Salicylic acid, one of the various acids that most likely intertwines with our lives in everyday life but whose properties and uses are not so easy to explain. Let's try, without pretending to be little chemists or medical experts, but telling why it is important and should be mentioned. Even just consciously read the labels of the products we buy. For example, we find salicylic acid in various body creams, because of its keratolytic / exfoliating properties, but it is also appreciated for its bacteriostatic, anti-mold and drying virtues.
Salicylic acid: what it is
It is one of the best known Beta-hydroxy acids, it's a exfoliating agent widely used in the cosmetics industry, especially as an ingredient for chemical scrubs or peels. The chemical formula with which it is identified is C7H6O3, that of 2-hydroxybenzoic acid.
In nature we find this acid in the form of an ester in many plants, among all, the one that contains the most is perhaps the Gaultheria procumbens. To imagine a form to be attributed to salicylic acid, let's attribute it to that of one white crystalline powder, or that of a pile of thin and colorless needles, with a first sweetish, then acrid taste.
When he gets hit by a solar radiation, salicylic acid changes color while it is not very soluble in water, on the contrary it is both in alcohol and in ether, acetone and chloroform.
Salicylic acid: properties
Today it is found only used in cosmetic and dermatological field, to combat papulo-pustular acne of mild and moderate entity, since it has keratolytic and smoothing properties, but that wasn't always the case. Some time ago, salicylic acid was also used in the medical field, since it had an antipyretic and partly anti-inflammatory effect. When it transpired he might have had gods harmful effects, because excessively irritating to gastric and esophageal mucous membranes, it was no longer used for this purpose and remained only in cosmetic products.
Salicylic acid: cream
Here is an example of where salicylic acid was and still is used: in the cream. Usually applied a couple of times a day a cream based on this acid is needed to combat papular-pustular acne. Also on Amazon there are various options to test its effectiveness personally if you need it. A 120ml bottle costs 26 euros, contains 1% Salicylic Acid.
Salicylic acid in food
There are also some foods which can be considered natural sources of salicylic acid, especially we must look at fruits and vegetables, spices and some herbs. For the rest, we do not count on meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dairy products that contain very poor quantities of salicylates, the same goes for the various legumes, seeds, nuts and cereals, among which they only save almonds, chestnut water and peanuts.
Salicylic acid: skin
Let's go back to the application of this acid in cosmetics and dermatology where we can benefit from its keratolytic and smoothing properties. On the skin, once applied, it is able to selectively break the keratin protein chain, thus decreasing the cohesive forces that unite these cells to each other. This is a contribution to the cell renewal. While it does this, it has no effect on other proteins, so it only destroys the cells of the stratum corneum without causing damage and unwelcome side effects.
Salicylic acid for warts
If we apply creams or lotions with salicylic acid to warts, we take advantage of its bacteriostatic and soothing properties which are also useful for treating local inflammations. His is also very popular action with corns, calluses and hyperkeratosis, with dark spots on the skin related, with melasma and various scalp disorders, first of all the dandruff.
Salicylic acid: price
The indicative price of a cream, may vary depending on the brand we rely on and the size of the package. On Amazon we can also find them at affordable prices such as this specific cream for the treatment of boils and black spots which costs less than 15 euros..
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