Every skincare product, from serums, cleansers, toners, to moisturizers have some or other form of acid. And there are two most popular acids that you’ll frequently spot in — glycolic and salicylic acid. These acids are mild exfoliants that help to fight acne and breakouts. Each of these holds a valuable position and knowing their difference helps to achieve visible results!
What is glycolic acid?
Glycolic acid is an organic compound that belongs to the group of AHAs (alpha-hydroxy acids). It’s water-soluble and naturally occurs in beets, sugarcanes, lemons, melons, and pineapples. AHAs loosen the glue that holds skin cells together and facilitates the exfoliation of the top layers of your dead skin. They encourage cell renewal and can be used regularly to treat and reduce pigmentation, scars, fine lines and wrinkles.
Benefits of glycolic acid
It works through the process of exfoliation. When you apply it to your skin, it breaks the bond of the outer layer of your skin cells and triggers the cell renewal process. Here’s everything that it can do.
- Promotes even skin tone
Did you know that one of the major root causes of uneven skin tone is UV rays? We can’t pressurize more than not wearing enough sunscreen and not using one can lead to uneven skin texture. And glycolic acid sloughs away the top layer of dead skin cells while increasing skin’s resilience against all environmental aggressors. And this makes your skin even toned and brighter.
- Treats and prevents acne
If you have acne-prone skin, you must invest in glycolic acid. Acne occurs when our pores get clogged with makeup, dirt, oil, bacteria and other impurities. With regular use, the exfoliating property of glycolic acid will melt down your acne and even pesky acne scars. Also, it will lead to fewer breakouts and acne over time.
- Reduces the appearance of large pores and fine lines
Glycolic acid helps to diminish the early signs of ageing and if you’re dealing with premature ageing it will benefit you. It helps to boost collagen levels which are essential in keeping your skin supple and healthy. Moreover, glycolic acid has the ability to boost your collagen production as it is great for those who are prone to enlarged pores. It also stimulates the collagen production and shrinks those pesky pores.
- Treats hyperpigmentation
One of the common skincare concerns is hyperpigmentation. It helps to exfoliate the top layer of your skin and reduces the marks left behind by ageing and sun damage.
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What is salicylic acid?
Also an exfoliating agent, salicylic acid is a BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acid) that is either naturally derived or biosynthesized from the bark of the willow tree. It’s oil-soluble, meaning it can penetrate deep into your skin surface and pores. It is ideal for oily, acne-prone and combination skin as the molecule size is slightly larger than glycolic making it less irritating for your skin.
Benefits of salicylic acid
It works on the surface of your skin but also goes deeper into the pores to remove excess sebum and dirt. Here are some of the benefits of salicylic acid that will give your skin the utmost healthy glow if you add this skincare acid to your regime.
- Reduces blackheads & whiteheads
Salicylic acid goes beneath the surface of your skin to remove excess debris from the pores. These pores get clogged when excess dirt, sebum, and hair follicles are mixed, which ultimately leads to whiteheads and blackheads. This dampens skin’s glow and texture. Salicylic acid deeply clears your pores to provide you with clean and healthy-looking skin.
- Prevents acne
Salicylic acid works into deeper layers of your skin by clearing pores, hence you’ll experience fewer breakouts. The soothing properties of salicylic acid, helps to reduce redness and the pain associated with pimples.
- Controls excess sebum and oil production
Salicylic acid, a powerful BHA regulates the production of sebum while preventing the skin from getting excessively oily. It works best for those with acne-prone, oily and combination skin.
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Both glycolic and salicylic acid have the same effect on your acne but the latter is considered the best choice. Salicylic acid can go deeper and work on the root cause to reduce breakout, while glycolic acid works on the surface of the skin to exfoliate. So, based on your skin’s need, pick an acid and watch the problem recede!