Anti-aging skin care is all the rage. People everywhere are constantly on the prowl for the next best thing to keep wrinkles and sagging skin at bay. And that’s part of the reason why Hyaluronic Acid is so damn popular. Sometimes called HA, this naturally produced acid isn’t like most of the other skincare acids you know and love. Instead, it’s a skin plumping, complexion hydrating hero that’s known to be one of the most renowned anti-aging and moisturizing ingredients. Here’s all the reasons why.
What is hyaluronic acid?
Our body naturally produces hyaluronic acid, and it’s a substance that not only keeps our skin hydrated and youthful but also lubricates our eyes and joints. As we age, our body’s natural hydration (meaning our naturally produced hyaluronic acid) begins to slow and break down, which is what can ultimately lead to all those fine lines and wrinkles that reveal our age.
Why is hyaluronic acid so great for our skin?
The less moisturized and hydrated your skin is, the more it tends to sag and lose its structure. Hyaluronic Acid is unique in that it holds an impressive amount of moisture — literally 1,000 times its weight in water. Crazy, right? This amazing water-holding property means hyaluronic acid can easily and effectively provide hydration, helping our skin remain supple and glowing.
When that water gets delivered into your skin, it releases and expands, helping to plump your complexion and give off that renowned glow. One of the most impressive things to note about HA is that it hydrates without over hydrating. When the skin becomes too moisturized, it no longer retains all of the key substances it requires.
It’s notable, too, that hyaluronic acid is such a gentle ingredient it can be used on any type of skin, no matter its sensitivities or conditions, and is effective at calming inflamed blemishes and red complexions.
How can I get my hands on some hyaluronic acid?
Hyaluronic Acid is widely available for tons of uses. It’s used in gel form to treat mouth sores, as an oral medication to ease the symptoms of osteoarthritis, and as a liquid during eye and cataract surgeries.
But you’re probably here because you want hyaluronic acid in your skincare, right? Sometimes referred to as the fountain of youth, hyaluronic acid is available as a skin treatment in the form of injectables, serums, and moisturizers.
The simplest, most affordable and effective way to get a boost of hyaluronic acid is in a serum — a formula of tiny molecules that deeply penetrate the skin. Serums are layered on after cleansing and before moisturizing as a way to treat specific skin ailments. For many with aging or dry skin, incorporating a serum or hydrator that’s rich in hyaluronic is a great way to plump and hydrate the skin.
You’ve also probably heard about Botox and facial fillers. Did you know that these injectable skin plumpers and wrinkle-fixers are actually filled with Hyaluronic Acid? Yep. Companies such as Allergan’s Botox, Juvéderm and Ultra Plus incorporate hyaluronic acid in their formulas that are injected into the skin to treat fine lines and wrinkles.
Is there anything else I need to know about hyaluronic acid?
Well, we’re glad you asked. The really important thing to know about hydrators — like hyaluronic acid — is that they pull moisture directly into the skin. So giving your skin a great hydrating dose of HA is super, but making sure that hydration gets sealed into your skin with a moisturizer is just as important. That’s why hyaluronic acids should always be used as a step two (of three!) in your routine — first hydrate, then moisturize.
Some formulas, like the SLMD Hyaluronic Acid Serum, actually combine hyaluronic acid with a moisturizing ingredient such as squalane, which is another natural, oil-based moisturizing ingredient. Together, they hydrate and moisturize the complexion to plump and give you that glow.