No, I’d not head of Azelaic Acid myself until a few months ago – but I’m happy to spread the word far and wide every chance get now! As regular readers know, I suddenly developed adult acne when I turned 40 – having completely ignored my skin my whole life, barely even breaking into a spot as a teenager, all of a sudden I couldn’t clear my skin. I tried everything. I used expensive cleansers and moisturisers to give it the best chance of being healthy on its own, I used spot treatments on breakouts, I exfoliated and scrubbed, I avoided make up, I came off the pill… and in the process I found lots of things that worked (and a lot that didn’t!).
reading an online forum lead me to look at Azelaic Acid – it’s not something you see commonly talked about (all the over the counter remedies seem to focus on salicylic acid acid, which is great for break outs but I find it is intensely drying and not great for long term use)
What is azelaic acid?
It isn’t the scary chemical acid that’s going to sizzle your skin, I promise! It’s actually naturally derived from grains like rye and barley, and actually Azelaic Acid is produced quite naturally by the yeast that live on normal skin.
What are the skincare benefits of azelaic acid?
It works by killing the bacteria that infect skin pores, causing the acne on the surface, and thanks to its brilliant anti-inflamatory properties it’s great for treating rosacea (my own personal acne type), clearing the bumps and swelling on the cheeks.
You can buy Azelaic Acid over the counter without a prescription, but do look for formulas with at least 15 percent.
Just a note for the summer though – it is a natural exfoliant, so it’s important that you use a suncream with it. And do book an appointment with your GP if you can’t get on top of your acne – I battled it for three years until giving in and seeing the doctor – who prescribed me antibiotics and cleared it up inside two weeks. I also got a prescription for the stronger-strength prescription version of Azelaic Acid; I like this Skinoren cream which is 20%, which you can purchase without s