The main difference between azelaic acid and niacinamide is that azelaic acid is a dicarboxylic acid, whereas niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3.
Azelaic acid and niacinamide are two skincare ingredients that have various skin benefits.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Azelaic Acid
– Definition, Functions
2. What is Niacinamide
– Definition, Functions
3. Similarities – Azelaic Acid and Niacinamide
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Azelaic Acid and Niacinamide
– Comparison of Key Differences
Azelaic Acid, Niacinamide
What is Azelaic Acid
Azelaic acid is a naturally occurring organic compound. It is a dicarboxylic acid produced by yeast and bacteria on the skin as well as by some grains such as wheat, barley, and rye. Azelaic acid works by clearing the pores of bacteria that may be causing irritation or breakouts, reducing inflammation so that acne becomes less visible, less red, and less irritated, and gently encouraging cell turnover so the skin heals more quickly and the scarring is reduced.
Azelaic acid is available in gel, foam, or cream form. It has many uses. One such use is treating acne scars. It also prevents melanin synthesis; hence, it is an effective treatment for hyperpigmentation. Azelaic acid has antibacterial properties that help to kill the bacteria that cause acne.
This chemical is also effective in treating skin conditions like melasma (which causes dark patches on the skin) and rosacea (which causes redness, inflammation, and small bumps on the face). Though it has many benefits, it may cause some side effects in some people. This can include itching, dryness, and stinging of the skin. Sometimes, it may cause allergic reactions too.
What is Niacinamide
Niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3. It is a water-soluble vitamin that is essential for the proper functioning of the body. There are many benefits of niacinamide. It is a powerful antioxidant that can help to protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals, UV radiation, and environmental stressors.
Niacinamide works by stimulating the production of ceramides, which are a type of lipids essential for a healthy skin barrier. The functions of ceramides include helping to lock in moisture, prevent water loss, and protect the skin from environmental stressors. Niacinamide can help to keep the skin hydrated, soft, and supple.
Another benefit of niacinamide is the ability to reduce inflammation. Here, niacinamide works by inhibiting the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which are molecules that can contribute to inflammation in the skin. By reducing inflammation, niacinamide can help to soothe redness, calm irritated skin, and prevent the development of acne and other inflammatory skin conditions. It is also helpful in the treatment of hyperpigmentation. Niacinamide works by inhibiting the transfer of melanin to skin cells, which in turn reduces the appearance of dark spots.
Though niacinamide has many uses, it also has side effects like stomach upset, gas, dizziness, headache, and rash when taken by mouth. When applied to the skin, Niacinamide may cause mild burning, itching, and redness.
Similarities Between Azelaic Acid and Niacinamide
- Azelaic acid and niacinamide are two skincare ingredients.
- Both may have side effects despite their many benefits.
Difference Between Azelaic Acid and Niacinamide
Azelaic acid is a dicarboxylic acid, whereas niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3.
Mechanism of Action
Azelaic acid works by inhibiting the growth of acne-causing bacteria and reducing oil production, whereas niacinamide works by improving the skin barrier function and reducing inflammation.
Moreover, azelaic acid is more effective in treating acne and rosacea, while niacinamide is effective in treating hyperpigmentation.
Side effects of the use of azelaic acid include itching, dryness, stinging, and allergic reactions, whereas side effects of the use of niacinamide include stomach upset, gas, dizziness, headache and rash when taken by mouth, and mild burning, itching, and redness when applied to the skin.
Azelaic acid and niacinamide are two skincare ingredients that have various skin benefits. The main difference between azelaic acid and niacinamide is that azelaic acid is a dicarboxylic acid, whereas niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3.
1. “Azelaic acid 3D ball” By Jynto (talk) – This image was created with Discovery Studio Visualizer. (CC0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Nicotinamide” By NEUROtiker – Own work (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia