Salicylic acid is a plant hormone which has tremendous uses in the medicinal and cosmetic industries. It’s known for its ability to ease aches, pains and reduce fevers. These medicinal properties, particularly fever relief have been known since ancient times. This acid is also very useful in cosmetics, especially that of the skin. It is very commonly used in acne creams and anti-dandruff shampoos.
The history of this substance dates back to 5th century when Greek physician Hippocrates wrote about a bitter powder extracted from willow bark that could cure aches and reduce fevers. In modern medicine, salicylic acid and its derivatives are used as constituents of products which are used to soothe join and muscle pain. Unripe fruits and vegetables are natural sources of salicylic acid particularly blackberries, dates, kiwi, apricots, tomatoes, mushrooms etc.,
Salicylic Acid in India is widely used in cosmetic products which include baby products, wipes, shampoos, creams, oral care lotions, lipsticks, body wash etc., and also in pharmaceutical, medicinal applications. Smaller quantities of this substance are also used in food preservatives and in antiseptics. It is also an important active metabolite of the widely used drug aspirin.
The salts and esters of salicylic acid are called as Salicylates, which form an important part of the above products. India is slowly emerging as a global player in chemical business and that’s due to low cost of raw materials. The input cost of salicylates is low due to total backward integration and hence it’s the popular choice with pharmaceutical and cosmetic product manufacturers.
Also, salicylates have the chemical properties which provide the ability to manufacture any type of preservative formulations. This unique property makes them even more popular. Use of salicylates even ensures consistency in the quality of various products.