Many topical acne treatments contain ingredients like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or other acids that can be harsh on your skin.
The key to using these products is to layer them correctly so you get the best results without experiencing too much irritation.
Here’s how to layer salicylic acid in a skincare routine and what salicylic acid can and cannot be layered with.
What Can You Layer With Salicylic Acid?
The following is a list of skincare products that you can layer with salicylic acid.
1. Vitamin C Serum
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps to lighten acne scars and prevent new breakouts from forming.
You can find vitamin C in many different forms, including serums, gels and creams.
You can also use vitamin C to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by boosting collagen production.
Retinoids are one of the most effective treatments for acne because they help to unclog pores and reduce inflammation.
They also help to treat fine lines and wrinkles as well as hyperpigmentation (sun damage).
Retinoids should only be used at night because they can cause sensitivity when exposed to sunlight.
If you’re using salicylic acid as an exfoliant in an acne treatment regimen, make sure you’re also using a moisturizer every day.
This will prevent dryness from occurring on your skin as a side effect of salicylic acid use and help soothe any irritation it does cause.
Both salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide (BPO) can cause photosensitivity in the skin that makes it more susceptible to sunburns.
Make sure you wear sunscreen every day when using these two ingredients in conjunction with each other or independently.
5. BPO cleanser
Benzoyl peroxide can be used as a spot treatment but also works well as a cleanser.
Just apply it directly onto your face after washing and leave it on for five minutes before rinsing off with water.
6. Facial Cleanser
The first step to fighting acne is to clean your face. A good facial cleanser will remove dirt, oil, and makeup without drying out your face.
Look for a cleanser that contains salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, which are proven acne-fighters.
If you have dry skin, look for a formula that contains hyaluronic acid — a humectant that helps draw moisture into the skin.
Exfoliating once or twice a week can help unclog pores and remove dead skin cells that can clog pores and cause acne.
You can use an exfoliant in the form of facial scrubs, glycolic acid pads, or chemical peels.
Salicylic acid naturally occurs in many fruits and vegetables, including apples and potatoes, but it’s also added to some over-the-counter products (including some toothpastes) as well as prescription medications designed for treatment of acne vulgaris.
How to Layer Salicylic Acid in Your Skincare Routine
It’s important to use salicylic acid correctly in your skincare routine to get the best results. Here are 10 steps on how to layer salicylic acid in your skincare routine:
Use a toner with salicylic acid (optional)
Apply active ingredients like retinoids or azelaic acid
Apply a moisturizer with salicylic acid in it (optional)
Apply overnight cream containing salicylic acid (optional)
Use an SPF 30+ sunscreen daily (optional)
Use blotting papers instead of powder makeup during the day if you have oily skin (optional)
Avoid harsh scrubs or physical exfoliants (optional)
Don’t forget about sun protection
Salicylic acid can be used in conjunction with many other products and ingredients, but it’s important to know what works best for your skin.
We hope our guide has given you some ideas about how to make the most of this powerful ingredient.