Skincare Skills

by Lydia

Skincare blogger

October 25, 2020

Best Salicylic Acid Face Washes

We all have to deal with blackheads, whiteheads, and acne on a regular basis. It's time to do yourself a favor and introduce your acne-prone skin to salicylic acid, an ingredient that's become popular due to it's effectiveness at fighting and preventing breakouts. Salicylic acid is included in many skin care cleansers and body washes already. What a salicylic acid face wash does is eliminate oil and dirt that’s clogging your pores. 

It’s definitely worth a shot to get rid of pimples and stubborn blackheads and whiteheads.

So how do you pick the best salicylic acid face wash? Lucky for you, we've compiled a list of the 20 best salicylic acid face washes and cleansers below.

Vichy Normaderm Daily Deep Cleansing Gel Cleanser

Vichy Normaderm

This La Roche-Posay product is our choice for the best salicylic acid face wash for all skin types. The Vichy Normaderm Deep Cleansing Gel Cleanser is specifically created for acne-prone and oily skin, using a healthy, safe combination of glycolic acid and salicylic acid.

The salicylic acid in here performs all the mild exfoliating action. The result of which is smoother and softer skin with a clear complexion. The face wash is in a transparent gel form, which feels incredibly refreshing and allows for a deep cleansing.

On top of that, the product is free of parabens, alcohol, and soap. It works great even on sensitive skin. So it’s time to purify your pores and remove all the excess sebum with the help of Vichy.

PROS

  • It effectively treats blemishes and bumps on sensitive skin.
  • The size of the bottle is quite large.
  • The scent is refreshingly spa-like.

CONS

  • Skin drying out is a possibility.

Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Fighting Facial Cleanser

Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash

Now here’s a salicylic acid face cleanser Neutrogena is very proud of. After all, it is highly recommended by dermatologists all around the world for fighting stubborn acne breakouts.

The formula is oil-free and it penetrates deep into your pores to clear them out. The salicylic acid gets in there for treating the acne you already have, while also preventing any future breakouts.

But what’s exceptional here is Neutrogena's MicroClear Technology which boosts salicylic acid delivery to the very source of your breakouts. It even dissolves oil, another source of clogged pores and acne. Now you know why Neutrogena is so proud of this acne-fighting facial cleanser.

PROS

  • The face wash removes dirt, sebum, and even makeup easily.
  • MicroClear technology boosts the effects of salicylic acid.
  • It’s the most suitable for oily skin.

CONS

  • Scent and color additives are a part of the formula.

Neutrogena Men Skin Clearing Daily Acne Face Wash

Neutrogena Men Skin Clearing Acne Wash

It’s time for yet another Neutrogena skin-clearing salicylic acid face wash. But this one’s specially designed for men. It clears existing breakouts and keeps new ones from coming to life.

And you know what; you can use the face wash right before shaving. Thanks to the Pro-Soothe technology, it shields your skin from potential shaving irritation. Another phenomenal characteristic is Helioplex technology, which provides both UVA and UVB sun protection.

So you can expect quite a lot from this daily acne-fighting face wash, since this Neutrogena oil-free acne facial cleanser may be one of the best salicylic acid face washes for men.

PROS

  • Salicylic acid actively treats and prevents breakouts.
  • It softens the hair before shaving.
  • The photostable formula provides long-lasting defense against the sun.

CONS

  • Consistency is too gloppy and thick.

Neutrogena Acne Proofing Daily Facial Gel Cleanser

Neutrogena Acne Proofing Gel Cleanser

Once again, Neutrogena steals the limelight. But what makes this facial gel cleanser different from the previous two? The fact that salicylic acid is added in maximum strength. So the part where it treats your acne and even prevents future breakouts gets amplified.

Here’s another thing that sets it apart from the others. The Neutrogena Acne Proofing Facial Gel Cleanser features ClearDefend. This particular technology preserves your skin’s natural, essential defenses. And that’s how your skin develops more resistance against acne.

It’s an oil-free gentle formula recommended by dermatologists, of course. Overall, the face wash is perfect for acne and oil control for many skin types.

PROS

  • Salicylic acid of maximum strength fights breakouts.
  • It doesn’t strip away essential barriers of the skin.
  • It reduces visible appearances of enlarged, inflamed pores.

CONS

  • Only suitable for mild acne.

Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne and Redness Facial Cleanser

Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne and Redness Facial Cleanser

Let’s jump right in. There are many new qualities to look forward to here. For one thing, this Neutrogena Facial Cleanser is green in color. What green represents over here is a combination of naturally derived chamomile and aloe. Both ingredients calm skin irritation and redness. So your skin not only looks clearer but also feels healthier.

It goes without saying that salicylic acid is a part of the acne-fighting formula. And so is the exclusive MicroClear technology of Neutrogena. It encourages better salicylic acid delivery to your clogged pores.

So once again, even this Neutrogena oil-free facial cleanser is highly recommended by dermatologists.

PROS

  • Chamomile and aloe offer skin-soothing properties.
  • MicroClear technology boosts the effects of salicylic acid.
  • It dulls redness to a great extent.

CONS

  • Not a safe choice for sensitive skin.

AcneFree 3 Step Acne Treatment Kit

AcneFree 3 Step Acne Treatment Kit

Simple question; what makes this so special? The AcneFree 3 Step Acne Treatment Kit consists of a cleanser, toner, and moisturizer specifically created for sensitive skin. So if your skin type falls in that category, you can rest assured knowing this skin care kit’s got you covered.

The 1.5-percent salicylic acid in the facial cleanser is just what you need to get rid of breakouts. And while doing so, it doesn’t destroy your skin’s natural barriers and nutrients.

As for the toner, it’s alcohol-free and packed with fruit enzymes. These enzymes are derived from the extracts of apple, orange, and lemon. There’s also tea tree extracts and ginger for soothing and hydrating your skin.

The third product is a gentle moisturizer equipped with 3-percent benzoyl peroxide. This particular active ingredient also works best on sensitive skin to treat acne continuously throughout your day.

Needless to say, the kit contains all the right products that come in contact with acne only to destroy it. This is why this is one of the best salicylic acid face washes outside of the Neutrogena brand.

PROS

  • Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are the active acne-fighting ingredients.
  • Gentle formula full of fruit enzymes for a soothing effect.
  • It offers complete protection even on sensitive skin.

CONS

  • Your skin might become dry.

InstaNatural Acne Face Wash with Salicylic Acid

InstaNatural Acne Face Wash

If you have acne-prone skin, then a special treatment is just what you need. The special treatment here comes in the form of the InstaNatural Acne Face Wash. The formula contains salicylic acid and natural extracts. This combination heals and treats breakouts while dissolving pore-clogging blackheads and skin cells.

There’s Vitamin E in here to balance out the effect of salicylic acid. This means your skin looks and even feels calm and soothing. But what’s a little breathtaking is that you can use this face wash to clear acne from your back, shoulders, and neck too. Not just the face!

PROS

  • Gel formula foams well to lift away oil and bacteria.
  • Natural ingredients like aloe vera, ginger extract, oat extract, etc.
  • Not tested on animals.

CONS

  • It treats acne but does not prevent future breakouts.

CeraVe Salicylic Acid Cleanser

CeraVe Salicylic Acid Cleanser

If you think I’m exaggerating when I say this is the best salicylic acid face wash, then maybe you ought to have a look at the reviews of this product on its Amazon page. The CeraVe Salicylic Acid Cleanser is a very popular choice when it comes to cleansing and soothing your skin. It eliminates oil and dirt while also softening the skin.

The ingredients present in here are Vitamin D, niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, and salicylic acid. All of them work very hard at cleansing and hydrating your skin. At the same time, there are essential ceramides that restore the natural barrier of your skin for protection.

You’ll also be quite thrilled to know that zero harsh microbeads are a part of the exfoliation. So no damage to the skin or the environment. The formula is also non-comedogenic, meaning it doesn’t clog pores. It’s fragrance-free, non-irritating, and non-drying too. Needless to say, your acne-prone skin is up for a treat.

PROS

  • Salicylic acid fights acne and softens skin.
  • Ceramides restore natural protection.
  • It’s a gentle formula friendly for the environment as well.

CONS

  • Not specifically created for extremely dry skin.

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Medicated Gel Acne Cleanser

La Roche-Posay Effaclar

Would you breathe a sigh of relief if I told you this medicated acne cleanser was created with the help of dermatologists? It contains 2-percent salicylic acid. This much is more than enough for targeting not only pimples and oil but also whiteheads and blackheads.

Every La Roche-Posay skincare product is clinically-tested, including this one. It has been proven to minimize excess oil by almost 50 percent. So your skin feels less oily all day long so long as you wash your face with this gel cleanser in the morning.

And guess what? It also contains lipo hydroxy acid. The micro-exfoliating action of this particular ingredient targets all your oily zones to deliver precise removal of dirt and debris.

Just use a pea-sized amount for drastic, noticeable results in only a matter of time.

PROS

  • Menthol is added to offer a cooling effect.
  • The formula works on mild and even hormonal acne.
  • It’s paraben-free, fragrance-free, and allergy-tested.

CONS

  • The gel is too watery, so you have to be careful when squeezing it out.
  • Dryness around the eyes might demand using an eye cream.

Paula’s Choice Clear Pore Normalizing Cleanser

Paula's Choice CLEAR

This cleanser by Paula’s Choice is formulated for any skin type struggling with clogged pores, bumpy skin, and oil. It’s the inclusion of salicylic acid that dissolves the pore-blocking impurities. So all unwanted effects like redness, blackheads, acne, dullness, etc. get eliminated.

The best part is that the cleanser consists of a refreshing, soothing gel to calm the skin. That means there’s no irritation. Even if your skin type is sensitive, dry, or combination!

There are no harsh ingredients such as menthol and alcohol either. And there’s 0.5-percent salicylic acid, which means a generous amount to do away with redness and stress caused by acne.

And believe it or not; this thing even works on stubborn blackheads that develop on thighs or any other part of the body. Now you know why I’m recommending it and why it’s one of Amazon’s top choices?

PROS

  • It reduces the severity of acne and the size of pores.
  • The gel formula is refreshing for a soothing effect.
  • Suitable for all skin types.

CONS

  • Not enough lather is produced.

Phisoderm Anti-Blemish Gel Cleanser

Phisoderm Anti-Blemish Gel Cleanser

How do I know this is an excellent acne-fighting cleanser? The first proof is the presence of 2-percent salicylic acid. This active ingredient goes a long way to treat breakouts and even prevent future ones.

I don’t need to tell you anymore how effective salicylic acid, even 2 percent of it, is when it comes to clearing out breakouts. The component penetrates deep into your pores. On top of that, it rinses easily without leaving any residue or dryness.

Another form of proof is the Skin Balancing technology this salicylic face wash is designed with. It gently cleanses your skin without destroying the natural protective barrier.

And lastly, this anti-blemish cleanser is dry-free, alcohol-free, soap-free, and oil-free. There’s no doubt the face wash keeps your breakouts down while also moisturizing your skin.

PROS

  • It’s a very gentle salicylic acid formula face wash for acne.
  • Consistency, even though thick, absorbs into your skin.
  • The moisturizing properties keep dryness away.

CONS

  • Not very suitable for the oily skin type.

Clean & Clear Oil-Free Deep Action Cream Facial Cleanser

Clean & Clear Oil-Free Deep Action Cream Cleanser

The thing about salicylic acid is that when used daily, it can clean your pores thoroughly to get rid of impurities from deep down. But can you use the Clean & Clear Facial Cleanser on an every day basis? Yes, the oil-free cream face wash is designed for daily cleansing.

It works the best on normal, combination, and oily skin. What the refreshing formula does is get into your pores to cleanse them of all the dirt, oil, and even makeup. The deep-cleansing action is so strong that your skin feels and looks smooth and healthy in only a few washes.

The cooling effect this facial cleanser offers is also another high takeaway. The mild refreshing mint tingle and scent are quite extraordinary. You’ll appreciate it more than you can imagine given how well it helps with breakouts.

PROS

  • It cleans pores from deep down.
  • Gentle cleansing action suitable for sensitive skin.
  • The formula gets rid of ingrown hair as well.

CONS

  • Not a completely oil-free face wash.

Replenix Acne Solutions Gly/Sal Exfoliating Acne Cleanser

Replenix GLY/SAL 10-2 Cleanser

When salicylic acid and glycolic acid combine, expect only the greatest skin benefits. That’s the beauty of Replenix Acne Solutions Exfoliating Cleanser. But before I get into the details, let me make one thing very clear. This salicylic face wash is perfect for daily use. It’s both gentle enough yet powerful for improving the health of your skin.

The glycolic acid in here promotes exfoliation and skin smoothness. It delivers only beneficial properties of skincare. As for salicylic acid, needless to say, the active ingredient unplugs follicles, unclogs pores, and removes excess oil.

On top of that, there are green tea antioxidants for soothing acne-prone skin. So it’s time to get rid of all those congested pores that have been wreaking havoc in your life.

PROS

  • Salicylic acid unclogs pores and glycolic acid promotes exfoliation.
  • Green tea softens and calms the skin.
  • Quantity is generous to last for months.

CONS

  • It dries out the skin.

Biore Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser

Bioré Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser

Everything about this salicylic acid face wash is unique. It’s an ice cleanser, meaning the formula stops your breakouts cold. And yes, it employs salicylic acid to get rid of 99 percent of oil and dirt. I would go as far as to declare that it’s also the best face wash for pimples and dark spots.

It targets impurities that give rise to blemishes. Meaning your potential breakouts don’t even get to see the light of day. This salicylic acid foaming face wash also clears up blackheads. And while doing so, the ice cleanser cools and invigorates the skin too.

It’s an oil-free, dermatologist-recommended skincare product you can incorporate into your every day routine.

PROS

  • The formula targets clogged pores.
  • The cooling sensation leaves skin feeling refreshed.
  • Light yet very effective exfoliation.

CONS

  • Cooling menthol/eucalyptus effect not good for sensitive skin.

Biore Charcoal Acne Clearing Cleanser

Bioré Charcoal Acne Clearing Cleanser

A natural salicylic acid face wash like this charcoal acne-clearing cleanser is a very effective acne-fighting tool. It eliminates blemishes, blackheads, and clogged pores like no other.

The cleanser is specifically created for those dealing with oily skin. It deep cleans by penetrating deep into your pores and absorbing all the excess oil. Such action is performed without drying out the skin or destroying its natural moisture.

But this is what salicylic acid does, right? What about charcoal, what does charcoal do here? Charcoal is a very powerful ingredient when it comes to absorbing oil. So when combined with salicylic acid, it purifies your skin further to prevent even potential breakouts.

All you need to do to see visible results is wait for only 2 days. But if you want such favorable results to become a part of your natural skin, you have to use the cleanser on a daily basis.

PROS

  • It’s the best face wash for getting rid of excess oil.
  • The blend of salicylic acid and charcoal purifies skin thoroughly.
  • It leaves a refreshing cooling sensation.

CONS

  • Exfoliating beads might feel harsh against the skin.
  • Not a great option for excessively dry skin.

Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Purifying Gel Cleanser

Burt's Bees Natural Acne Solutions

First off, this is a non-comedogenic salicylic acid gel cleanser. In simple words, the Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Face Wash doesn’t clog pores. Instead, the formula washes away impurities that cause acne. Impurities like excess oil and bacteria. And it does so without giving rise to any unwanted dryness or skin irritation.

Natural willow bark-derived salicylic acid is a part of the gel. It penetrates deeper to reach your clogged pores and reduce acne. Along with preventing breakouts as well by the way! What’s also added is extracts of beetroot and primrose. Needless to say, it’s a natural cleanser made for soothing the most acne-prone type of skin.

Plus, you can just use the tiniest amount. A single bottle lasts for as long as 2-3 months. So you don’t run out of it soon. Thanks to the thin, concentrated formula. It’s so refreshing you might not want to run the risk of trying any other salicylic acid-infused face wash.

PROS

  • The formula removes blackheads and dead skin cells.
  • It contains phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
  • A single bottle can last for 2 to 3 whole months.

CONS

  • Only works on light to moderate acne.

Mario Badescu Acne Facial Cleanser

Mario Badescu Acne Facial Cleanser

No other face wash has the ability to prevent pore congestion better than the Acne Facial Cleanser by Mario Badescu. The formula is packed with four very beneficial ingredients. These include salicylic acid, chamomile, aloe vera, and thyme.

Salicylic acid reduces acne to promote even-looking, clear skin. Chamomile conditions and calms for a healthy complexion. Thyme clarifies the skin the most naturally. And aloe vera hydrates, re-balances, and soothes your skin.

So you only need to know the list of natural ingredients to believe that the face wash is a true miracle. One that solves the most common types of skin issues like acne, redness, blemishes, uneven skin complexion, etc.

PROS

  • It decreases acne without any dryness or irritation.
  • Natural ingredients like chamomile, aloe vera, and thyme included.
  • The formula is extremely gentle to leave the skin moisturized.

CONS

  • Not fit for sensitive skin.
  • Foaming capacity is low.

Skyn Iceland Glacial Face Wash

skyn ICELAND Glacial Face Wash

Even face washes equipped with salicylic acid can indeed leave your skin feeling hydrated. I mean not all salicylic acid facial cleansers make dry out your skin after every wash. And the Skyn Iceland Glacial Face Wash is proof.

It’s formulated using beneficial botanicals and glacial waters. The latter is Icelandic Kelp that revitalizes the skin and fights inflammation. As for the beneficial botanicals, you get willow bark, cylindrical seed oil, amino acids, and oats.

The willow bark is where salicylic acid is derived from. Cylindrical seed destroys free radicals and repairs lipid barrier. And oats and amino acid surfactants provide gentle cleansing.

So there’s more than just acne-fighting action going on here. The glow and balance of your skin get restored as well.

PROS

  • It’s a mild cleanser to purify and detoxify.
  • Gentle, well-balanced formula with botanical ingredients.
  • Very fresh and light scent.

CONS

  • Too watery consistency doesn’t produce thick, rich foam.

Lavo Glycolic Acid Face Wash

LAVO Glycolic Acid Face Wash

What’s the magic formula here made up of? The Lavo Face Wash contains a combination of lactic acid, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid. Such a blend penetrates deep into your pores and dissolves the dead and damaged skin cells. Once all these acne-triggering impurities are eliminated, your pores get the freedom to finally breathe.

There are papaya and pineapple enzymes in here too. They also exfoliate dead skin. Then there’s antioxidant-rich watercress extract. It helps in repairing UV damage and fighting carcinogens.

Lavo also decided to add Vitamin B and lavender that regulate the production of sebum. Together, these two reduce inflammation and fight acne-causing bacteria as well. And lastly, soapwort extract has also been included to produce mild lather and dissolve any leftover excess oil.

You can use it no matter your gender. To eliminate skin concerns like clogged pores, whiteheads, blackheads, blemishes, excess oil, and acne of course. And the cherry on the cake is that the bottle is generously-sized.

PROS

  • The formula contains salicylic acid along with antioxidants and vitamins.
  • Also works as an effective makeup remover.
  • It has a menthol/minty fragrance.

CONS

  • The face wash leaves heavy residue post-wash.

Aveeno Clear Complexion Foaming Oil-Free Facial Cleanser

Aveeno Clear Complexion Foaming Oil-Free Facial Cleanser

Now here’s a brand that values natural ways for transforming and nourishing the skin. Aveeno’s Oil-Free Facial Cleanser is a gentle foaming formula that treats and prevents breakouts without causing any unnecessary dryness. The formula, just by the way, has a moisture-rich content of soy.

Soy has been a part of many skin care products for many years to minimize skin discoloration. Soybeans retain protein integrity for providing long-lasting skin benefits. So you can expect this face wash to make your dull and uneven skin to look more radiant and brighter.

The salicylic acid in here does not disappoint when it comes to treating and clearing up blemishes. It’s a hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic cleanser that dermatologists recommend for acne-prone or damaged skin all across the globe.

PROS

  • Soy ingredient is moisture-rich for improving skin tone.
  • The cleansing action is gentle for everyday use.
  • It treats hormonal and stress acne.

CONS

  • Pump tends to get clogged frequently.
  • The fragrance aggravates sensitive skin.

Salicylic Acid: What is it?

Ever heard of beta hydroxy acid or BHA? If yes, then that’s what salicylic acid is. It’s either biosynthesized from willow tree or a naturally derived beta hydroxy acid. Salicylic acid is not like water-soluble AHAs. BHAs have an oil-soluble quality. Meaning they have the ability to penetrate deeper and get into the pores.

Beta hydroxy acids lightly exfoliate the top layers of the skin while traveling deeper. And it’s in the pores where exfoliation for eliminating dead skin cells and oil takes place.

No wonder salicylic acid face wash is so effective when it comes to treating acne. It even works on deep-seated blackheads and active whiteheads.

You might also like to know that salicylic acid does more than just treat acne. It has excellent anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties too. And these help in preventing the formation of new breakouts.

So how much salicylic acid is recommended for skincare? The majority of the best salicylic acid face washes contain anywhere between 1% and 10% of salicylic acid. But the safest amount is 2%. A higher concentration does not produce any extra or better results.

Also, please note that pregnant women are highly advised to keep away from face and body washes that contain salicylic acid or BHA.

Salicylic Acid Face Washes: Effects on the Skin

Yes, it clears up acne. But that’s not it. A face wash with salicylic acid offers many other benefits too. And here they are:

  • It exfoliates the skin gently to unclog pores and get rid of dead or damaged skin cells.
  • It reduces the stubborn appearance of blemishes and scars.
  • It dials down skin inflammation just after a single wash.
  • It opens up your pores and keeps them clean to prevent the development of further breakouts and blackheads.
  • It slows down the aging process the most naturally.
  • It dissolves warts to make your skin look naturally clear, soft, and beautiful.
  • It reduces excess oil without destroying the skin’s natural barrier.
  • It nourishes your skin, thus making it look and feel hydrated and moisturized.

Salicylic Acid Face Washes: Potential Side Effects

Now let’s not deny that even safe products are likely to give rise to a few negative reactions. So here are some common side effects that may or may not occur due to using salicylic acid face wash.

  • It tends to dry out the skin. So you have to make an effort to moisturize and even apply sunscreen afterward.
  • Regular use can also darken and discolor the skin.
  • If you have sensitive skin, it’s best to stay away from salicylic acid.

Salicylic Acid vs. Benzoyl Peroxide: What is Better?

Even benzoyl peroxide is very effective when it comes to treating and preventing acne. So should you pick a face wash with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide?

One thing not many people know about benzoyl peroxide is that it tends to dry out the skin more than salicylic acid. So if you have sensitive skin, the former might cause severe irritation.

Benzoyl peroxide also leaves a stain on your clothes and hair. So you have to be very careful when using a face wash with benzoyl peroxide. You should rinse your hands properly.

As for deciding what the better option for you is, here’s something that might help.

Choose based on the Type of breakouts

If you have to constantly deal with whiteheads and blackheads, then salicylic acid delivers more favorable results. But it’s benzoyl peroxide that works the best for moderate pustules.

Choose Based on the Severity of Acne

Both salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide contribute to treating mild breakouts. And once again, both take a few weeks to show noticeable improvements. However, benzoyl peroxide has proven to take effect sooner than salicylic acid.

So if emergency treatment is what you demand, you know what to pick.

Choose Based on Daily Activity Levels

Are you a very active person? Meaning do you sweat a lot during your normal day? If yes, then maybe you’d like to know that your sweat increases the chances of benzoyl peroxide staining your clothes.

So how about using it only at night? Or better yet, buying a face wash equipped with salicylic acid instead.

Choose Based on Skin Health

This brings into the picture only one very common question. Do you have sensitive skin? Positive? Then your skin type would be better off with milder salicylic acid. It’s because benzoyl peroxide triggers skin sensitivities.

Salicylic Acid vs. Glycolic Acid: What is Better?

Just like salicylic acid, even glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid. But both of them don’t tackle the same skin issues. However, they do gently exfoliate and penetrate your skin. Both are active ingredients you should use with care. Only then can you expect to see significant, long-lasting improvements in your complexion and skin texture.

Glycolic acid is a water-soluble AHA. And salicylic acid is oil-soluble. The concentration of the former is higher in face and body washes. It’s between 5% and 30%, in comparison to salicylic acid’s concentration of 1% to 10%. The higher the quantity of glycolic acid, the more favorable the results. Unlike salicylic acid!

Now let’s compare the two in terms of how they perform.

For acne-prone and oily skin, most forms of alpha hydroxy acids are suitable. But if the priority is protection against sun damage or hydration, then you should pick glycolic acid.

As for acne, salicylic acid works the best. It penetrates the top layers of the skin to travel deep into the pores. The penetration is deeper than glycolic acid, which means better at targeting acne from the very source.

Now you might not know this but there are many face and body washes that contain both. Obviously, the concentration is low. 1 percent of salicylic acid and 10 percent of glycolic acid along with botanical ingredients make up the best combination for treating and preventing acne. Even the anti-inflammatory benefits on acne lesions are more powerful.

Salicylic Acid Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How to Use Salicylic Acid Face Wash Properly?

The way you wash your face with a salicylic acid-equipped face wash does matter indeed.

Cleanse the skin with the face wash twice a day. Once first thing in the morning and then the last thing in the night. Use cool or lukewarm water to wash your face. Avoid too cold or too hold water. So your skin doesn’t get the chance to overreact and produce more oil.

After washing, please don’t rub your skin with the towel to dry it. Pat it instead. This goes a long way when it comes to reducing irritation.

Now is the time to apply a good face moisturizer. Never neglect this step, no matter how oily or acne-prone your skin type. When the skin is hydrated enough, the likelihood of developing acne and blemishes gets cut down.

Q. How to Apply Salicylic Acid Face Wash?

If you don’t want potential side effects to take form, it’s best to follow proper instructions.

Start by using the face wash twice a day. The first time you can wash in the morning and then at night. But if you plan on using it only once, then before bedtime is the most preferable.

Allow the face wash to get absorbed into your skin by leaving it on for at least 1 minute. After that, wash it off gently using warm water.

Q. How Often to Use Salicylic Acid Face Wash?

Active ingredients like salicylic acid have a very powerful impact on your skin quality and texture. So it’s only natural to assume that salicylic acid can also irritate the skin. All the more reason to include it in your daily skincare routine slowly and carefully!

If you’re a very cautious person, then start by using it only 2-3 times per week. Wash your face with it and then let your skin decide how it wants to react for 1 or 2 days. If there’s any irritation, redness, or itching during this time, you know your skin is not okay with the face wash.

On the other hand, when the skin doesn’t trigger such sensitivities, it means you can use the salicylic acid face wash on a daily basis. Twice a day is the best way to go about it. You can wash once after you wake up and once before bedtime.

Q. What are the Cautions of Using Salicylic Acid?

If you have aspirin allergies, avoid salicylic acid face wash.

If you’re pregnant, avoid not only salicylic acid but also all alpha hydroxy acids.

And if you’re on any blood thinner medication, then also avoid products with salicylic acid.

Q. Why Choose Salicylic Acid and not Face Scrubs with Exfoliators?

Salicylic acid face washes enjoy the upper hand because they exfoliate gently. Scrubs with exfoliators, on the contrary, are harsh on your skin. The former might take longer than the latter when it comes to unclogging and shrinking pores. But it gets the job done eventually.

On top of that, salicylic acid also reduces inflammation while preventing the formation of further acne.

Key Takeaway

Needless to say, the ingredient salicylic acid is a part of many acne-fighting face and body care products. This particular alpha hydroxy acid treats all kinds of acne. And it does more than just treat breakouts.

The component prevents further formation of acne. Along with offering anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties! And slowing down aging, reducing marks and blemishes, and clearing complexion, etc.

Pimples and age have nothing to do with one another. So you don’t have to belong to any particular age category either to use salicylic acid face wash. It’s a universal product that works like magic as far as fighting acne is concerned.

About the author 

Lydia

My name is Lydia Adams and I have been a skincare blogger in one way or another for many, many years.

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