Salicylic acid in the treatment of acne and psoriasis

We regularly receive enquiries from people who’ve heard about salicylic acid and how it can be used to treat acne and psoriasis. Anyone who’s had to deal with either of these skin conditions, particularly when they occur in an area that’s highly visible, knows how tricky they can be to get rid of. Off the shelf treatments from a chemist can prove effective however, as any teenager will tell you, acne in particular can be stubborn and in need of treatment that packs a little more punch.

This is where salicylic acid prepared by a compounding pharmacist can help.

What is salicylic acid?

As the name implies, salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid and when applied topically it thins the skin and causes it to flake and peel away, taking the acne or psoriasis affected area with it. For this reason, salicylic acid is the active ingredient in many acne and psoriasis treatments you’ll commonly find at the supermarket or chemist.

In wart treatments it can be used in concentrations of up to 27% however concentrations of this strength would have a devastating effect on facial or other sensitive skin. In products intended for the face it’s generally included in low concentrations of no more than 3% – after all it is an acid, and acids have the potential the cause serious skin burns if not managed properly.

However sometimes a stubborn skin condition requires acid of a slightly higher strength than 3% to really be effective, which is why National Custom Compounding produces a salicylic acid cream at a concentration of 5%. At this level it has enough power to destroy the inflammation without causing too much unnecessary damage to the skin.

Is it just for acne and psoriasis?

Salicylic acid will cause skin to shed no matter what condition it’s in or how it may be affected. For this reason it is often used to effectively treat:

Do I need a prescription to buy 5% salicylic acid?

Australia’s drug administrator, the Therapeutic Good Administration (TGA) classifies salicylic acid as ‘Not Scheduled’ meaning you do not need a prescription from a doctor to purchase it.

National Custom Compounding regularly makes up supplies of 5% salicylic acid cream for customers with a range of skin complaints outlined above. For more information on the product contact our friendly team on [email protected] or call us on (07) 5530 6677. If you’re not on the Gold Coast – no problem, we deliver Australia wide.