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The 10 Best Salicylic Acid Pads of 2020

You can choose to clear up your skin with a salicylic acid serum, a salicylic acid toner, or even a salicylic acid cleanser. But they barely give you the satisfaction of wiping salicylic acid pads all over your face. It almost feels like you’re sweeping off acne, sizzle-popping blackheads, and just pop-opening clogged pores. Salicylic acid peel pads are usually gentler than liquid peels. But they’re no less effective!

Salicylic acid and oily skin are a match made in heaven. And it’s all thanks to this beta-hydroxy acid’s fat-soluble nature. Salicylic acid can penetrate the skin and dissolve the dirt and oil inside the pores. That’s how it exfoliates and unclogs pores.

Not to mention, salicylic acid is anti-inflammatory. And that’s how it prevents acne and helps with inflammatory redness. Plus, it’s also anti-bacterial, which makes it equally effective in reducing and preventing acne.

Last but not least, salicylic acid is also a great ingredient to use on oily and aging skin. After all, hydroxy acids help speed up skin turnover.

Either way, below are the best salicylic acid pads to help you deal with acne, blackheads, congestion, and enlarged pores.

First Aid Beauty FAB Pharma White Clay Acne Treatment Pads 2% Salicylic Acid - Best Salicylic Acid Pads

These pads are anti-acne combined with anti-oil. The unique formulation contains clay, which we know from our face masks whenever we like to get rid of excess oil and to get a matte complexion. 2% salicylic acid and a blend of natural anti-inflammatories help clear out the skin from blemishes and blackheads while preventing future breakouts.

Sephora Clarifying Peel Pads

If budget is a concern, these are the most affordable salicylic acid pads that deliver! They have naturally-derived salicylic and glycolic acids to detoxify the skin, eliminate congestion, and reduce inflammation. The concentration of the acid is not clear. But the pads are gentle enough to use twice daily on oily skin.

Philosophy Clear Days Ahead Overnight Repair Salicylic Acid Treatment Pads

These pads are super gentle and beginner-friendly. They contain 0.5% salicylic acid, which is ideal if you’re just starting to incorporate acids into your routine. Besides salicylic acid, the pads are also soaked in AHAs like glycolic and mandelic for a thorough exfoliation to improve the skin tone and texture.

Strivectin Advanced Resurfacing Daily Reveal Exfoliating Pads

This one takes multi-acid exfoliation to a whole new level! It’s brimming with all the acids on god’s green earth. It has salicylic acid from the BHA family, glycolic acid from the AHA family, and gluconolactone from the PHA family. Moreover, it has azelaic acid and tranexamic acid to tackle post-acne discolorations and hyperpigmentation. The pads are incredibly helpful in cleaning out pores and getting rid of acne. But they’re also great for brightening up your complexion and evening out your skin tone. They’re the perfect glow-boosting exfoliation pads.

Jack Black Power Peel Multi-Acid Resurfacing Pads

And speaking of multi-acids, this is another one. The more the merrier! Salicylic acid infiltrates the pores and dissolves trapped gunk. Glycolic acid exfoliates the top layer of your skin to get rid of flakiness and dullness. And gluconolactone, a polyhydroxy acid, gently resurfaces the skin while plumping it up to give you a smoother and softer texture. The pads also contain niacinamide to maximize results and minimize irritation.

Cane + Austin Acne Retexture Pad 5% Glycolic Acid and 2% Salicylic Acid

When you’re wiping your way into clear skin, you might as well scrape off the dullness. These pads are great for improving the look of enlarged pores and reviving dull and tired-looking skin. They help clear up stubborn blackheads that give you a dirty complexion. Even if you can’t completely get rid of pores, you certainly can improve their appearance. Whenever you need a quick pick me up, swipe one to get a fresh-looking skin. Plus, the pads contain witch hazel, which is anti-inflammatory and super energizing for the skin.

M-61 PowerSpot Pad - Best Salicylic Acid Pads

These also contain witch hazel in addition to anti-inflammatory tea tree oil and skin-soothing aloe and cucumber. The combination of AHAs and BHAs keeps the skin free from acne, congestion, and makes it look radiant at all times.

COSRX One Step Original Clear Pad

These pads are perfect for those of you who don’t enjoy the tingling sensation. They’re gentle on the skin. Because instead of salicylic acid, they contain betaine salicylate, a gentler alternative, as well as willow bark water. You get the exfoliation minus the potential irritation. This makes these pads suitable for all skin types that are dealing with occasional breakouts.

Skyn Iceland Nordic Skin Peel - Best Salicylic Acid Pads

Instead of the mainstream alpha hydroxy acid, these pads are made with lactic and naturally-derived salicylic acid. This way, you get lactic acid‘s additional benefits like increasing hydration and plumping up the skin. Additional benefits include witch hazel and papaya extract, which is a natural exfoliant. These pads are great for gently resurfacing the skin, reducing breakouts, and smoothing out textured skin.

Dr. Dennis Gross DRx Acne Eliminating Pads - Best Salicylic Acid Pads

These pads are soaked in acid soup! Salicylic, glycolic, lactic; a great blend to simply remove dead skin, clear up the complexion from pimples and blackheads, and fade scarring and hyperpigmentation. The pads contain L-carnitine, which reduces oil production and as a result, prevents congestion. Plus, azelaic acid helps with acne marks as well as sunspots.

How to Use Salicylic Acid Pads

There are things to keep in mind before you start wiping your face with these acid-soaked pads.

  • First of all, don’t use an exfoliating toner if you’re using exfoliating pads. A salicylic acid pad is a replacement for a salicylic acid toner or a serum.
  • Combining different hydroxy products in the same routine doesn’t double the effects, it just doubles irritation.
  • If you’re just starting out, try using your salicylic acid pad 3 times a week until your skin gets used to it. After a while, you can take it up to 2 times a day once your skin can tolerate it.
  • A little burning and tingling are perfectly normal after each application. But if your skin gets too irritated and red, reduce the frequency.
  • You should use your pads after your clean your face when it’s dry. Give it a couple of minutes and then apply your serums and creams. Don’t rinse off your face after you use the pads unless the instructions say so!
  • If you don’t want to regularly use these pads, you can always use them as spot treatments on pimples whenever you’re breaking out.
  • Alpha and beta hydroxy acids make the skin prone to sunburn. Always wear sunscreen to protect your new and healthy skin cells.
  • You can’t use salicylic acid if you’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant. I’m sorry but you’re just going to have to choose between good skin and procreation.
  • Also, you can’t use salicylic acid if you have an aspirin allergy.
  • And finally, a jar of salicylic acid pads is a great investment. It can be pricey. So whatever you do, do not forget to put the lid back on! The pads will dry out and you might even cry a bit.

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