The Benefits of Salicylic Acid for Body Blemishes

Body blemishes can be challenging: they’re often deep, stubborn — and they can be downright hard to reach. Ironically, the onset of summer weather often exacerbates body breakouts, right as we’re exposing more skin (not cool).

So what’s the best way to minimise body blemishes? We’ve got the lowdown from Dr. Sandra Lee (aka Dr. Pimple Popper) herself.

Body blemishes on shoulder that can be treated with Salicylic Acid Body Wash by SLMD Skincare

What causes body blemishes?

According to Dr. Lee, there are a host of factors that commonly contribute to body breakouts:

  • Genetics: you’re more likely to have body blemishes if your family members do, too.
  • Hormones: fluctuations in the balance of testosterone — true for women, too! — cause sebum levels to rise.
  • Lifestyle: not showering after a workout and wearing tight, non-breathable clothing both promote the growth of blemish-causing bacteria.
  • Weather: hot, humid conditions combined with sweat and occlusive sunscreen can cause clogged pores.

Where do body blemishes most often occur?

Because blemishes are so dependent on sebum production, it comes as no surprise that body spots are more common in areas with more sebaceous glands, including:

  • Chest
  • Shoulders
  • Back
  • Buttocks

These areas are prone to both comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) as well as inflammatory blemishes (papules, pustules, nodules and cysts).

What’s the best ingredient for body blemishes?

Dr. Lee’s favourite dermatological ingredient for blemish-prone body skin is salicylic acid. Often called the wonder acid, this beta hydroxy acid was originally derived from willow bark. Its benefits include:

  • Oil soluble: unlike water-soluble AHAs, salicylic acid can dissolve into the skin’s lipid layers to penetrate more deeply.
  • Keratolytic: it loosens the bonds between the outer, dead cells to exfoliate skin.
  • Anti-inflammatory: salicylic acid contains acetylsalicylic acid — the same anti-inflammatory ingredients that you find in aspirin.
  • Anti-bacterial: it kills blemish-causing bacteria found naturally on skin’s surface.
SLMD Skincare Salicylic Acid Body Wash

    What are the best products for body blemishes?

    Products containing salicylic acid are very effective in minimising the appearance of body blemishes. Look for formulas that contain maximum-strength concentrations, as body skin can handle the higher potency. Dr. Lee’s top pick for body blemishes is SLMD Skincare Salicylic Acid Body Wash. Here’s why:

    • Maximum-strength salicylic acid helps clear pores to minimise the appearance of breakouts.
    • Gel-to-foam texture transforms to a satisfying lather.
    • Formulated to be gentle enough for everyday use.
    • Suitable for all skin types, even sensitive skin.

    Dr. Lee’s last word

    Body blemishes are actually extremely common, but there are ways to manage them. The best solution is to use maximum strength salicylic acid, an incredibly effective exfoliant that helps clear out pores. I recommend SLMD Skincare Salicylic Acid Body Wash: just like facial blemish care, consistency is key here, so use daily — and shower more if you’re working out, sweating, slathering on sunscreen...anything that causes the buildup of oil and bacteria.

    —Dr. Sandra Lee


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