Benzoyl Peroxide vs. Salicylic Acid: Which One Is Better For Treating Acne?

When hunting for acne-fighting skin-care products, you’ve probably stumbled upon the ingredients salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide a handful of times. They’re two of the better known skin-care ingredients on the market, and it’s a guarantee you’ll find one listed on the label of any face wash, cream, moisturizer, or treatment that promises to address breakouts.

While salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide both treat acne, they’re very different. In an attempt to banish stubborn acne, some people resort to using a combination of the two ingredients, which can lead to more harm than good. Overdrying out the skin can lead to an increase in oil productions and irritation, which can trigger more breakouts. Especially when it comes to skin care, more isn’t always better.

If you’re curious which is better for you, benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, we tapped two dermatologists to break down the benefits and drawbacks of each.

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