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Face Application

From skin type to complexion concerns and the ingredients that can best help you achieve your goals – there’s a lot to consider when it comes to skincare. With so much to keep in mind, knowing which ingredients work well together and which don’t is easily missed. Not only is it important to consider the compatibility of each ingredient in your skincare regimen to ensure you’re using products effectively, but it can also lead to better results. 

Certain ingredient parings can enhance the effectiveness of one another, and one such duo is hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid. So, if you’ve ever found yourself staring at product labels wondering ‘can I use hyaluronic acid with salicylic acid?’ The answer is a resounding yes. Read on to find out why.

Salicylic acid vs hyaluronic acid

Are hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid the same? It’s a common question, but though they’re both “acid” ingredients, hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid serve distinct purposes when it comes to skincare. So, what’s the difference?

  • Hyaluronic acid for skin: with the ability to hold up to a thousand times its weight in water, hyaluronic acid is a hero hydrator that supports plumper-looking skin with a soft feel. 

  • Salicylic acid for skin: as an oil soluble chemical exfoliant, salicylic acid can help regulate oil production by reaching deep into the pores to unclog and purify.

In terms of using these ingredients, the question isn’t whether salicylic acid or hyaluronic acid is better, but how can you use them together for better results.

Using hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid

Hyaluronic acid can help rehydrate complexions after a chemical exfoliant like salicylic acid has been applied. This means you can support skin texture and clarity with salicylic acid, followed by hyaluronic acid to nourish and soften the skin. To get the most out of hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid, it’s important to understand how to pair them properly, including:


  • What order to apply hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid on your skin.

  • How often to apply hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid for your skin type.

  • Is hyaluronic acid or salicylic acid better for mild acne-prone skin?

  • Which skincare ingredients to avoid when using hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid.


Ahead, explore all you need to know about using hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid in your skincare regime.


What comes first: salicylic acid or hyaluronic acid?

When it comes to salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid, order of application is generally dictated by formula rather than ingredient. The general rule of thumb is to apply the thinnest consistency products first and work up to thicker textures.

If you prefer to cleanse with a hyaluronic acid enriched face wash like Ceramides Hydrating Cleanser for Dry Skin, apply salicylic acid in later steps, within serum or face cream.


How often can you use hyaluronic acid with salicylic acid?

Hydration is a key skincare element no matter your skin type, so hyaluronic acid can be applied daily as part of both an AM and PM skincare regime. When it comes to salicylic acid, most complexions can benefit from its gentle exfoliating properties – but how often to use it differs depending on your skin type. 


  • Dehydrated skin can find support in dry skin products formulated with salicylic acid once or twice a week. 

  • Sensitive skin can see improvements when salicylic acid is used once a week.



Is hyaluronic acid or salicylic acid better for mild acne-prone skin?


Exfoliation and hydration each provide important balancing benefits for those with mild acne-prone skin, so developing a skincare regime using both hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid can help support this concern. For those prone to breakouts, the following skincare regime can help promote a clearer, smoother complexion:

  1. Cleanse with a salicylic acid face wash like Blemish Control Cleanser for mild acne-prone skin which features purifying clay to absorb oil and leave a matte finish. 

  2. Target blackheads and support clear skin by applying a thin layer of Blemish Control Gel to the entire face. This formula can increase photosensitivity, so follow with SPF in the AM. 

  3. Increase hydration with hyaluronic acid face cream – protect against UV rays in the daytime with Ceramides AM Facial Moisturising Lotion with SPF 15, and at night use Ceramides PM Facial Moisturising Lotion.

Which ingredients to avoid when using hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid?

While hyaluronic acid is compatible with most other skincare ingredients, salicylic acid requires some extra care when pairing with other products in your regime. 

  • Vitamin C and glycolic acid: salicylic acid is often used in the same formula alongside other acids like vitamin C or glycolic acid, but it’s best not to combine or layer these ingredients yourself. Formulated products are expertly designed and carefully balanced to deliver best results. If using separate products, apply these ingredients in separate regimes.

Retinol: retinol and salicylic acid can both support healthy skin cell turnover, so you may want to harness the benefits of both if you have mature skin, or oily skin prone to breakouts. But these ingredients are best used at different times of day, so apply salicylic acid in the AM and Skin Renewing Retinol Anti-wrinkle Serum in the PM.


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