Do not be afraid. Though hyaluronic acid may seem like something you wouldn’t want anywhere near your face, it’s not even close to as scary as it sounds. It’s actually quite the opposite. So, what is it exactly? Do you need it in your skincare routine? Does it play well with other products? What if you have pre-existing skin conditions? Get ready to have all of your questions answered and then some.
What is Hyaluronic Acid?
Interestingly enough, hyaluronic acid is a sugar naturally produced by our bodies. It’s clear, it’s gooey and it’s mainly found in our skin, connective tissue and eyes. Its main job is to hold onto water for dear life so it can keep our tissues hydrated and lubricated. In fact, just a single gram of hyaluronic acid has the superpower strength to hold up to six LITRES of water. It also has the smarts to regulate moisture within the skins cells so they don’t drown in hydration (yes, that’s actually a thing).
Is it Considered Safe?
In short, yes! Hyaluronic acid is generally well-tolerated and doesn’t typically cause allergic reactions when used properly. It’s even safe for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Just to be sure, it’s always a good idea to do a patch test before starting any new skincare product to make sure your skin is cool with it.
Why Do You Want Hyaluronic Acid it in Your Skincare?
We think a better question to ask would be, why wouldn’t you want it in your skincare? This dry skin saviour plumps up fine lines and wrinkles, quenches your skin’s thirst and promotes that coveted dewy look – what’s not to love? When used in skincare products like creams and serums, it not only brings moisture to the surface, it holds moisture in providing continuous hydration. All. Day. Long.
How Does Hyaluronic Acid Benefit Your Skin?
The beauty of hyaluronic acid is it works great with all skin types. In general, it’s super lightweight, non-irritating and doesn’t trigger skin conditions like rosacea or acne. Here’s how it can help with some other skin conditions.
Aging – Much like collagen and elastin, the hyaluronic acid decreases in our bodies as we get older so our skin becomes dehydrated more easily. Young skin retains its enviable elasticity because of the amount of water it holds. As we age, we need a little boost, making hyaluronic acid your skin’s new BFF.
Acne – Because acne-prone skin doesn’t have a particularly strong lipid barrier, hyaluronic acid can help fill the gap by providing a little protection. By bolstering your skin’s strength, it helps keep irritants and bacteria out while reducing redness as well as the general appearance of acne.
Barrier Repair – Harsh weather, winter heaters, certain skincare products and underlying skin conditions can cause tiny tears in the skin’s protective barrier. Hyaluronic acid not only hydrates but it replenishes cell moisture to help strengthen the skin barrier.
What Type of Products Have Hyaluronic Acid in Them?
Serums and moisturizers and face mists, oh my! Hyaluronic acid can be found in a number of different skincare products on the market. Find out which one is right for you.
Moisturizers – If you’re a newbie and just looking to tip your toe into the hyaluronic acid pool, a solid moisturizer with HA is a good place to start. It’s kind of like a serum and moisturizer in one so it can be the first thing you apply after washing your face.
Serums – If you’re looking for more of a serious hit of HA, reach for a serum as it contains a concentrated amount of hyaluronic acid. Just make sure it’s the first thing you apply to your face, ahead of any other creams or moisturizers.
Face Mists – Similar to serums, face mists offer a concentrated hit of HA, just with a different viscosity. Serums are thicker and gooier, while a mist delivers a lighter layer of product. However, just like serums, it should be the first thing you apply to clean, dry skin.
Can You Use it Every Day?
You sure can! You can even use it twice a day – in both your morning and evening routines – as long as you’re applying it to clean, dry skin you’re golden. One thing to keep in mind is that hyaluronic acid shouldn’t replace any of your serums or moisturizers, it should be used in conjunction with them.
Where Does it Fit in Your Skincare Routine?
On that note, it should be the first thing you grace your face with after a fresh wash. Why? It needs to sit on that top layer of skin to really hold the moisture in so it doesn’t evaporate from the skin barrier. After that, you’ll want to lock in that moisture with a moisturizer, sunscreen and/or face oil. If you put hyaluronic acid on top of those products, it’s unfortunately not going to work.
Overall, hyaluronic acid is an awesome team player to add to your skincare arsenal. Not only is it a solid solution for those who suffer from dry skin (especially during the winter months when skin’s moisture gets zapped), it can also help improve the appearance of certain skin conditions, like acne and rosacea. It’s a skincare superhero in our books!