There is a world of ingredients to use in formulating skin care, but one ingredient stands out in a class of its own: hyaluronic acid. This is the ingredient that everyone in the industry has been talking about for the last few years. Hyaluronic acid has been added to injections in doctor’s offices and is touted in most brands of skin care that are on the market. Why is there so much excitement about hyaluronic acid, what are its benefits for skin, and how can you make the most of it in your skin care regime? Here is the info on what it is, where it comes from, and why you need it.
First of all… What is Hyaluronic Acid?
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally found sugar, or polysaccharide, which is found in the human body. It can hold 1000 times its weight in water, which is maybe the one thing about it that has been most publicized in the media. We are born with plenty of hyaluronic acids in our cells that help the skin retain hydration. As we age, our internal stores of hyaluronic acid begin to decline, which begins the aging process and the loss of protection against things like free radicals and environmental stressors. Hyaluronic acid benefits include healing skin wounds and are also what naturally gives younger people that plump rounded youthful look in the skin.
Hyaluronic acid is a natural humectant, which means that it draws moisture to the skin. It helps retain moisture in the skin and instantly makes the skin appear more youthful and moisturized. Our skin requires several elements to retain a youthful appearance: collagen, elastin, and hyaluronic acid. Benefits from these include delaying the formation of early wrinkles, and minimizing the appearance and development of skin spots and sagging of the skin, particularly on the face and hands.
How Can We Slow the Aging Process?
Being exposed to the sun only worsens and accelerates the aging process. The old adage of staying out of the sun and wearing sunscreen is really a good one. The less time the skin, particularly on our faces, is exposed to the sun, the less we have to worry about trying to do damage control, but there are other ways we can help our skin retain its health and moisture.
Have you heard the expression “you are what you eat”? It really is true. The more healthy a diet you eat, the more it reflects in clear and healthy skin. The addition of antioxidants in your food on a regular basis is integral to the overall health of the entire body, which is also reflected in the skin. When you are choosing vegetables, look for ones rich in antioxidants, which are the bright colors, red, purple, orange and green.
Studies have also shown that healthy exercise keeps us mentally and physically younger as well. A regular exercise routine may help your body keep up its production of hyaluronic acid for a longer period of time. Anything you can do to stay active and eat a diet rich in healthy fats and antioxidants will keep your skin plump and moisturized from within longer.
What About Skin Care?
Many studies have been done on the benefits of hyaluronic acid for skin care. A basic skin care routine using natural products can help you retain clear and healthy skin. The addition of hyaluronic acid into the skin on a daily basis can have a direct effect on the skin cells by plumping the skin and keeping it youthful feeling and elastic longer.
Serums containing humectant-rich hyaluronic acid are great additions to your skincare routine. Serums are lightweight, and hyaluronic acid is very lightweight too, so any skin type, even oily skin prone to breakouts can use this type of serum. Make sure that the serum that you choose is free of ingredients that might cause your skin to break out if you're acne-prone. Apply the serum before your usual face cream. Hyaluronic acid can also be applied in the same way before your night cream at bedtime.
Hyaluronic acid is also showing up in masks and is a popular ingredient at the spa if you are getting a facial. It is also something that many people are getting as injections at their dermatologist’s office as well if you are into that sort of thing. The injections are designed to stimulate further production of collagen and hyaluronic acid.
Don’t Forget Hyaluronic Acid Humectants for your Sensitive Skin Areas!
A commonly overlooked area in skin care is the under eye area. In order to keep this area from getting dry, itchy or irritated, make sure that you are including a gentle eye serum as part of your daily skin care routine. Using an eye serum which is rich in hyaluronic acid, like our Awaken Eye Serum, twice a day, is key to moisturizing and reducing the appearance of fine lines and discoloration. A tiny drop of serum is all that is needed under the eye area, remembering to keep all eye products about a half an inch away from the eye.
However you decide to use hyaluronic acid products for your skin, it doesn’t take much of this powerhouse ingredient to really start to see results in your skin. Remember, facial skin care is more than just washing your face, and your skin is happiest when it is hydrated!