Salicylic acid, classified as a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA), has gained FDA approval for use in skincare products available both in dermatology clinics and mainstream beauty stores. It serves as an exfoliant and is praised for its ability to keep pores clean and free of excess oil. However, it’s important to note that not everyone benefits equally from this ingredient, particularly those with dry to normal skin who may not require such intensive cleansing and exfoliation.

What is salicylic acid?

Salicylic acid cleanser, classified as a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA), has garnered FDA approval for inclusion in skincare products available in both dermatology clinics and mainstream beauty aisles. Functioning as an exfoliating agent, it is celebrated for its capacity to maintain clean and unclogged pores while effectively eliminating surplus oil. However, it’s essential to recognize that not everyone may benefit from this ingredient, especially those with dry to normal skin types who may not necessitate such intensive cleansing and chemical exfoliation.

Benefits of salicylic acid for skin

This product boasts a range of beneficial qualities for your skin. Firstly, it effectively exfoliates the skin, helping to remove dead cells and promote a healthier complexion.

• Eliminates dead skin cells: 

If you’re facing persistent acne issues, excess oil might not be the sole culprit. When your skin pores get congested with a buildup of dead skin cells, one effective solution is to employ a chemical exfoliant that penetrates deep into the pores. In such situations, salicylic acid can perform this task effectively.

• Maintains pore cleanliness: 

Salicylic acid acts as a protective barrier for your pores, preventing new layers of dead skin cells from adhering to the microscopic walls within your pores. This process is akin to how more potent products containing benzoyl peroxide are used to address even more severe instances of acne and pore blockages.

• Creates an environment unsuitable for acne: 

acne-causing bacteria flourish in oxygen-deprived settings, which is why they proliferate rapidly in blocked skin pores. By allowing these areas to be exposed to the air’s oxygen, it becomes more challenging for the bacteria to multiply and establish a lasting presence in your skin. However, it’s important to note that this advantage doesn’t entirely eradicate the bacteria but rather makes it more difficult for breakouts to become severe.

• Additionally, it possesses antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which can be particularly advantageous in combating various skin issues.

5 Ways to Use Salicylic Acid Cleansers in Your Skin Care Routine

1. To treat spots: 

Apply spot treatment to clean skin as a targeted solution, then follow up with a moisturiser for added hydration.

2. Face wash: 

You should use a cleanser once or twice daily, depending on your skin’s tolerance. Avoid using salicylic acid near the eyes, as it can be irritating to this sensitive area. Gently smooth the serum onto clean skin. Be cautious about using it alongside other potent activities such as alpha-hydroxy acids and retinoids.

3. Moisturiser: 

Apply moisturiser to clean skin. Pay attention to any other active products you’ve already applied, especially the serum. Use a mask once or twice a week for a deeper treatment targeting spots and blemishes.

4. Sunscreen: 

Whenever you intend to go outdoors during daylight hours, even on overcast days, it’s important to apply sunscreen. This practice not only safeguards your skin from premature signs of ageing but also provides protection for your sensitive skin, especially if you use salicylic acid regularly.

5. Skin toner: 

Apply toner or liquid exfoliant using your fingers or a cotton pad. This should be done once or twice a day after cleansing, depending on the formula’s consistency.

Moreover, it has the ability to regulate excess oil production, making it a suitable option for individuals with different skin types. Whether you have dry, oily, or combination skin, this product offers versatile benefits for all.


Salicylic acid offers a range of skin benefits, from effective exfoliation to maintaining pore cleanliness and creating an unsuitable environment for acne-causing bacteria. Its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties make it a valuable tool for addressing various skin issues. Plus, it’s versatile enough to suit different skin types. When incorporating salicylic acid into your skincare routine, remember the various ways to use it, including spot treatment, face wash, moisturiser, sunscreen, and toner, to help achieve healthier and clearer skin.