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Salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid are two popular skincare ingredients that have a range of benefits for the skin. salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid that helps to exfoliate the skin and remove dead cells, while hyaluronic acid is a humectant that helps to retain moisture in the skin. These two powerful ingredients are commonly found in skincare products such as cleansers, toners, serums, and moisturizers. But you might be wondering if you can use salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid together? Keep on reading to find out if you can use these two ingredients together in your routine.
What Is Salicylic Acid
Salicylic acid is a type of beta hydroxy acid (BHA) that is derived from willow bark. It has been used for centuries as an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever. The active ingredient in aspirin, acetylsalicylic acid, is a synthetic form of salicylic acid.
It’s one of the most common ingredients in acne-fighting products, both OTC and prescription products.
Salicylic acid works by dissolving the “glue” that holds dead skin cells together. This action helps to open clogged pores and prevents new ones from forming. It also has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that can help to reduce redness and swelling associated with acne.
What makes it so incredible for acne and oily skin is that it’s an oil-soluble ingredient which means it can cut through all the oils on your skin and penetrate deeper into your pores to unclog and prevent acne.
Salicylic acid can help to dissolve dead skin cells and unclog pores, decrease blackheads, regulate oil production, and shrink pores. BHA’s are capable of going deep into the pore and cleaning it out, making them superior for treating acne than glycolic or other AHA’s.
Benefits Of Salicylic Acid
- Treats active acne – salicylic acid has anti-inflammatory properties which helps to decrease inflammation associated with pimples and can help to heal them quicker
- Prevents acne – BHA can treat active acne, but it also prevents new acne from forming by killing acne causing bacteria, balancing oil production and unclogging pores. It’s a comedolytic agent which means it prevents comedolytic acne like blackheads or closed comedones
- Smooths skin – salicylic acid is a keratolytic agent which means it can break down the outer layer of dead skin. This can help with stubborn closed comedones and smooth out rough skin texture
- Decreases oil production – salicylic acid is known for its ability to help balance and regulate oil production. It does so by regulating sebocytes, which are the cells that produce the sebum on your skin
- Minimizes pores – salicylic acid helps to keep pores clear and when pores are clear, they appear smaller
What Is Hyaluronic Acid
Although it has acid in the same, hyaluronic acid isn’t actually an acid. Hyaluronic acid is a sugar molecule that is naturally produced by the bodies to hydrate our skin, joints and eyes.
Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, meaning it attracts water and helps the skin to retain moisture. It can hold up to 1000x its weight in water making it an extremely powerful hydrating ingredient.
When applied topically, hyaluronic acid creates a plump, hydrated and youthful appearance within seconds. It provides a temporary plumping effect that can help to minimize pores, fine lines and wrinkles.
It’s found in most skincare products from toners to moisturizers because of its incredible benefits for the skin. Hyaluronic acid can help to stimulate collagen production, smooth and plump skin, and deeply hydrate which can keep your skin barrier healthy and strong.
Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid
While hyaluronic acid has some incredible benefits, its main benefit is keeping the skin hydrated. It doesn’t have as many benefits of niacinamide, but it’s still an incredible skincare ingredient that everyone can benefit from. Here is where hyaluronic acid really shines:
- Hydration – as mentioned earlier, HA can keep skin hydrated by holding lots of water. This helps to plump the skin and prevent transepidermal water loss
- Heals Wounds – it’s been found that hyaluronic acid can also help speed up wound healing from cuts to acne. It does so by regulating the levels of inflammation in the skin and promoting tissue repair
- Smooths texture – A study found that topical HA helped significantly improve rough skin texture
- Anti-aging – Hyaluronic acid helps to diminish fine lines and wrinkles by plumping the skin
- Stimulates collagen – HA is also involved in collagen synthesis, which over time, can help reduce wrinkles, sagging skin, increase firmness and elasticity
- Helps Acne – It’s been found that HA may indirectly help with acne thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties
- Strengthen’s the skin barrier – HA helps to keep the skin’s protective barrier strong so it can defend itself against irritants and pathogens while protecting skin against damage
Related post: Does Hyaluronic Acid Help Acne?
Salicylic Acid And Hyaluronic Acid
Now that we know all about the incredible benefits of salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid, you’re probably wanting to introduce both of these ingredients into your skincare routine pronto. But before we do, can salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid be used together? How do you layer them? Let’s dive in and find out how to use both of these ingredients together in your routine.
Can you use salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid together?
Both salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid are incredible ingredients that can offer a multitude of benefits for the skin but can they be used together? The answer is yes! In fact, these two ingredients complement each other perfectly.
Salicylic acid helps to clear out pores and fight acne while hyaluronic acid can help to hydrate the skin to keep it from getting too dried out from the salicylic acid. When used together, these two ingredients can help to give you clear, hydrated and healthy skin.
How To Use Salicylic Acid And Hyaluronic Acid Together
Now let’s find out how to use salicylic acid with hyaluronic acid. It will depend a little on what types of products you are using (serums, toners, etc).
Hyaluronic acid is best used on damp skin which helps it to attract and hold onto water. Salicylic acid, on the other hand, is best used on dry skin. This is important because the water can help the product penetrate deeper into the skin, which is good thing for hyaluronic acid but not so much salicylic acid as it can cause irritation and dryness.
So what does that mean for using hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid together? Don’t fret, you can still use these ingredients in the same routine.
As always, you’ll want to follow the thinnest to thickest rule, which means you need to apply the thinnest product first, followed by the thicker products. This prevents any pilling and ensures that each product can penetrate the skin and do its job properly.
So if you’re using a salicylic acid serum and a hyaluronic acid serum, you would use whichever product is thinner.
For example, if the salicylic acid serum is thinner, you would wash and dry your face as usual and wait a few minutes before applying your salicylic acid serum to ensure your skin is good and dry. Once you apply the salicylic acid serum, wait a few more minutes before applying the hyaluronic acid serum. You can use a facial mist to dampen the skin before applying to help it penetrate better.
If your hyaluronic acid serum is thinner, wash your face as normal and don’t pat dry and go ahead and apply your hyaluronic acid serum. Wait a few minutes for it to fully absorb and then apply your salicylic acid.
These guidelines can be used no matter what kind of product you are using, whether it’s salicylic acid toner and a hyaluronic acid moisturizer – just follow the rules above and you’ll be good to go!
Do I use hyaluronic acid before or after salicylic acid?
This is a common question and it really depends on the type of product you are using.
As we mentioned before, salicylic acid should be used on dry skin while hyaluronic acid should be used on damp skin. So if you’re using a salicylic acid toner and a hyaluronic acid serum, you’ll want to apply the toner first, followed by the serum.
Salicylic Acid And Hyaluronic Acid Order
While many actives tend to have a specific order they need to be applied in, especially if you’re combining different acids. However, since hyaluronic acid isn’t actually an active, there’s no need to worry about the order in which you use it. You can apply it before or after other actives without any issues.
The same goes for salicylic acid, although it’s always best to follow the general rule of thinnest to thickest when layering products.
There is no set order that you have to apply salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid in. It all depends on the products you are using and your skin.
Can I use hyaluronic acid after salicylic acid face wash?
Yes, you can use hyaluronic acid after salicylic acid face wash. In fact, using hyaluronic acid after any kind of cleansing is a good idea as it can help to replenish the skin’s moisture levels and prep the skin for the rest of your skincare routine.
Can salicylic acid be used with hyaluronic acid and vitamin C?
Yes, salicylic acid can be used with hyaluronic acid and vitamin C without any issues. However, do keep in mind that salicylic acid and vitamin c are powerful actives so it’s always best to start slow and build up to using them together.
Vitamin C is best used in the morning and salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid can be used anytime, so I would recommend using Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid in the morning and Salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid at night. This will just help prevent any irritation and dryness.
Can You Use Salicylic Acid With Hyaluronic Acid? Wrap Up
When salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid are used together, they can create a powerhouse duo that can help to clear up acne, hydrate the skin and give you overall healthier skin. Salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid are two powerful ingredients that can be used together in your skincare routine for amazing results. In fact, it’s one of the best duos you can use, especially for those with oily skin! Salicylic acid helps to unclog pores and clear skin, while hyaluronic acid hydrates and reduces any irritation from the salicylic acid. These two ingredients can be used together in your routine and can be layered together easily, morning and night.