Jump to content
Acne.org
Search In
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
austra

Question For Those Who Use Salicylic Acid

Recommended Posts

Hey there. I've been using Dianne Yvonne's 5% salicylic acid for about a week now to treat some closed comedones on my cheeks. I've been applying it every evening with a q-tip as a spot treatment, however on fairly wide areas. Before I've used Paula's Choice 2% BHA intermittently for a couple of weeks. My skin hasn't seemed too irritated by the acid, so I haven't washed it off, but let it stay on my skin over night.

The reason I started this topic is the effect the salicylic acid has had on my skin. It has become very dry, wrinkly, scaly and thick with a kind of orange-peel texture on those areas where I've applied SA. It looks quite horrendous, to be honest. :( If the skin would peel off soon, this wouldn't really be an issue, but right now the skin doesn't look like it would peel, and I'm not quite sure how to interpret this textural change. I'd like this orange-peel effect to go away quickly.

If anyone with experience on salicylic acid is reading this, could you please tell me if this has happened to you, too? Should I keep using SA as before and wait for the skin to peel off, or should I have a short break before continuing? Or have I made a mistake leaving the SA overnight, and I should wash it off after some time instead? Any advice would be appreciated, thank you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Which are you leaving on your face overnight, the 2% or the 5%? Did you wean your skin up to that high of a percentage? It sounds like you're burning your skin. I use 2% daily and it does not even make me dry. I would discontinue the 5%, take some time off SA, and try reintroducing it. You may want to start with 1% and then go up to 2% though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, thanks. I didn't wean my skin to 5% and that is what I'm using over night. Not on my whole face though, but just on my biggest closed comedones. I used the 2% BHA for a few weeks on and off, and since it didn't seem to have big effects, moved on to the 5% salicylic acid. It never stung my skin, so I figured my skin was handling it well. My skin does actually still look fairly normal, but up close and when I stretch it, I can see that it's wrinkly and the texture is strange.

I think I'm going to lay off the salicylic acid for a while, and switch back to 2% BHA after some time and see how it goes.

Edited by austra
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're not likely to see results from salcylic acid in two weeks (especially using it on and off), but it is effective in helping clogged pores. As with any medication, results take time. AHA is excellent for use at night. Most people will say sal acid is more effective, but I prefer AHA. I use Lumiplexion, which goes from 10 to 15%. She requires you ramp up by using 10% first, but her products are quality and effective.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, I realize that a couple of weeks isn't really enough for results. I had high expectations because I read someone here had got rid of their deep comedones in less than two weeks using Diana Yvonne's 5% salicylic acid, but it probably takes much longer than that in most cases. In any case, if the 5% salicylic acid always causes the kind of texture I have now, I think I will need to look for other treatments. Paula's Choice 2% BHA seemed much better in that sense and it didn't dry my skin much, but I've read comments that salicylic acid less than 5% wouldn't be very effective, unfortunately, so I may have to look for something else.

I don't actually know anything about AHA, and I'm quite new to BHA and salicylic acid as well, but I'll try to look into these more.

Edited by austra
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Greetings,

Thanks for posting this as I thought I was having a novel reaction to salicylic acid. I've been simultaneously using BP (2.5% Neutrogena) and SA (2% Neutrogena). To avoid confusion, I do not combine the medications. Because of BP sensitivity, I only use it on my nose and for occasional spot treatment. However, I've been using SA on most of my face,

The side effects I experience mirror the ones you've identified. Curiously enough, the side effects are most pronounced on my chin. If I puff my chin out I can see what looks like a mild rash. I have these annoying little bumps that almost look like razor burn. Some of the bumps are the color of my skin (white) and other bumps are red. I have a few scaly clusters and peeling skin as well. Interestingly, it does't look that bad unless I intentionally stretch my skin out or stand right in front of my mirror. It should be noted that I never had these symptoms before I regularly used SA.

Two months ago I made the foolish choice of trying Darque Tan, which is a sun-tanning establishment. Although I developed a moderate tan, I also developed dermatitis. I was using liberal amounts of SA in an attempt to mitigate acne, which I attributed to the sun lamp. Interestingly enough, I temporarily stopped my use of SA and my dermatitis and acne largely disappeared within two days!

Anyway, I feel like I'm damned if I use the SA and damned if I do nothing. My acne isn't currently bad enough for oral medication at this point and I can't use the Regimen without burning my face. Perhaps the most workable solution is to do the regimen without BP or SA, except for occassional spot treatment.

I've always left the SA on except for when I wash my face with Cetaphil or take a shower. I wish I could give you some advice on how to maximize the effectiveness of the product while minimizing the side effects. Unfortunately, the only advice I can give you is to make sure you're using moisturizer and only using a judicious amount of the product. I find that my skin develops bumps and becomes 'rough' if I'm not conservative in how I apply the SA.

Some other advice might be to try flax seed oil. I find that flax seed oil (i.e. Omega-3) gives my skin a healthy glow and reduces acne flare-ups. My skin is white, pale, and sensitive. This product really helps during the dry winter months. Also, I leave water in the bath tub at all times so I can increase the humidity in the air. Lastly, it sounds like the SA has become a real pain in the butt. It might be worthwhile to do what I did and simply terminate your use for a few days. This is how I noticed the SA was irritating my skin. Unfortunately, I still need to find an alternative treatment that isn't so abrasive.

Thank you,

Jeffrey

Hey there. I've been using Dianne Yvonne's 5% salicylic acid for about a week now to treat some closed comedones on my cheeks. I've been applying it every evening with a q-tip as a spot treatment, however on fairly wide areas. Before I've used Paula's Choice 2% BHA intermittently for a couple of weeks. My skin hasn't seemed too irritated by the acid, so I haven't washed it off, but let it stay on my skin over night.

The reason I started this topic is the effect the salicylic acid has had on my skin. It has become very dry, wrinkly, scaly and thick with a kind of orange-peel texture on those areas where I've applied SA. It looks quite horrendous, to be honest. sad.png If the skin would peel off soon, this wouldn't really be an issue, but right now the skin doesn't look like it would peel, and I'm not quite sure how to interpret this textural change. I'd like this orange-peel effect to go away quickly.

If anyone with experience on salicylic acid is reading this, could you please tell me if this has happened to you, too? Should I keep using SA as before and wait for the skin to peel off, or should I have a short break before continuing? Or have I made a mistake leaving the SA overnight, and I should wash it off after some time instead? Any advice would be appreciated, thank you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh my goodness! I think this may be happening to me to! I started using salicylic acid in August (2%) and it worked MIRACLES. I didn't have bad acne, just persistant breakouts and blackheads. I would put it on a couple of times a day and just leave it. I noticed that a pimple here and a pimple there would leave small scars behind, but they didn't bug me because they were small and on the side of my face. It was wierd though, since i've never had problems with scarring before. My skin texture was usually like porcelain. I went through an exfoliation craze in October and noticed all of a sudden i had a crazy orange peel texture all over my face and ice pick and a few rolling scars had appeared. I was using SA like a coat during this time. Since then, every pimple has left a scar behind. The only thing I can think of is SA, but the jury's still out on this one since i only just discontinued it's use. Hopefull my skin didn't just forget how to heal. I am only 21, so I hope it's not that!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmm, sorry to hear that. :( I've had scarring issues recently too, but they started a few months before I started using SA or any exfoliators, so in my case they're not related. My original dry orange peel skin actually peeled off and looked normal again after I took a break from SA. It came immediately back after just once using the 5% SA, so I stopped it. Now I use Paula's Choice 2% BHA once every few days. I still have some textural issues because of it but they're much milder. Once I get my pores cleaner, I'll try to stop SA completely, or at least use it very rarely.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That sounds like what happened to me when I used a 10% BP spot treatment. It looks bad, but once it dries enough and peels off, the skin is ok. (but i won;t be doing that again!)

What pH was the 5% from Diana Yvonne? There is a 3.2 and a 1.9 I think. I use the 2% at 3.2 and leave it on with no problems. I would neutralize a 1.9, though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That sounds like what happened to me when I used a 10% BP spot treatment. It looks bad, but once it dries enough and peels off, the skin is ok. (but i won;t be doing that again!)

What pH was the 5% from Diana Yvonne? There is a 3.2 and a 1.9 I think. I use the 2% at 3.2 and leave it on with no problems. I would neutralize a 1.9, though.

I didn't know there were different options and after I checked, mine seems to be the 1.9. Maybe I should get 3.2 instead and have another go.

How should I neutralize it? Rinse it off?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That sounds like what happened to me when I used a 10% BP spot treatment. It looks bad, but once it dries enough and peels off, the skin is ok. (but i won;t be doing that again!)

What pH was the 5% from Diana Yvonne? There is a 3.2 and a 1.9 I think. I use the 2% at 3.2 and leave it on with no problems. I would neutralize a 1.9, though.

I didn't know there were different options and after I checked, mine seems to be the 1.9. Maybe I should get 3.2 instead and have another go.

How should I neutralize it? Rinse it off?

That may have been the problem. a 1.9 is more like an acid peel from my understanding. Since what you described sounds like a chemical type burn, this may very well be the cause. I'm no expert, I can only speak from what I have learned and personally experienced. Your Paula's Choice might have been a higher pH and maybe why you didn't experience the reaction.

One poster on the forums uses the 5% at 1.9 and I believe she had said she leaves it on for 6 minutes then rinses her face with water. I do not know if this is enough to neutralize but she experiences no problems. When I use my acid peels, I neutralize with baking soda to completely stop the acid action. I think some say you can also just use a face wash. When using acids at that level I watch my skin in the mirror and when it starts turning a bit red I stop the action. Or if you have any intense pain or itching. Your skin may be a bit red afterwards, but should return to normal within 30mins or so. If I move up to the 1.9, I would start out leaving it on only maybe 2 mins and work my way up as my skin adjusted. I wouldn't go over 5-6 mins personally but I am more of a cautious type. lol If you continue to experience problems, it may be a reaction to one of the additives.

I think you can continue using what you have (the 1.9pH) just try not leaving it on so long and see how that works. You may have to do every other day, too. But You might be able to work with it so it won't cause your skin issues. :) Best wishes!

Here is what it says on the site (http://www.dianayvonne.com/product/CSE69_2/Salicylic-Acid-5-2-oz-19-pH.html):

Salicylic Acid 5% 2 oz. 1.9 pH

Directions Gently buff onto clean skin (the 2 x 2 gauze pads are best and won't waste product). You may neutralize with water after 2 to 3 minutes or sooner if the skin becomes red or irritated. Salicylic Acid is self neutralizing (takes about 10 minutes to neutralize) and can be left on the skin for a stronger action.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, thank you for that very informative post! I think you are right and my mistake was not rinsing the acid off after a couple of minutes. I'm grateful it's at least self-neutralizing after 10 minutes, so my chemical burn wasn't that bad. Will have to be more careful from now on.

And I'm looking forward to trying the 5% SA again! This time I'll leave it on 2-3 minutes and then wash my face.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, thank you for that very informative post! I think you are right and my mistake was not rinsing the acid off after a couple of minutes. I'm grateful it's at least self-neutralizing after 10 minutes, so my chemical burn wasn't that bad. Will have to be more careful from now on.

And I'm looking forward to trying the 5% SA again! This time I'll leave it on 2-3 minutes and then wash my face.

You're welcome! I hope it works out for you with the adjustment! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

**I'll preface this by saying I'm currently not using SA's everyday as I've been finding great results using a BP and AHA creams to spot treat and improve surface skin. But SA definitely has a place in my own regimen...

**I've been using SA on and off for years. (Mostly when the BP would start to give me trouble is when I would switch to SA lotions. )

I use a 2% SA lotion ( which stings like crazy when i apply it! ), and the usual 0.5% SA lotion from the drugstore.

This is what I have discovered::

**I find that with daily use of the 2% SA lotion my skin does indeed get a bit tender and dehydrated.

**I never really had any improvement with the common 0.5% SA lotions until I started to really SLATHER it on only overnight (about 4 to 6 pumps for the whole face). By morning my swelling and redness is significantly decreased, the excess moisture of the lotion also prevents me from getting dried out, and I can then exfoliate (gentle scrub cleanser) with good results and smoother looking skin. When I use the lotion in this way the SA tingles but in a very REFRESHING way =) Of course this method shouldn't be used everyday because all that product can sometimes cause me a few whitheads, which are easily manageable but still annoying. However, when my acne was cystic or rash-like, I would do this for several days in a row, take a day or two off, then start again.

**These days I use the higher 2% SA as normal but only about once per week, and only as a treatment, leaving it on the skin for a few hours.

I don't really use the lower SA% lotion anymore as my acne is starting to get under control. But if I were to break out severely again then my 0.5% lotion slathering would definitely be in my rotation probably more than the 2% one.

Edited by mama_bird
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've used the 5% SA now as a spot treatment for clogged pores, leaving it on only for 2 minutes. If I do this once every few days, my skin is fine. If I do it on a few days in a row, it dries up and scabs slightly and then peels off.

I just had one occasion when the SA probably contributed to scarring. I never intended to use it on active inflamed acne. Recently I had a pimple which wasn't going away, so I popped it gently and I could see the skin would need to heal for a few days. I wasn't dumb enough to put salicylic acid on the popped pimple, however I was dumb and put some 5% SA very close to it on some clogged pores, and I did that for a couple of days in a row. The skin dried up, also on top of the popped pimple, and just today the dried skin peeled off and I had a new scar where the pimple was. It's small and might heal well, but still I'm not too happy about it. I'm going to be very careful about not to use SA anywhere near healing or inflamed skin from now on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Personalized Advice Quiz - All of Acne.org in just a few minutes


×