The term salicylic acid gets thrown around here a lot on BellaSugar, because it's a common ingredient used in acne-fighting products such as cleansers, toners and especially spot treatments.

It is a topical anti-inflammatory and a beta hydroxy acid. It slows down the shedding of skin cells inside your hair follicles, which clog your pores and often lead to acne.

It is used to treat blemishes, blackheads, whiteheads and even dandruff, psoriasis, calluses, corns and warts in some cases. The drawback of using salicylic acid is that it can be very drying and irritating on sensitive skin. Overall it is highly effective and safe—which is why it's so popular in over-the-counter products targeted at clearing up blemished complexions.