How to Use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

Some links on this page are affiliate links which means that, if you choose to make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

The Ordinary is one of the most popular skincare brands on the market for its affordability and effectiveness. The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% is one of their best sellers, yet most people do not know what Azelaic Acid is or what it does. Read on for more information on how to use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid!

  • Product Type: Cream
  • Key ingredients: Azelaic Acid
  • Skin types: Normal, acne-prone, oily, combination, dry
  • Key benefits: Brightening, clarifying
  • Safety: Safe for most skin types, but perform a patch test before use
The ordinary azelaic acid

What Does The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Do?

The word acid has negative connotations, but they are excellent for the skin. The Azelaic Acid Suspension from The Ordinary eliminates dark spots, hyperpigmentation, texture, and blemishes.

Brightening is the primary use of Azelaic Acid, but it also helps with other skin issues, such as:

  • Mild pigmentation
  • Acne inflammation (has anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial benefits)
  • Redness and rosacea
  • Sun damage
  • Dead skin buildup
  • Acne scars

The high concentration of Azelaic Acid in the formula is a fantastic source of antioxidants, which help prevent future skin problems and diminish scarring from past blemishes.

How to Use It?

Before using your shiny new bottle of Azelaic Acid, make sure to perform a patch test. Patch testing is crucial for maintaining skin health and ensuring you will not have an allergic reaction to the product.

Follow these steps for a successful patch test:

  1. Apply a small dab of Azelaic Acid product onto your clean upper forearm.
  2. Keep the area dry – do not bathe right after you apply it!
  3. After 24 hours, rinse the area.
  4. Note any irritation, redness, blistering, or discomfort at any point during the test.
  5. If you experience any of these symptoms, do not use the product.

After your patch test, you can finally apply the product! The Ordinary recommends using the Azelaic Acid Suspension at night after cleansing.

Azelaic Acid should be used after toner and water-based products but before moisturizer. For an extra touch, feel free to apply the product with a Gua Sha crystal or roller – or pat it in with your hands for absorption.

If you use it during the day, always apply SPF, and never use this product on broken skin.

Who Should Use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid?

What makes this product so beloved is that almost anyone can use it! Below is a table guide for quick deets on who should try this product.

Skin TypeIssueShould You Use It?
OilyHyperpigmentation, dull skinYes!
DryDull skin, textureYes - but with a moisturizer
CombinationSevere dryness, eczemaAsk your physician before use
SensitiveRedness, sensitivity, irritationOnly after a patch test

Most people have zero side effects, but it is always best to err on the side of caution. Azelaic acid is also great for people with acne-prone, and rosacea-prone skin.

When to Use It?

The Ordinary suggests applying this in the morning or night, but ideally at night. Using it at night may help the formula soak in more efficiently and prevent sun damage.

You should apply the Azelaic Acid after cleansing, so it absorbs easily into your skin.

How Often Should I Use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid?

You should not use this product more than twice a day. Doing so can:

  • Dry out your skin
  • Over-exfoliate
  • Cause redness

Over-use of most products can lead to these issues, so it is best to use them as directed.

What Ingredients Can I Use With The Ordinary Azelaic Acid?

Azelaic Acid is not known to have any problematic interactions with most ingredients. Safe ingredients to use with The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension are:

  • Retinoids
  • Niacinamide
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Antioxidants
  • Salicylic acid
  • Other lightening agents, such as kojic acid
Hyaluronic Acid is especially effective for boosting hydration.
Self Care Checklist

Are There Any Ingredients That Conflict With It?

While Azelaic Acid is safe to use with most products, there are a few ingredients to avoid while using Azelaic Acid by The Ordinary.

You should not use it with direct acids, Copper Peptides, EUK134 0.1%, Peptides, and 100% Niacinamide Powder. Niacinamide serums are okay to use, however.

Side Effects

Since this product is not prescription strength, adverse side effects are not very common. Hyper-sensitive skin may have more of a reaction to Azelaic Acid.

Side effects range from mild to severe:
MildModerateSevere
Stinging, burning, tinglingBlistering, swelling, sorenessHives, eye pain, skin color changes

If you experience any moderate or severe effects, stop using the product and see a physician as soon as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you still curious if The Ordinary Azelaic Acid is for you? Read on for some common questions about the formula!

What is Azelaic Acid?

Azelaic Acid is a naturally occurring acid that can be found in some forms of grain. Increasing the natural amount in your skin leads to a brightened, glowing complexion.

Does the Ordinary Azelaic Acid Work?

Everyone has different skin concerns and types, so every product will not work for everyone. That said, this product has overwhelmingly positive reviews:

  • Ulta – average rating of 4.3
  • Sephora – 4.2 rating
  • The Ordinary – 4.4 average

Most reviewers seem to have decent results!

Can I Use the Ordinary Azelaic Acid Every Day?

Yes, you can use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid daily! Daily use is safe and recommended by The Ordinary, as long as you only use it up to twice a day.

How Long Does It Take for the Ordinary Azelaic Acid to Work?

If you do not see any changes immediately, do not panic – it can take several weeks, sometimes up to eight, to see a difference while using Azelaic Acid.

Do You Use Azelaic Acid Before or After Moisturizer?

You can apply Azelaic Acid before your moisturizer. You are also free to use it after your moisturizer if that method works for you, though, especially if you experience sensitivity. Moisturizer may help form a barrier between your skin and the Azelaic Acid.

Can You Use Azelaic Acid With Niacinamide?

Absolutely, yes, you can use niacinamide and Azelaic Acid together. Just ensure that you are not using the powder Niacinamide.

Can You Use Azelaic Acid With Retinol?

You can, but you should alternate the days you use it. Using Retinol and Azelaic Acid in the same routine may irritate your skin.

Is the Ordinary Azelaic Acid Good for Acne?

Most users that use the product for acne find that it works well for reducing future breakouts and scarring, but remember:

  • This product is not a prescription
  • Severe acne should receive treatment from a dermatologist
  • Do not use on broken skin

Mild acne should see some improvement after continued use.

Is the Ordinary Azelaic Acid Safe for Sensitive Skin?

Generally, yes, but pay close attention to your patch test before using it if you have sensitive skin. You may have mild tingling upon first use.

Does Azelaic Acid Make Your Skin Sun Sensitive?

You should apply an SPF every day regardless, but yes, Azelaic Acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun – which is why most professionals recommend using it at night.

Final Thoughts

If you struggle with acne or hyperpigmentation, Azelaic Acid may be your new holy grail product.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid is easy to use, affordable, and most importantly – effective! Check it out for a bright, smooth complexion.

Judy Rose

Hi, it’s Judy!

I’m a passionate skincare specialist and writer. I have more than 7 years of experience as a beauty, fashion, and lifestyle writer and editor, and I’m extremely passionate about what I do.