Cosmetic Ingredients to Love: Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs)

Let's talk exfoliants!

Regular exfoliation will get rid of excess oil, dull skin, clogged pores to reveal a brighter, glowy complexion. I'm here for that.

So where do BHAs come into this? Well, BHAs are oil soluble chemical exfoliants. BHA stands for Beta Hydroxy Acids.

Don't let the word acids scare you, it really is a fantastic way to care for your skin.

If you have skin concerns like excess oil, enlarged pores, blackheads or acne then you need a BHA in your routine.

You need a BHA because it is oil soluble, so it can easily penetrate pores which are clogged with dead skin cells and excess oil. It removes the excess oil and the clogs. 

Yaaasss, to glowing, clear skin!

Common BHAs in skincare

There's only really one, salicylic acid and its derivative, betaine salicylate. In nature, salicylic acid is extracted from the bark of the willow tree.

Where can you find BHAs

In toners, moisturizers, serums etc. The sky is the limit really. There are a couple of recommendations you can search for on the blog.

I like my BHA as a toner. One of my favorites is the COSRX BHA Blackhead Power Liquid.

How to include BHAs in your skincare routine

  1. Patch test. Always, especially if you are introducing acids into your skin care routine. 
  2. After patch testing and all seems well, pace yourself. Exfoliate once or twice a week and build from there. Create an exfoliating schedule that suits your skin.
  3. BHAs must be at a pH between 3 and 4. If the pH is below 3, the product is too acidic, and you’ll run the risk of chemical burns, if the pH is higher than 4, it might not work.
  4. Salicylic acid is effective at concentrations of 2%. Betaine salicylate is effective at concentrations of 4%

In Conclusion

If you want to unclog pores, reduce excess oil, reduce blackheads, clear enlarged pores and get glowing, get a BHA stat!

Have you used a BHA toner before? Which one? If you don't use a BHA to exfoliate, what do you use? Let me know in the comments!

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