Until about a year ago, Cosmedicine had a Speedy Recovery product line for acne. Now Cosmedicine has a single Speedy Recovery product for acne. This one of a kind acne care product, however, is well worth considering, especially if you have fair but oily skin.
The sole survivor of the Cosmedicine Speedy Recovery product line of acne care products is Speedy Recovery Acne Treatment Daytime Blemish Lotion SPF 15. What’s unique about this product is that it combines both a beta-hydroxy acid in a form that works for renewing the skin and a sunscreen for protecting the skin from discoloration after blemishes are gone. It’s difficult to find products that get either ingredient right and it’s unique to provide them both in a form that really works.
What Beta-Hydroxy Acids Do for Your Skin
You’ve probably heard about alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids. They both can be used as skin peels (to remove the entire upper layer of the skin to regenerate skin under blemishes and scars) or skin exfoliants (to remove just dead skin form the very top layer of the skin to expose younger and more deeply colored skin beneath while opening clogged pores).
The alpha-hydroxy acid group includes products such as glycolic acid and lactic acid. The beta-hydroxy acid group consists of salicylic acid. Alpha-hydroxy acids are usually applied to dry skin. Beta-hydroxy acids are usually applied to oily skin. Both kinds of products have to be applied at a low enough pH actually to dissolve dead skin but a high enough pH to avoid damaging live skin. And acne skin care products almost never get the pH right.
Cosmedicine Speedy Recovery Acne Treatment Daytime Blemish Lotion SPF 15 contains 2% salicylic acid at a pH just below 4. That’s low enough to break up dead skin but it’s high enough not to damage healthy skin. It can sting and tingle just a little, but in this case that’s not a bad sign. The product also contains a variety of anti-inflammatory botanicals such as chamomile, carrot, and sesame seed extract, and omega-3 essential fatty acids from flaxseed.
The anti-inflammatory ingredients are very important for the long-term success of the product. Generally speaking, although there are exceptions to the rule, the oilier your skin, the darker your skin. The darker your skin, the more pigment-making melanocytes there are in your skin. Melanocytes don’t just make skin pigment to give your skin its natural tone. They also make skin pigment as an antioxidant that fights inflammation.
Sometimes the excessive pigmentation left after inflammation is worse than acne itself, particularly on the darkest skin tones. It’s important to reduce inflammation to reduce pigmentation, and part of reducing inflammation is limiting exposure to the sun. That’s why Cosmedicine Speedy Recovery Acne Treatment Daytime Blemish Lotion SPF 15 contains avobenzone.
Avobenzone for Healthy Skin
Avobenzone is a sun protection chemical that you may see listed as Parsol 1789 or butyldimethoxylbenzoyl-methane. The advantage of this chemical in sunscreen is that it absorbs all the wavelengths of ultraviolet light. Most sunscreens only protect against UV-B rays. They don’t protect against the even more damaging UV-A rays, except the mineral sunscreens that contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, and these two mineral sun blocks can leave a white or purple cast on dark skin. Avobenzone blocks both UV-A and UV-B radiation without changing the color of the skin.
Avobenzone by itself at least protects your skin from darkening as acne heals. But avobenzone with beta-hydroxy acids heals your skin as it protects it. This is a unique combination of effects that just is not found in competing products.
Should You Try Cosmedicine Speedy Recovery for Acne?
Some consumers find Cosmedicine a little pricey. The company discontinued its $18 product and its $78 product and now recommends that retailers charge $40 for Speedy Recovery. That is out of some budgets, but it’s not as expensive as it sounds when you consider that you are getting a $20 beta-hydroxy lotion along with a $20 avobenzone sunblock and a lot of other skin protective ingredients.
Still, this product is not for absolutely everyone.
- If you have extremely fair skin, you may do better with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide sun blocks. You don’t really need avobenzone, and the avobenzone in products that contain both avobenzone and either the zinc compound or the titanium compound tends to break down in 3 or 4 hours. If you don’t have to worry about a metal-based sun block whitening your skin, it’s probably more effective. It’s also less expensive.
- If you have dry skin, you will probably get better results from products that contain alpha-hydroxy acids such as glucouronic acid or lactic acid or glycolic acid. Salicylic acid won’t hurt your skin, but the other acids will do more to bring out your natural skin tones.
- If you have rosacea, this product isn’t for you. But most products aren’t.
- And if you have sensitive skin, use Cosmedicine Speedy Recovery with caution. You might even want to try a test patch of the product first before you put it all over your skin.
How can you tell if you have sensitive skin? If your skin tends to turn red without forming pimples, you have sensitive skin. If your skin breaks out when you come in from the cold or when you drink hot beverages, and especially if your skin breaks out when you come in from the cold and you drink hot beverages, you have sensitive skin. If you get contact dermatitis from nickel jewelry or dish washing detergent, or if you blush when you are embarrassed or flush when you get hot, you have sensitive skin. If you have sensitive skin, don’t use Speedy Recovery.
But if you have dark and oily skin that tends to form more blackheads than pimples but forms tiny spots of pigmentation when pimples heal, this is probably the product for you. It’s a little more expensive than some of its competitors but it does a great job on oily, darker, blackhead prone skin.