Shedding dead skin cells helps to keep your skin fresh, healthy, and beautiful. It also helps to make you appear younger than you are as the dullness of spent cells is lifted to reveal softer, newer skin cells. Salicylic acid has often been used in skin care formulations intended for the purpose of exfoliating dead cells from the skin. Since it is such an effective peeling agent, it has also been blended into formulations created for the treatment of skin conditions that lead to scaly skin or encrusted, flaky scalp conditions. In a similar manner, this active ingredient is typically found in a number of acne treatments. Dead skin cells often lead to clogged pores that are filled not only with spent cells but also with sebum and other debris. Helping to shed the skin of dead cells can reduce pore blockage that can lead to blemishes.