Monday 18 July 2022

What The F**k Is Azelaic Acid?

Azelaic acid is a dicarboxylic acid that comes from grains such as barley, wheat, and rye.

It is an antibacterial and antioxidant-rich ingredient that benefits the skin in a number of ways. According to Dr Derrick Phillips, acclaimed dermatologist, azelaic acid is "a very versatile ingredient. It unblocks and sterilises pores, making it an ideal treatment for patients with acne." Dr Phillips uses the ingredient to treat both acne and rosacea, "I use 15% or 20% azelaic acid to treat patients with mild to moderate pimples, yellow heads, and whitehead and blackheads." he explains.

Azelaic acid has gentle exfoliating properties that remove dead skin cells, helping promote a smoother and brighter complexion. This makes azelaic acid a good option for daily exfoliation and a great alternative to glycolic acid and salicylic acid - acne-fighting ingredients that can be harsh on the skin and cause irritation.

As Dr Phillips explains, "azelaic acid fights free radicals, preventing skin damage and reducing inflammation. It also helps fade dark marks that develop after spots (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation), which is particularly helpful when treating acne in patients with darker skin tones".

In addition to treating acne, azelaic acid successfully calms inflammation, redness, and swelling, making it a good skincare ingredient for those with sensitive skin - rosacea included. On that note, azelaic acid can be used by all skin tones and skin types. It is also generally considered safe to use during pregnancy.

There are a number of great products on the market formulated with azelaic acid. Here are a few of my favourites...

Algenist Blue Algae Vitamin C Dark Spot Correcting Peel

Formulated with 100% pure, algae-derived vitamin C, Algenist's Blue Algae Vitamin C Dark Spot Correcting Peel (£80 treats dark spots and discolouration to deliver a smoother, brighter, and more even complexion.

This powerful peel is also formulated with the Algenist's patented alguronic acid, phycocyanin, and the brand's T.A.C.™ (Triple Acid Complex) - a powerful cocktail of AHAs, BHAs and PHAs (which include azelaic acid, tranexamic acid, malic acid, salicylic acid, and mandelic acid). These ingredients work together to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, protect skin from environmental damage, and prevent pimples.

Plenaire Violet Paste

Plenaire Violet Paste Overnight Blemish Solution (£36 SpaceNK) is a gentle but effective overnight skincare treatment that is designs to be applied - and left - on pimples. It helps reduce the look of blemishes by drawing out excess oil and also calms inflammation and redness.

The pimple paste is formulated with beta hydroxy acids, zinc oxide, and a special blend of azelaic acid, to clarify, calm, refine, and brighten the skin.

This Works Morning Expert Multi-Acid Pads

Designed with your morning skincare routine in mind, the This Works Morning Expert Multi-Acid Pads (£33 exfoliate the skin quickly and effortlessly for a smoother and brighter complexion.

The soft cotton pads are infused with alpha-hydroxy acids, to remove dead skin cells and unclog blocked pores. Niacin (vitamin B3) brightens skin, while a blend of azelaic acid and liquorish root calms irritation and reduces the appearance of blemishes.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

The Ordinary's Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% (£21.30 is one of the most popular azelaic acid skincare products on the beauty shelves.

The lightweight cream-gel is formulated to treat dullness, uneven skin tone, acne scars, and stubborn blemish marks (also known as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation). It gently exfoliates the skin to prevent clogged pores, blemishes, and dull skin.

© The Beauty Informer. All rights reserved.