Side effects of sulfur


Can You Use Sulfur for Acne Spots and Scars?

Sulfur works best for breakouts that are formed with a combination of dead skin cells and excess sebum. These include milder forms of acne, such as whiteheads and blackheads.

Still, it’s important to bear in mind that results can vary between users. It also might work on some breakouts, but not on others. The first step is to determine what type of acne you have. Then you can talk to your dermatologist about whether sulfur is right for you.

Mild: Whiteheads and blackheads

Classified as noninflammatory, whiteheads and blackheads are the mildest forms of acne. They happen when oil and dead skin cells combine and get stuck in your hair follicles.

If the clogged pore is open at the top, it’s a blackhead. If the clogged pore has a closed top, it’s a whitehead.

Sulfur is one OTC acne treatment that can help with whiteheads and blackheads because it targets the two main elements: dead skin cells and sebum. Salicylic acid can also help this form of acne, but if you have sensitive skin you might try sulfur instead.

Moderate: Papules and pustules

Papules and pustules are a form of moderate inflammatory acne. Both are formed from a breakdown in pore walls, which makes them susceptible to getting clogged. The pores then harden and can become painful.

The main difference between the two is that pustules are larger and have more pus. Pustules also usually have a yellow or white head.

Sulfur isn’t a strong enough treatment for moderate acne. Overall, it’s less effective than other acne ingredients, such as benzoyl peroxide. You might consider another OTC product instead, such as ProActiv Emergency Blemish Relief.

Severe: Nodules and cysts

Severe acne consists of inflammatory nodules and cysts. These develop when your pores become extremely inflamed and irritated. They’re also deeper beneath the skin, which can make them difficult to treat. Severe acne can be painful to the touch, and it can redden and scar over time.

Given the severe nature of nodules and cysts, this form of acne isn’t treatable at home. If you’ve tried benzoyl peroxide and haven’t seen results, sulfur likely won’t work either. You’ll need to seek treatment from a dermatologist.

They may recommend a prescription such as an antibiotic or a vitamin A derivative called isotretinoin (Accutane). Surgery may be needed to remove stubborn cysts.


If you have a history of acne breakouts, chances are that you might also have a few acne scars. These can range in color and size, but acne scars have one thing in common: They’re difficult to get rid of.

Because sulfur dries up and removes dead skin cells, it could — in theory — reduce the appearance of scars too. However, sulfur shouldn’t be your first line of treatment. For stubborn scars, consider a skin-lightening agent, such as Admire My Skin Ultra-Potent Brightening Serum.

Sulphur could be key ingredient to clearing acne for good, experts say

Whether you’re a hormonal teen or a fully-fledged adult, acne is no picnic.

Sulphur might be better-known for its distinctive egg-like stench than its skin-boosting properties, but the natural mineral has actually been used in skincare regimes for centuries and has been proven to combat an array of skin conditions, such as acne, eczema and psoriasis.

Thankfully, an increasing number of skincare brands have started incorporating sulphur into their product formulas, meaning it’s not really necessary to soak yourself in daily sulphur baths like the ancient Romans used to do in order to see the benefits.

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Sulphur has natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, meaning it can clear bacteria from the pores that would otherwise lead to acne and also help to prevent new bacteria from manifesting on the skin’s surface.

It also reduces the production of sebum in the skin, which leads to oiliness.

This process dries out the skin, which can be beneficial for acne-sufferers who are prone to excess oil production that can lead to breakouts.

“Sulphur was first reported to be useful in acne in 1949 and several early studies in the 1950s showed it to be beneficial,” explains Dr Tim Clayton, a dermatologist and acne expert based in Manchester.

“It went out of vogue for many years. It has effects on peeling the surface of the skin and is anti microbial. It may cause irritation and dryness and some patients may not tolerate these side effects. Sulphur used topically in creams can be of benefit in milder cases of acne,” he told The Independent.

Sulphur has also been hailed as a keratolytic because it works by peeling away the top layer of the skin when it’s applied, taking dead skin cells with it and revealing a fresh layer of unblemished skin to flourish in its place.

Some skincare experts praise the mineral as a natural exfoliate too.

“Dermatologists use a diluted variation of sulphur in creams as it is a very good descaling agent for the skin and gets rid of excess keratin flakes and scale,” Dr Adam Friedman told The Independent.

A spokesperson for luxury skincare brand Gazelli added that sulphur is used in a lot of face masks and can be used to help control dermatitis.

“Sulphur plays an important role in maintaining healthy connective tissue, metabolising fats and regulating blood sugar,” they told The Independent.

“It improves the texture, volume, suppleness and sheen of hair.”

However, like with most things, it’s not necessarily right for every skin type and can actually be harmful to some people, particularly those with dry or sensitive skin.

Due to its high pH balance, it can exacerbate skin irritations by disrupting the skin’s protective layer, so it’s always worth consulting a dermatologist before you start using sulphur-infused skincare products.

Not to mention the fact that it smells rather horrendous, to the extent whereby a 2012 study cited its stench as a reason for sulphur being frequently shunned from use in skincare products – what a stinker.


Sulfur is a naturally-occurring mineral that is found mostly near hot springs and volcanic craters. It has a distinct “rotten egg” smell, caused by sulfur dioxide gas escaping into the air. As a supplement, sulfur is available in two forms: dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and methylsulfonylmethane (MSM). About 15% of DMSO breaks down into MSM in the body. Both have been touted as treatments for pain.

MSM occurs naturally in some plants, such as horsetail, fruits and vegetables, some grains, and milk. MSM is important in joint health and helps form the connective tissues including cartilage, tendons, and ligaments. It may also reduce pain by slowing the nerve impulses that transmit pain signals.

DMSO is a chemical byproduct of paper making and is used as an industrial solvent, as well as for medicine. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved DMSO for intravesical use. That means it is instilled in the bladder by a doctor to treat interstitial cystitis. DMSO is also used in creams and taken by mouth for pain and other conditions. Unlike MSM, DMSO is absorbed through the skin.

Never use industrial-grade DMSO as a supplement. It may contain dangerous impurities. Talk to your doctor before taking DMSO internally or applying it to your skin.

Mud baths containing sulfur, often called balneotherapy, can help treat skin disorders and arthritis. Balneotherapy is one of the oldest forms of pain relief for people with arthritis. The term “balneo” comes from the Latin word for bath and means soaking in thermal or mineral waters. Some people claim these baths are useful for allergies and respiratory problems. But there is no scientific evidence for these uses.

People also apply sulfur products to the skin to treat acne and other skin conditions.

Many studies suggest there may be a connection between sulfur gases in the environment and the rise in allergy and respiratory illnesses, particularly asthma.

Skin disorders

Sulfur baths, and other methods for applying sulfur to the skin, may help treat:

  • Acne
  • Rosacea
  • Psoriasis
  • Eczema
  • Dandruff
  • Folliculitis, infected hair follicles
  • Warts
  • Pityriasis versicolor. A long-lasting skin disorder characterized by patches of skin that are a different color from the usual skin tone.


  • Balneotherapy. Well-designed studies, most conducted in Israel, suggest that balneotherapy can help treat several different kinds of arthritis, including osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and psoriatic arthritis. People who took sulfur baths and other spa therapies saw improvements in their strength, had less morning stiffness, had better walking ability, and experienced less inflammation, swelling, and pain in their joints, particularly in the neck and back. Mud packs and Dead Sea salts dissolved in a regular bath tub also improved symptoms of arthritis, but not as effectively as soaking in the Dead Sea itself.
  • MSM. MSM is a popular supplement for treating the pain of arthritis, including both OA and RA. But there is not much scientific evidence that it works. One preliminary study suggested that 6,000 mg of MSM did improve pain and function without side effects in people with OA of the knee. Some preparations combine MSM with glucosamine to treat OA. One study suggests that this approach might help More research is needed.
  • DMSO. Several studies suggest that DMSO creams may reduce pain and swelling in people with RA and OA. But not all studies agree. Some find that DMSO is no better than placebo. More research is needed.

Allergic rhinitis (hay fever)

One preliminary study found that taking 2,600 mg of MSM per day for 30 days reduced symptoms of seasonal allergies. More research is needed.


Topical DMSO has been proposed as a treatment to relieve pain and inflammation of shingles (herpes zoster). Some evidence suggests it may reduce the number of lesions and lower inflammation. More research is needed.

Interstitial cystitis

Although research is limited, the FDA has approved DMSO to treat interstitial cystitis, a chronic bladder inflammation that causes frequent and nighttime urination, as well as pain. When DMSO is used to treat interstitial cystitis, a doctor inserts a liquid solution of DMSO directly into the bladder. General anesthesia may be needed because the procedure can be painful and may cause bladder spasms.


Several case reports suggest that DMSO, applied in creams or taken by mouth, may help treat amyloidosis, a condition where protein builds up in the body’s organs and damages them. However, because the condition is rare, there are no scientific studies about DMSO and amyloidosis. Take DMSO, or apply it in creams, only under your doctor’s supervision.

HomeopathySulfurSulphur / Flowers Of Sulfur / Brimstone

The homeopathic remedy sulfur is prepared from mineral sulfur and is used to treat several health conditions, especially skin problems. In fact, very ancient societies around the world were familiar with mineral sulfur and it has been referred to as brimstone in the Bible. Therefore, it is not surprising that people in the ancient times were also aware of the therapeutic properties of mineral sulfur and have been using it as a medication for about 2,000 years to treat several skin conditions, for example scabies (a skin infection caused by the mite called Sarcoptes scabiei).

In fact, most of us are very familiar with the word sulfur for various reasons. The mineral as well as its various properties were well known to the people in ancient times and, hence, it is not surprising that the mineral has been in use for over 2,000 years now. People in the ancient times discovered the therapeutic properties, especially sulfur’s antiseptic attributes, of this mineral and used it as a medication to clean the skin as well as the blood. Besides its use in medicine, mineral sulfur is extensively used commercially, especially in the production of gunpowder, dyes and fungicides.

In homeopathy, physicians are likely to prescribe the medication sulfur in highly watered down doses to cure health conditions. It is especially effective for treating the skin disorders that go together with tetchiness, severe itching, scorching aches as well as disgusting smells. It is important to note that the homeopathic remedy sulfur is prepared from unpolluted mineral sulfur powder. This pure sulfur powder is diluted by adding plenty of milk sugar (lactose) or a solution of water and alcohol.

Individuals who respond best to the homeopathic remedy sulfur are those who have an inclination to become creative and ingenious, but usually do not possess practical or common sense. In addition, such people are generally all mess up and in numerous instances, they may also be philosophical in nature instead of being realistic. People requiring the homeopathic medication sulfur actually get pleasure from accepting appreciation and exert a great deal of energy to convey their contemplations for other people. However, to other people, the nature as well as approach of such individuals may seem to appear as indolent and even self centered.

It may be noted here that the mineral sulfur has basically been related to fire for all time. In fact, sulfur is a highly inflammable substance that burns with a disgusting odour, which one may get a whiff of at the sites of active or eruptive volcanoes. Placing sulfur powder on one’s skin will result in a burning sensation accompanied by irritation, which makes it all the important as a medication in homeopathy. In fact, the color of natural sulfur is yellow, which reminds one of the mineral’s flaming resemblances.

People said to be belonging to the Sulfur type are known to be very fiery or hot in every sense of the term. It may be noted that people have always considered fire to be a symbol of the Divine Spirit in mankind – something that illuminates the clay of the physical body. Majority of the individuals belonging to the Sulfur type possess a distinctive religious aspect in them – that is somewhat motivating and not just scholarly. In addition, fire is also said to symbolize the passions, and hence, there is hardly other type of people who are more passionate compared to Sulfur, irrespective of what one is considering – the cravings for the flesh, academic, romantic love, motivation or fervent passion for almost anything anywhere. Individuals belonging to the Sulfur type always pursue all their interests with great passion. On the other hand, fire also represents anger or fury and, therefore, the energy of the Sulfur type individuals may be vented in the form of exasperation and utter wrath when whatever they might have determined to do is obstructed or when such people have a feeling that they have been victimized in some manner or the other. Last, but not the least, fire also symbolizes the ember of inventiveness and brilliance. Therefore, it is not surprising that people belonging to the Sulfur type are usually highly creative in nature, especially intellectually.

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It is interesting to note that most of the illustrious philosophical as well as scientific minds that have been documented in history were people who belonged to the Sulfur type. The list of such prominent personalities includes people like Socrates, Einstein and also many of the best composers over the centuries. In effect, it may be concluded that the world would indeed be a monotonous place if the inspiration, hopefulness and weirdness of Sulfur were missing.

Parts used

Although sulfur is a very vital mineral, when it is used to prepare the homeopathic remedy sulfur it needs to be done differently and significantly because the medication is entirely different compared to how the mineral is found in its natural state. After cleansing the naturally found mineral sulfur, it is pulverized into a smooth powder. Subsequently, the finely powdered sulfur is dissolved in a solution of water and alcohol and is diluted to the desired levels. It is then triturated (pulverized into a pulp) and the resultant substance is the homeopathic remedy sulfur, and, as with any other homeopathic medication, it does not retain practically even the slightest trace of the naturally found mineral sulfur. As a homeopathic remedy, sulfur is an extremely versatile medication that is used to cure a number of ailments. Hence, it is not surprising that people often and extensively turn to this homeopathic remedy for several dissimilar uses.


Although the homeopathic remedy sulfur is prescribed for people suffering from various dissimilar ailments, it is primarily used to treat different skin conditions, especially acne, eczema, candidiasis (a fungal infection occurring in the mouth, respiratory tract and even the vagina), scabies, cradle cap (an redness of the scalp especially occurring in infants), dry scalp, ringworm as well as diaper rash wherein the skin appears to be enduringly dry, itchy, flaky, reddish. The last condition actually worsens when the affected area is scratched.

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Sulfur is also effective in treating digestive disorders such as indigestion that deteriorates following consumption of milk or any dairy product; an inclination to vomit or throw up ingested foods; hunger aches accompanied by a sinking sensation in the stomach that usually crops up around 11 in the morning and chronic diarrhea and vomiting occurring early in the morning. Such type of digestive problems is usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as a bloated stomach and a number of serious problems associated with digesting foods. The symptoms associated with this kind of digestive disorders may also include belching and flatulence (accumulation of gas produced by the gastrointestinal tract), upset stomach, redness as well as itching in the region of the anus, scorching hemorrhoids (accumulation of enlarged veins in swollen tissue at the fringe of the anus or inside the rectum), and also anal fissures (cracks in the mucous membrane of the anus). Turning to the homeopathic remedy sulfur in such cases not only helps to cure the actual condition, but also provides quick relief from the associated symptoms.

In homeopathy, sulfur is an extremely beneficial remedy for the health conditions endured by women. This homeopathic medication is effective in treating the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), such as tetchiness, headaches, sleeplessness or insomnia and excruciating menstruation. It is also useful in alleviating gynecological problems, such as painful and erratic menstruation periods, dizziness, flushing and profuse perspiration. In addition, homeopathic practitioners also recommend the use of sulfur to treat other bothersome conditions endured by women, such as burning pain, itching in the vaginal region, yellow discharges as well as any other symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) that are difficult to treat with other medications.

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Besides all the health benefits offered by the homeopathic remedy sulfur so far, it is also useful in treating certain mental problems. Homeopathic physicians often prescribe this medication for people enduring mental tension, suffering from absence of vitality and determination, absentmindedness or lack of memory, tetchiness, depression, troubled sleep accompanied by nightmares, indecisiveness as well as those who wake up early from their sleep in the morning.

The homeopathic remedy sulfur is also a beneficial medication for men, especially who have been suffering from conditions such as impotency and/ or erectile dysfunction. Such conditions generally come together with aches and itching in the penis and adjoining areas. It may be mentioned here that in homeopathy, physicians recommend the use of sulfur for treating the above mentioned health conditions in men as well as any other type of inflammation that may occur in the penis or the prostate gland.

Sulfur is also an appropriate medication for treating breathing problems that are characterized by arid and throbbing throat that also comprises an almost suffocating sensation. This condition may come together with a cold or cough along with a yellowish or green catarrh as well as distended and painful tonsils. In case the patient does not take medical assistance to cure the condition, it is likely to develop into bronchitis. Hence, most people suffering from this condition turn to the homeopathic remedy sulfur as soon as the initial symptoms begin to appear. In effect, in homeopathy, sulfur is an effective remedy for different types of breathing problems as well as infection of the respiratory tract.

Apart from the health conditions discussed above, the homeopathic medication sulfur is also useful to treating other health conditions, such as headaches, migraines, fevers, coughs accompanied by sneezing, conjunctivitis and redness of the eyes (eye inflammation) as well as aching backs, especially in the lower regions that may be caused by bending or sitting for long, standing for a prolonged period, or menstruation.


The mineral sulfur, which forms the basis of the homeopathic remedy sulfur, is found in the vicinity of the volcanic craters as well as hot springs in the United States, and Italy, Sicily.

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From Gayle Millar – Apr-28-2016 Many years ago in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) I was being treated for infected sinuses, I was first prescribed antibiotics, then sent to the physiotherapist for ultrasound treatment. Of which wasn’t very successful. Then a young woman in our hair salon told me to take a good pinch of Flowers of Sulphur once a day for a week. Then once a week then once a month if I wished to continue. I found that after the 1st week only, my symptoms had all gone. Never to suffer again. I have since helped many sinus sufferers. Think about it. When walking around New Zealand in the sulphurous boiling mud areas ones nasal passages open up resulting in an extremely runny nose. Cleansing the sinuses. From Debi – Oct-30-2013 We rescued some dogs with dog lice. Gave them all 2 pellets of homeopathic Sulfur for 3 days and bathed them in neem oil shampoo (left on for 10-11 minutes). We did 2 more neem baths every 7 days and all the lice and eggs were gone. Sulfur and neem oil are amazing and really work. We didn’t have to use any toxic products which don’t always work but damage their health and liver. From Bryn Davies – Jul-12-2013 I have a young female king charles cavalier, as everyone knows they have drooping ears. My dog’s ears were very sore and I took her to the vets, she gave me a week’s dose of steroids and a week’s course of antibiotics and charged me £30; I was told that they could send skin scrapings off for testing at a cost of £500 which I couldn’t afford. I was told by a friend about sulphur and decided to try some. I ordered some flowers of sulphur; the dog’s ears are now much better, it cleared up in 3 days, marvellous stuff. From Penny – Jan-25-2013 I have been to the vet on numerous occasions with my dog having Mange or Hot spots as they call it. Antibiotics helped for a week and then it came back. Her skin was oozing and sore, she kept licking her sores and her skin became dry and patchy. I was actually embarrassed to take her to the beach. Someone suggested an old wives tale about sulfur and I was willing to try anything. I promise you, within 2 days I noticed her sores healing, her patches being covered with hair. Her fleas seem to have disappeared. I then started giving to my moms dog who had chronic mange. I swear to you, his hair is growing back and the mange is going away. I give them a slice of bread and butter with a little coating of sulfur. I have now started taking sulfur for my skin irritations. From Yvonne – Oct-25-2012 I have found that flowers of sulphur have been effective in treating open wounds and causing the healing process to be much, much quicker. By sprinkling sulphur into open, infected wounds such as staph infections the sulphur gives an almost instant effect. I have also gotten great results in the prevention of parvovirus in dogs by sprinkling the powder in their food. Parvo was rampant at my house when an abandoned dog came to my home that was already stricken. I had several abandoned dogs that people donated considering I lived in the country. One dog died even after taking him to the vet. Hearing of this old time remedy I started sprinkling sulphur in the five gallon buckets of feed every day for a week and then once a week thereafter and the dogs who showed signs of sickness got better quickly and for the next 7 years of taking in strays I never had not one animal sick with parvovirus again.

If you have ever studied or even just heard anything about homeopathy, you’ve most likely have heard about the Sulphur homeopathic remedy.

Sulphur is our most prescribed polycrest in all of homeopathy. This means that it is one of the few homeopathic remedies that has a very wide variety of uses.

These include mental, emotional, and physical ailments that can either be chronic or acute. I will discuss more about this as you continue to read on….

To understand how Sulphur works homeopathically, it helps to learn about Sulphur’s non-homeopathic makeup and uses.

Sulphur As An Element

In nature, Sulphur is one of the nine most common elements in the solar system. It was officially recognized as an element in 1777.

It also exists in DNA as a very basic ingredient of life.

The element manifests physically as bright, lemon yellow element. It is a very soft brittle mineral with very low thermal conductivity. It cannot transfer heat very well and it retains heat on the outside. Sulphur can also manifest as brimstone.

Industrial and Allopathic Uses

Sulphur is used in creating rubber, by increasing its strength in a process known as vulcanization.

Homer’s Odyssey refers to Sulphur as an antidote to pollution. In that era and beyond, it was used as a fungicide and insecticide.

For thousands of years, Sulphur mineral baths were employed for skin and joint problems. Sulphur compounds would stick to the skin and suppress or heal symptoms.

The element is also used conventionally in treating various conditions, such as acne, eczema, bronchitis, tuberculosis, high blood pressure, and more.

Sulphur is used to enhance aromas in many foods such as wine, coffee, and coca.

It is released during the combustion of fossil fuels. One could say that the more Sulphur released via fossil fuels, the higher the living standards of the country.

In nature, Sulphur is the material found around the rims of volcanoes.

Sulphur in Homeopathy

Homeopathic Sulphur has probably more bodily affinities than any other remedy.

These include:

  • Circulation venous, portal, and abdominal.
  • Nutritive organs.
  • Mucus and serous membranes.
  • Rectum.
  • Skin (which is what Sulphur is best known for).
  • Vertex, soles.
  • Joints.
  • Gland and all major organs.
  • Chest.

Reversing Physical Suppression

As a homeopathic remedy, Sulphur involves centrifugal action, much like a volcano. This remedy tends topushes physical symptoms to the surface – the opposite of suppression.

In other words, Sulphur reverses the pathology of suppression, unless it’s not matched to the entire picture of the patient.

If it’s not matched to the entire picture of the patient, then it will just lead to more and more suppression.

A Short Summary of Sulphur

Here is a video by renowned international homeopath Misha Norland that summarizes this remedy’s numerous and various uses. If you want to read about it, then skip the video and continue reading…


People needing Sulphur tend to have very strong egos. In this context, ego doesn’t mean arrogance, rather it refers more to one’s sense of self.

They will have a fragile ego, that has both self-esteem and arrogance or vanity. This means that Sulphur-type people are very susceptible to feeling disrespected or humiliated. Their pathology is affected when their ego is threatened or attacked.

This is the main mental and emotional issue for your average Sulphur patient.

Philosophical, Deep Thinking Personality

People needing Sulphur tend to love their thoughts and ideas, and they want everyone else to be equally interested in them. They love to come up with new ideas, theories, or philosophical insights.

They may even strive to be like Moses or any similar spiritual figure.

They can also be ecstatic, religious, or philosophical about their ideas and deep concepts that they theorize about. They have a lot of curiosity, which can lead to obsession.

However, these do not get materialized. It’s not easy for Sulphur to manifest these ideas in the physical world.

On a similar note, they also love research, because it’s a great place for their ideas without much physical investment. Deep down, they believe that their ideas, research is right and you should pay attention to it.

Alternatively, they can be hopeful dreamers or visionaries that may have fantastic ideas on how to solve the world’s problems.

Service and Dedication

Sulphur people may love to write books, but they never get them published or finished. Publishers don’t recognize the genius in their books.

Because of the work that they do for themselves or others, they feel that they are working for the good of humanity and should be recognized for that.

Not having that kind of recognition from others is their core of depression.

If things don’t work out, then they can be destructive in a variety of ways. They really don’t like a partner that’s demanding or pisses them off. Not pretty…


Sulphur types are very well known in homeopathic literature to be lazy and rebellious.

They are the classic “coach potatoes” that want to be naked and loose (not in a sexual way). They just want to run free.

They have a complete disregard for rules and authority, and they like to write their own rules. This is because they think that they know better than other people. In their own words: “what I think is special is most important to me.”

Dirt and Disgust

Another major aspect of the Sulphur personality type is their utter lack of self care.

People that need Sulphur will tend to hate to bathe, and they can be dirty and unwashed. They will hate to do house cleaning.

On the flip side, they can wear strange or eccentric clothing. They are sensitive to odors. They may even have a disgust of body odor whether in themselves or others.


Sulphurs are known in the materia medica to have three major fears (among potentially may others). They are:

  • Heights, and they may have vertigo from high places.
  • Diseases and germs.
  • Fear of poverty, which drives them to save money, be cheap, and/or work hard.

Sulphur & Business

Sulphur people can be apt to be good businessmen. Sulphur kids may even start businesses early in life

They can have a positive or negative relationship with materialism; they’ll either love or hate it.

Heat Issues

A great way to know if someone needs Sulphur (although not always confirmatory) is if they absolutely cannot handle heating whatsoever.

They are simply worse from heat, and they cannot stand heat. The burning heat radiates from them so intensely (like Belladonna), that they end up needing lots of fresh air and water.

Because of this, they will tend to stick their feet out of bed, and they love cold showers.

Metaphorically, Sulphur persons will also have a very “hot” temper. They can be impatient and irritable. When they’re angry, they tend to yell and curses, but afterwards they cool down.

Hunger & Food

Strong desires for tasty foods such as spicy, sweet, pickles, and salty are very prominent in Sulphur patients.

They may love meat, and they LOVE junk food as well as beer and whiskey.

Sulphurs may have weakness from hunger and hypoglycemia.


Sulphur patients can be either obese or the opposite.

They are always hungry especially at 11AM, and they cannot wait for lunch. This is in part because of the fact that they have defective assimilation.

Also, they may experience stomach burns and may be prone to diarrhea, that can drive the out of bed in the morning.

On the opposite spectrum, they may also experience constipation with large, hard stools that are offensive and can smell of rotten eggs. This may also include an excoriated or prolapsed anus.


Sulphur is one of the top remedies for various skin issues. In fact, Sulphur has helped several of my clients with severe, chronic skin conditions.

These include, cellulitis, eczema, and much much more.

Persons needing Sulphur may have offensiveness of secretions from their skin that are excoriating and burning. They will have rough red skin that itches a lot. It’s so itchy that they’ll scratch it until it bleeds.

All Sulphur skin problems can have many types of eruptions that are worse from the following:

  • heat and sun.
  • night and the heat of bed.
  • bathing.
  • wool clothing.


Sulphur patients can have unstable circulation that produces congestion. This can lead to congestive headaches, portal congestion, or venous congestion

Because of this conestion, they cannot adopt to atmospheric changes, and as mentioned earlier, this leads to Sulphur women having intense flushes of heat.

Sulphur Kids:

Kids that really can use Sulphur will tend to be active.

They can be very messy, hungry, lazy, impatient, but can also be kind and charming. Like adults, they also will hate to bathe.

Sulphur kids will stand out by the fact that they are very curious and ask a lot of questions. During the consultation, they will constantly ask about homeopathy and the remedy given.

Their curiosity may lead them to want to touch everything that they see.

Kids will also think they know better than others. They can be argumentative, disruptive, authoritative, asserting, and even dictatorial.

Sulphur kids like to stay up and sleep late, and they are easily bored. If they have something to do, they will be fine. Otherwise, they will be complain a lot.

Sometimes, Sulphur kids may have a habit of biting their nails. They loves to play outside in the open air, if not on the computer.

Their food cravings include sweets and junk food only. They can also like olives, chilies, pickles, and peppers. Often they will eat the whole jar of any of these foods mentioned.

For teens, they additionally may have acne problems.


People needing Sulphur are generally worse from…

  • standing.
  • after sleep.
  • bathing.
  • heat and becoming heated.
  • wearing wool next to skin.
  • atmospheric change.
  • between 5-11AM.

All physical complaints will be left sided or worse on the left.

They are better by..

  • open air.
  • motion.
  • lying on the right side.

My Results With Sulphur

As of this date, I have had at least 3 notable clients that have seen major successes with Sulphur. Instead of unleashing pages on information I will briefly summarize their issues.

It should be noted that all three of these clients shared exactly the type of personality mentioned above. In fact, one of my Sulphur clients blatantly told me that he “wants to be like Moses.”

Physically they had different chief chronic ailments, among other complaints. One had cellulitis, another had paralyzing left body tension, and the other had chronic eczema. Each of them had their respective ailments for at least

To the cellulitis and eczema clients, I told instructed them to take Sulphur 30C in water once per day for three days. To the other client, I told him to take one dry dose of Sulphur 200C.

Both cases saw either complete healing or very significant improvements after a month of care, despite years of other non-homeopathic treatments!

Interested in the Sulphur Homeopathic Remedy?

I hope you found this article to be interesting and informative.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, simply leave a message below and I will respond as soon as possible.

ArtesiaWells/iStock/Getty Images

Homeopaths use numerous types of sulfur to prepare remedies for various ailments. The first usage of homeopathy as a medical treatment dates back to the early 1800s after Samuel Hahnemann, a medical doctor in Germany, discovered the Law of Similars and began using minute doses of homeopathically prepared remedies with his patients. Homeopaths began using sulfur as a remedy since that time. Hahnemann said, in his book “The Organon of the Medical Art” that sulfur’s usage as a remedy goes back as far as 2,000 years ago. Consult with a medical professional before prescribing homeopathic remedies at home.

Law of Similars

The Law of Similars bases its homeopathic philosophy on the idea that what makes a well person sick, will make a sick person well. Hahnemann collected examples of poisoning and toxicology to find his first remedies.

“Clarke’s Dictionary of Practical Materia Medica” lists the sulfur remedies Sulphur, Sulphur Hydrogenisatum, Sulphur Iodatum, Sulphur Terebinthinatum, Sulphur Acidum, Hepar sulfuris calcareum and China Sulphuratum. Sulphur is made from a solution of the “Flowers of Sulphur”. Sulphur hudrogenisatum is made from a solution of the gas. Sulphur iodium comprises a titration of the iodide of sulfur, and Sulphur Terebintinatum is made from sulphur dissolved in turpentine. Sulphuric acidum is a dilution made from sulfuric acid, and China sulfuricum is a sulfate of quinine. Hepar sulf is prepared in a crucible, combining Sulphide of Calcium, oyster shells and flowers of sulphur.


Sulfur is used as a constitutional remedy in homeopathic treatment. Itching proves the main indication for prescribing sulfur. Users can apply it externally as an ointment or in bathing salts, or take it internally in homeopathic doses. Sulfur remains a very well used and clinically documented homeopathic remedy.


The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends homeopathic sulfur to treat diarrhea in irritable children. The stool of children requiring this remedy may smell like rotten eggs and they can have a diaper rash or a red itchy ring around the anus.


According to the University of Michigan Health System, homeopathic sulfur can also treat acne. Sulfur works best when acne has the following symptoms, itchy, red, inflamed and sore skin. This acne also frequently becomes worse from bathing or getting wet.


Homeopathic remedies come in low doses as over the counter remedies. Many health food stores carry low potencies of 6x, 6c or 30x and 30c. A single dose is recommended. If improvement stops, then repeat the dose. A qualified homeopathic practitioner will advise you on what remedy repetition and potency will work best for you.

Sulfur topical

Medically reviewed by on Feb 7, 2019 – Written by Cerner Multum

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What is sulfur topical?

Sulfur topical (for the skin) is used to treat acne.

Sulfur topical may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use sulfur topical if you are allergic to sulfur.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if this medicine is safe to use if you have severe acne, or acne over large areas of skin.

Ask a doctor before using this medicine if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

How should I use sulfur topical?

Do not take by mouth. Topical medicine is for use only on the skin or scalp.

Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor.

You may need to shake this medicine before each use. Follow directions on the label.

Wash your hands before and after applying sulfur topical lotion. Also clean and gently dry the skin area to be treated.

Apply a thin layer of sulfur topical lotion to the affected skin up to 3 times per day. Rub in gently. Apply the lotion less often if your skin becomes overly dry or peels.

Do not cover treated skin with a bandage. Heat or bandaging can increase the amount of drug absorbed through your skin and may cause harmful effects.

When using sulfur topical shampoo, follow all directions on the product label. You may need to leave the shampoo on your scalp for a few minutes before rinsing.

It may take several weeks before your skin condition improves. Keep using the medication as directed and call a doctor if your symptoms do not improve.

Do not stop using this medicine if you do not see results immediately.

Store sulfur topical at room temperature. Do not freeze.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Apply the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not apply two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

An overdose of sulfur topical is not expected to be dangerous. Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222 if anyone has accidentally swallowed the medication.

What should I avoid while using sulfur topical?

Avoid getting sulfur topical in your eyes, nose, mouth, or on your lips. Rinse with water if contact does occur.

Do not use on open wounds or on sunburned, windburned, dry, or irritated skin.

Also avoid using sulfur topical on areas of eczema. Wait until these areas have healed before using this medicine.

Avoid using other acne medications on the areas you treat with sulfur topical, unless your doctor tells you to.

Avoid using skin products that can cause irritation, such as harsh soaps or skin cleansers, or skin products with alcohol, spices, astringents, or lime.

Sulfur topical side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe burning, redness, or swelling where the medicine was applied;

  • severe dryness or peeling of treated skin; or

  • new or worsening skin symptoms.

Common side effects may include:

  • mild burning, tingling, stinging, itching, or redness;

  • peeling, dryness; or

  • oily skin.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Sulfur topical dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Acne:

Cream and bar form:
Use on the skin as needed.
Lotion form:
Use on the skin two or three times a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Acne:

Cream and bar form:
Use on the skin as needed.
Lotion form:
Use on the skin two or three times a day.

What other drugs will affect sulfur topical?

Medicine used on the skin is not likely to be affected by other drugs you use. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all medicines you use, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Copyright 1996-2018 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.01.

Medical Disclaimer

More about sulfur topical

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  • Drug class: miscellaneous topical agents

Consumer resources

  • Sulfur Topical (Advanced Reading)

Other brands: Sulfoam, Sulmasque, Liquimat Light, Liquimat Medium, … +3 more

Related treatment guides

  • Acne

Sulfa drug

Sulfa drug, also called sulfonamide, any member of a group of synthetic antibiotics containing the sulfanilamide molecular structure. Sulfa drugs were the first chemical substances systematically used to treat and prevent bacterial infections in humans. Their use has diminished because of the availability of antibiotics that are more effective and safer and because of increased instances of drug resistance. Sulfonamides are still used, but largely for treating urinary tract infections and preventing infection of burns. They are also used in the treatment of certain forms of malaria.

The antibacterial effects of sulfonamides were first observed in 1932, when German bacteriologist and pathologist Gerhard Domagk noted the effects of the red dye Prontosil on Streptococcus infections in mice. It was later proved by French researchers that the active agent of Prontosil was sulfanilamide, or para-aminobenzenesulfonamide, a product of the body’s metabolism of Prontosil. By the 1940s sulfanilamide was a widely used drug. During World War II white sulfanilamide powders became standard in first-aid kits for the treatment of open wounds, and sulfanilamide tablets were taken to fight intestinal infections. Though the medicine was relatively safe, allergic reactions such as skin rashes, fever, nausea, vomiting, and even mental confusion were common. With the introduction of less-toxic derivatives and especially with the mass production of penicillin, its use declined.

Many other sulfa drugs were derived from sulfanilamide in the 1940s, including sulfathiazole (systemic bacterial infections), sulfadiazine (urinary tract and intestinal tract infections), and sulfamethazine (urinary tract infections). However, all sulfa drugs induced some of the side effects listed above, and bacteria developed resistant strains after exposure to the drugs. Within a few decades many of the sulfa drugs had lost favour to more-effective and less-toxic antibiotics.

Trisulfapyrimidine (triple sulfa), a combination of sulfadiazine, sulfamerazine, and sulfamethazine, is used in the treatment of vaginal infections, and several sulfa drugs are used in combination with antibiotics to treat a wide range of conditions, from skin burns to malaria to pneumonia in HIV/AIDS patients.

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Sulfa drugs are bacteriostatic; i.e., they inhibit the growth and multiplication of bacteria but do not kill them. They act by interfering with the synthesis of folic acid (folate), a member of the vitamin B complex present in all living cells. Most bacteria make their own folic acid from simpler starting materials; humans and other higher animals, however, must obtain folic acid in the diet. Thus, sulfa drugs can inhibit the growth of invading microorganisms without harming the host.

When trimethoprim (a dihydrofolate reductase inhibitor) is given with sulfamethoxazole, the sequential blockage of the pathway produced by the two drugs achieves markedly greater inhibition of folic acid synthesis. As a result, this combination is valuable in treating urinary tract infections and some systemic infections.

The sulfones are related to the sulfonamides and are inhibitors of folic acid synthesis. They tend to accumulate in skin and inflamed tissue and are retained in the tissue for long periods. Thus, sulfones such as dapsone are useful in treatment of leprosy.

Caring for Animal Wounds at Home

Now that you have the bleeding stopped and the wound clean and sanitized, you should take steps to see that any widely separated edges of skin are brought into a position of “togetherness” so that fast, scar-free healing can take place. Sometimes this can be done by skillful bandaging, but if this is impossible the wound may have to be sutured for best results. A word of caution: If a bandage is not required to control hemorrhage, to exclude dirt or to hold the edges of the wound together, don’t use one. Most wounds will heal more quickly if they’re exposed to the air.

In summary then, the primary considerations in dealing with any wounds are: (1) Control hemorrhage, (2) If necessary, clean the wound and keep it clean, (3) Keep the edges of the wound together, if at all possible, (4) Don’t use anything on the wound that will interfere with the normal healing process. The different species of farm animals vary greatly in the speed with which they heal. For the technical-minded, this difference is mainly caused by differences in the rate of leucocyte mobilization (LMR), or the speed with which the white blood-cells are able to get to a wound and begin to repair the damage.

Horses and ponies are by far the most difficult of all domestic animals to treat. Not only are they seemingly accident-prone, but they also panic easily when hurt and they have a very slow LMR. Sheep, goats, and poultry are sometimes prey to the ravages of dogs or wolves, but if their wounds are not too severe, they heal quickly with adequate care.

Beef cattle are usually not subject to too many injuries, but dairy cattle and dairy goats are very susceptible to damage to their udders and teats. Dogs are sometimes subjected to the unhealthy effects of encounters with barbed wire, automobiles, or other dogs or wild animals. Hogs or pigs almost never get hurt and cats are nearly immune to injuries except for the bites and scratches from the perennial, intra-species debate over who gets a date with the pretty Tabby that just moved into the neighborhood.

Many times the reason people are forced to call a veterinarian is because they fail to use any advance planning. This lack of anticipation of livestock accidents and the lack of preparation for emergencies, can be dangerous to your livestock and pets and costly to you. So, plan ahead . . . assemble the products discussed below into a first aid kit, keep it stocked, and keep it handy. You may never need to use the kit, but if you do, it will be worth it’s weight in gold.

Vaseline is a very good wound dressing. It coats a wounded surface, prevents the entrance of dirt onto the surface of the wound, and keeps the skin soft. The addition of a small amount of Iodine solution to the vaseline adds enough antiseptic qualities to make the mixture an excellent anti-bacterial.

Tincture of Iodine (Iodine in an alcohol base) is a strong disinfecting material. It’s penetrating properties recommend it for use on the navel cords of new-born animals and for injuries to the hooves of large domestic animals. It should not be used full strength on open wounds or abrasions.

Lugol’s Iodine Solution (Iodine in a water base) is less effective topically than the Tincture, but it has the advantage of being effective when given orally as an anti-infective. The dosage is 1 or 2 drops for each 5 lbs. of body weight daily. Thus, the daily dose for a 1000 lb. cow or horse would be 200 to 400 drops and since 100 drops is approximately equal to one teaspoonful, this would amount to about 2 to 4 teaspoonfuls. A 20 lb. dog would get 4 to 8 drops daily. This dose can be administered in the feed or the water, and should not be continued for longer than 10 days without a 10 day rest period between courses of treatment. Lugol’s Iodine Solution is classified as a prescription drug if you indicate to the druggist that it is to be used on humans but no restrictions are placed on any use for animals. A pint should cost less than $3.00. Never, never use any iodine products on cats unless you hate cats and are trying to dispose of them. Cats are very susceptible to iodine poisoning.


Keep plenty of CastorOil on hand. In addition to it’s well known laxative properties, it’s also a good wound dressing and it can be used for eye-drops. If rubbed liberally into warts, castor oil will generally have a curative effect on most of them. Don’t worry if you get some on your hands; castor oil is also a good hand lotion.

Pine tar is a good insect repellant. If you live in an area where “screw-worms” or “flesh-flies” are prevalent this product will help to control their attacks on wounds. Pine tar is soluble only in oil, so use castor oil or other vegetable oil to thin it to the desired consistency. It’s best to apply pine tar only to the tips of the hair surrounding a wound; this will avoid irritating the wound and causing loss of hair at the site of application. Pine tar can also be used on bandages to discourage a patient from chewing on them.

The dried or fresh leaves or roots of the comfrey plant (Symphytum officinale) are useful to speed healing in hardto-heal wounds or ulcerated areas on the skin when the macerated leaves or roots are used as a poultice on the affected area. The active ingredient in this plant is “allantoin”. a substance which stimulates the growth of epithelial (skin) cells and thus decreases the time required for healing of the wound to take place. Even though comfrey may be found growing wild, it’s best to plant some on the homestead to assure yourself of a fresh supply that you can depend upon. The plant is very easy to grow.

Cod Liver Oil or Wheat Germ Oil can be used as protectants on wounds but their greatest merit is as a dietary source of Vitamin A, D and E. These vitamins are necessary to the normal functioning of the healing process. Either one or both can be added to the ration of any injured animal or, better yet, use them regularly to insure the health of all your livestock. A healthy, well nourished animal heals much faster than one that is deficient in any one of the required dietary substances.

Include in your kit a generous supply of cloth or gauze that can be used for bandages, compresses and dressings. Don’t worry too much about the absolute sterility of these dressings so long as they are clean.

One other aspect of “planning ahead” I should mention is vaccination. While I do not recommend the indiscriminate use of any vaccine; there are two diseases commonly associated with wounds that are best prevented by routine immunization. These diseases are Rabies and Tetanus.

As you probably know, Rabies is spread by the bite of infected animals and is almost always fatal. I say “almost” because just recently one case has been cured. The vaccination for dogs is quite effective and lasts up to three years. The use of the vaccine in other animals is not generally recommended unless an unusual situation exists.

Tetanus, or Lockjaw, is a disease that all animals can get but it is most troublesome in horses. The causative organism will not grow in the presence of oxygen however: It requires a deep puncture wound that seals over and excludes air. A very effective vaccine is available for tetanus and a booster should be administered once a year. In an emergency, an unvaccinated animal can be given Tetanus Antitoxin, but it’s protection lasts only about ten days. Once symptoms of tetanus develop, treatment is usually very disappointing.

Please bear in mind that in making the above recommendations, I assume that you do not have immediate access to a qualified veterinarian. If a vet is available, do not hesitate to contact him for advice and service, especially if your efforts at first-aid do not have the desired results.

I hope you will never have to deal with a wounded animal but, if you do, please don’t ever put yourself in a situation where you’ll have to tell a vet: “Doc, I can’t understand it. I’ve tried salt, sheep dip, ashes, turpentine, spider webs, sulfur, creosote, and some stuff my granddaddy had in an unlabeled bottle; and that dang sore still won’t heal . . . ”


Dietary Sources

MSM is found in protein-rich foods, such as eggs, meat, poultry, fish, and legumes. Other good sources include garlic, onions, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, kale, and wheat germ.

Available Forms

Sulfur supplements are available in two main forms: dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and methylsulfonylmethane (MSM).

Healthy people who eat a well-balanced diet do not usually need extra sulfur. However, people who follow a vegan diet may be at risk for sulfur deficiency.

Ointments, creams, lotions, and dusting powders containing sulfur are available to treat skin rashes. Natural sulfur baths, the kind usually found at hot springs, may help ease pain associated with arthritis.

How to Take It


Do not give sulfur to a child.


There is no recommended dietary allowance for sulfur. Most people get all they need from their diet.


Because of the potential for side effects and interactions with medications, you should take dietary supplements only under the supervision of a knowledgeable health care provider.

Researchers believe MSM is safe, however, you should talk to your doctor before taking large doses of this or any other supplement. Studies show sulfur may make you more sensitive to the sun.

Do not take DMSO internally except under your doctor’s supervision. Side effects of taking DMSO internally include headache, dizziness, drowsiness, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation. Used topically, DMSO can cause skin irritation.

When applied to the skin, DMSO will drive whatever else it contacts into hte body. Take care to avoid any chemicals or lotions that are not meant to be absorbed into the body. Mixing them with DMSO can produce ill effects. Speak to your doctor.

If you have diabetes, asthma or liver, kidney or heart conditions, do not use DMSO. Never take industrial-grade DMSO.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not use DMSO.

Possible Interactions

There are no reports to suggest that MSM interacts with any conventional medications. However, DMSO may interact with a number of other medications. Talk to your doctor before using DMSO.

Side effects may include allergic reactions, such as skin rashes, itching, hives, or swelling of the face, lips, or tongue. Some people may also experience redness, blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth.

Supporting Research

Barrager E, Veltmann JR, Schauss AG, Schiller RN. A multi-centered, open-label trial on the safety and efficacy of methylsulfonylmethane in the treatment of seasonal allergic rhinitis. J Altern Complement Med. 2002;8(2):167-73.

Brien S, Prescott P, Lewith G. Meta-analysis of the related nutritional supplements dimethyl sulfoxide and methylsulfonylmethane in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2009 May 27. .

D’Amato G, Liccardi G, D’Amato M. Environmental risk factors (outdoor air pollution and climatic changes) and increased trend of respiratory allergy. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol. 2000;10(3):123-8.

Kim LS, Axelrod LJ, Howard P, Buratovich N, Waters RF. Efficacy of methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) in osteoarthritis pain of the knee: a pilot clinical trial. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2006 Mar;14(3):286-94.

Moldwin RM, Evans RJ, Stanford EJ, Rosenberg MT. Rational approaches to the treatment of patients with interstitial cystitis. Urology. 2007 Apr;69(4 Suppl):73-81. Review.

Pain. MSM: does it work? Harv Health Lett. 2000;25(10):7.

Parcell S. Sulfur in human nutrition and applications in medicine. Altern Med Rev. 2002;7(1):22-44.

Ring J, Eberlein-Koenig B, Behrendt H. Environmental pollution and allergy. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2001;87(6 Suppl 3):2-6.

Simon LS, Grierson LM, Naseer Z, et al. Efficacy and safety of topical diclofenac containing dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) compared with those of topical placebo, DMSO vehicle and oral diclofenac for knee osteoarthritis. Pain. 2009;143:238-45.

Theoharides TC. Treatment approaches for painful bladder syndrome/interstitial cystitis. Drugs. 2007;67(2):215-35. Review.

Usha PR, Naidu MUR. Randomised, double-blind, parallel, placebo-controlled study of oral glucosamine, methylsulfonylmethane and their combinations. Clin Drug Invest. 2004;24:353-63.

Verhagen AP, de Vet HC, de BIE RA, Kessels AG, Boers M, Knipschild PG. Balneotherapy for rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis (Cochrane Review). In: The Cochrane Library. Issue 4, 2000. Oxford: Update Software.

von Mutius E. The environmental predictors of allergic disease. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2000;105(1 Pt 1):9-19.

Wolverton. Comprehensive Dermatologic Drug Therapy. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders. 2012.

Review Date: 10/19/2015
Reviewed By: Steven D. Ehrlich, NMD, Solutions Acupuncture, a private practice specializing in complementary and alternative medicine, Phoenix, AZ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by the A.D.A.M Editorial team.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only — they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., a business unit of Ebix, Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap

Generic Name: Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap (SUL fyoor & sal i SIL ik AS id)
Brand Name: Fostex Medicated, SAStid

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Sep 13, 2019.

  • Overview
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  • Reviews
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Uses of Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap:

  • It is used to treat dandruff.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap?

  • If you have an allergy to sulfur, salicylic acid, or any other part of sulfur and salicylic acid soap.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If a large area needs to be treated.

This medicine may interact with other drugs or health problems.

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take sulfur and salicylic acid soap with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take sulfur and salicylic acid soap. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Certain acne products that contain benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid can rarely cause very bad and sometimes life-threatening allergic reactions or very bad irritation. Before first use, you may need to follow certain steps to make sure you do not have an allergic reaction. Use sulfur and salicylic acid soap as you were told by the doctor or read the package label. Talk with the doctor.
  • Use of other skin products while using sulfur and salicylic acid soap may cause more irritation.
  • Do not put on irritated skin.
  • Do not use sulfur and salicylic acid soap on birthmarks, moles, or warts with hair growth; or cervical, genital, or oral warts.
  • Talk with your doctor before you use other drugs or products on your skin.
  • This medicine may cause harm if swallowed. If sulfur and salicylic acid soap is swallowed, call a doctor or poison control center right away.
  • Do not give to children and teenagers who have or are getting better from flu signs, chickenpox, or other viral infections due to the chance of Reye’s syndrome. Reye’s syndrome causes very bad problems to the brain and liver.
  • Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using sulfur and salicylic acid soap while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

How is this medicine (Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap) best taken?

Use sulfur and salicylic acid soap as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • Do not take sulfur and salicylic acid soap by mouth. Use on your skin only. Keep out of your mouth, nose, and eyes (may burn).
  • If you get sulfur and salicylic acid soap in any of these areas, rinse well with water.
  • Wash your hands before and after use. Do not wash your hands after use if putting this on your hand.
  • Avoid putting on healthy skin.
  • Wet with water before use.
  • Put on affected part, lather, and rub in gently.
  • Rinse treated part with water and pat dry.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Put on a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not put on 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Very bad skin irritation.

What are some other side effects of Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Dry skin.
  • Skin irritation.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Soap?

  • Store at room temperature. Do not freeze.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.

Consumer information use

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about sulfur and salicylic acid soap, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Medical Disclaimer

More about salicylic acid / sulfur topical

  • Side Effects
  • During Pregnancy
  • Dosage Information
  • Drug Interactions
  • 4 Reviews
  • Drug class: miscellaneous topical agents
  • Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Lotion
  • Sulfur and Salicylic Acid Shampoo
  • Salicylic acid and sulfur Topical (Advanced Reading)

Other brands: Meted, Fostex Medicated, Fostex Medicated Cleansing Cream, Pernox, … +2 more

  • Acne
  • Dandruff

Sulfur is present in a number of acne treatments, including face washes, creams, ointments and more. The element has been used historically for its antibacterial and skin cell turnover properties. Because sulfur can cause skin to dry and/or flake, there are side effects associated with the application of sulfur-containing acne treatments. While carefully following the directions listed on your sulfur acne product will help, carefully observe your skin for the following side effects, reducing application as needed.

Skin Irritation

Sulfur’s strong chemical properties can cause skin irritation, such as redness, warmth, itching or flaking. This is typically a sign of the sulfur working to encourage cell turnover and release built-up oils in the skin. If the irritation is too severe or uncomfortable, cease using the product or apply it to a lesser degree. This irritation also may occur following a few days of use. Over time, you can typically increase application as the skin becomes more acclimated to the treatment. You also may wish to apply a soothing moisturizer to reduce drying or redness.

Skin Discoloration

Significant proportions of sulfur in acne treatment products has been associated with skin discoloration. Because sulfur can cause facial cell turnover, the areas of turnover may appear white, gray or even black. If the discoloration seems to spread or does not improve over time, cease using the sulfur agent.


Sulfur has a strong smell that can be displeasing to the user. The smell can ultimately lead to headaches. If you experience frequent headaches because of the odor of sulfur, ask your doctor if fragrance can be added to the treatment or if a weaker sulfur solution can be substituted.

Other Concerns

Applying sulfur to the face has been known to cause allergic reactions in some people. While the reaction can range from mild (skin rash) to severe (difficulty breathing, swelling of the airway, facial swelling or hives on the face or body). If any of these symptoms occur, cease usage of sulfur acne treatments as symptoms could potentially worsen with each application. Significant allergic reactions, particularly difficulty breathing, may require medical attention.

Sulfur can react negatively with prescription-strength acne products, including Accutane or Differin. If you are currently using these products, consult your physician before using sulfur as significant irritation may occur.

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