Salicylic Acid to Betaine Salicylate: ALL the BHAs and why they are important skincare ingredients
In the list of acids for skin, beta-hydroxy acid ranks on top. Here's why you should include it in your skincare routine.
Just like AHAs or Alpha Hydroxy Acids, BHAs or Beta Hydroxy Acids also work well to exfoliate the skin. These acids though, go deeper into the pores and are hence more effective than their acid counterparts.
After entering your pores, BHAs enable the oil inside the skin to flow more freely by exfoliating the pore lining. This mechanism also helps in preventing the buildup of dead skin on the top layer, excess sebum and more, which often clogs up the pores and also stretches them, making them appear larger.
BHAs also have anti-inflammatory properties and help remove the dead skin cells that have built up on the top layer of the skin.
Continuous use of BHAs also reduces the amount of oil secreted by the skin over time, making, especially helpful to those with oily skin since it balances out the sebum secretion.
Types of BHAs
The most common of BHAs and also most widely used, this acid is also the strongest of the lot. It works best for those with acne-prone skin. It also helps work against the results of clogged pores like blackheads and whiteheads.
It is also used in higher concentrations as a peeling agent, to treat acne and acne scars.
This BHA comprises a mixture of both, Salicylic acid and Betaine, which is an amino acid that hydrates skin. It is gentler compared to salicylic acid and has been known to be equally effective as it, without causing the skin to irritate.
Willow Bark Extract
This is a natural BHA that is derived from willow barks which contain Salicin which then converts to Salicylic Adic. This is the weakest BHA of the three and while it is natural, it also delivers the least dramatic results.