Benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid both have exfoliating effects, and using them at the same time can overdry the skin. The good news is, using these two topical anti-acne ingredients on alternating days is a magically effective combination!
Your treatment plan could very well include both salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide at the same time. However, applying both products on the same area of skin — even at different times of day — can increase your risk for excessive drying, redness, and peeling.
If your acne tends to be inflammatory, such as papules and pustules, opt for benzoyl peroxide to stop outbreaks at the source. For sensitive skin, start with salicylic acid, since it's less likely to cause irritation.
Your treatment plan could include salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide at the same time, but it is best to space them out to decrease your risk for peeling, redness, dermatitis and drying. Doctors suggests switching between products every night, or using one in the AM and the other in the night.
Benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid topical can cause a rare but serious allergic reaction or severe skin irritation. These reactions may occur just a few minutes after you apply the medicine, or within a day or longer afterward.
Don't Mix: Benzoyl peroxide with retinol, acne prescription tretinoin with caution. As previously mentioned, benzoyl peroxide and retinol can deactivate one another when used together. While prescription acne treatments can be used with BP, tretinoin requires extra care.
Research on the chemical differences between these two acne-fighting agents has shown that salicylic acid opens the pores and has a bit of a sloughing, exfoliating effect. However, benzoyl peroxide is superior for treating acne because it has an anti-microbial effect and a better antioxidant effect.
If you're new to benzoyl peroxide, start with once a day only. Gradually work your way up to morning and night applications. If you use a retinoid or retinol product at night, apply benzoyl peroxide only in the mornings. This will prevent irritation and other side effects.
Day or Night (With One Exception)
Often found spot treatments and acne-focused skincare products, benzoyl peroxide is generally okay to use either in the morning or night, with one exception. "Benzoyl peroxide can be used during the daytime, but is often combined into formulations with other acne-fighting retinoids.
Adapalene and benzoyl peroxide combination is used to treat acne. It works by killing the bacteria that cause acne and by keeping the skin pores clean (tiny openings on the skin).
Products containing Niacinamide are fantastic to pair with dehydrating ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or retinols to balance the skin.
By using a salicylic acid enriched wash after cleansing the skin of any remaining makeup, you are helping to rid the skin of any dead skin cell build-up allowing any nourishing products applied afterwards to absorb quicker into the lower layers of the skin and show results quicker.
Is it okay to use salicylic acid every day? While it is okay to use salicylic acid every day, it could cause irritation. Many dermatologists, therefore, recommend using the acid in moderation, beginning by applying it three times a week and working up from there.
These serious side effects are rare and happen in less than 1 in 1,000 people. Stop using benzoyl peroxide if: the skin that you're treating becomes swollen. you get blisters on your skin.
Around eight to 10 weeks after you start using the product, your skin should be much clearer. You'll still have the odd spot or two. If the treatment didn't work as well as you wanted, it's a good idea to visit a dermatologist. A prescription treatment might work better.
During the first 3 weeks you are using benzoyl peroxide, your skin may become irritated. Also, your acne may seem to get worse before it gets better. If your skin problem has not improved within 4 to 6 weeks, check with your doctor.
Products with salicylic acid can be used either morning or night. When using products with salicylic acid during the day, it is recommended to apply a daily SPF as the last step in your skincare regimen.
Like I mentioned earlier, salicylic acid and sulfur won't help cystic acne. It can make it even worse if it dries out or irritates your skin.
Consider any medicines and skin care products you already use. Some may make your skin more sensitive, such as prescription retinoid creams or products containing retinol or benzoyl peroxide. Exfoliating while using these products can trigger acne breakouts or excessive dryness.
“10 per cent strengths of benzoyl peroxide are often considered too irritating and might have side effects such as dry, flaky skin and possibly more breakouts. I recommend starting with a 2.5 per cent concentration applied twice daily and waiting a few weeks to see how your acne responds.”
Can niacinamide and salicylic acid be used together? The simple answer is yes. They complement each other well. Being oil soluble, salicylic acid can penetrate deeper into the skin layers, but it can also dehydrate and irritate skin.
Benzoyl Peroxide + AHAs/BHAs (Exfoliating Acids)
Both salicylic acid (a BHA) and benzoyl peroxide are effective against acne, but using them at the same time can lead to excessively dry skin. Try using them on alternating nights instead for an equally effective anti-acne regimen!
“AHAs and BHAs can certainly be combined. For example, for oily skin, a salicylic-based cleanser can be used followed by a glycolic acid toner.
Acne treatments — especially those that contain active ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid — are drying and a bit harsh on your skin. If you use too many treatments at the same time, your skin may become irritated, and you may actually suffer more breakouts as a result.