skin will grow in its place, and that new skin will be firmer and smoother, with fewer fine lines, wrinkles, and blemishes.


Like other acids, salicylic acid products react with the upper layer of the epidermis, weakening the binding properties that hold the dead skin cells together on the top layer of the skin.

This allows the dead cells to be exfoliated, exposing live skin cells which begins the process of stimulating cell renewal and restoring skin health.

Be forewarned. . .

  • The skin needs to gradually become accustomed to any of these acids otherwise the skin can quickly become irritated.

  • AHA and BHA acid treatments  increase the skin's sensitivity to the sun, so be sure to protect your skin by using a SPF moisturizing treatment.

  • Make sure to carefully follow the directions on any BHA skin care product for the best results.

Salicylic acid comes in several formats, including:

  • Liquids
  • Gels
  • Lotions
  • Wipes
  • Shampoos
  • Creams
  • Serums

 For example:

  • The daily use of a toner gradually exfoliates dead cell build-up, dissolving oil and preventing breakouts.
  • Exfoliating cleaners remove dead cells and unclog pores.
  • Face masks penetrate to remove layers of dead skin cell build-up and dissolve oil.
  • Chemical peels penetrate more deeply through the skin layers to un-clog pores, treat blackheads, gradually reduce acne scarring and diminish fine lines and wrinkles.

Salicylic acid products in concentrations of 2% to 3% are recommended for over-the-counter treatments.

Higher concentrations should only be used when prescribed by a medical professional.

Product Resources:

three top skin care lines specializing in bha salicylic acid formulations. . .

The FDA along with the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel concluded that clinical studies of products containing salicylic acid are safe for use by consumers if:

  • The final product is formulated in such a way that it protects the skin from increased sun sensitivity or its package directions tell consumers to use daily protection from the sun.

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