Hyaluronic acid is no longer the world’s best-kept secret, we all see the terms hyaluronic acid, HA, or sodium Sodium Hyaluronate on the back of many beauty products, and it should be a key part of anybody's skincare routine.
Whether you're looking to hydrate your skin, give it a boost, or smooth it out, there are many reasons to have this wonder HA serum in your life, but if you're looking for more than one reason, here are 15 undeniable reasons you should be using hyaluronic acid and holding it close.
1. It Hydrates the Skin
There is no better way to describe the benefits of hyaluronic acid without talking about what its primary function is. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally-occurring substance found in the human body and is present in the skin, keeping your complexion plump and hydrated.
Hyaluronic acid is responsible for approximately 30% of the skin's ability to bind moisture because it is a humectant, drawing moisture in through the top layer of skin known as the epidermis, penetrating it with moisture to provide long-lasting hydration. In fact, HA can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water!
It is the equivalent of your skin slugging down an entire water cooler, making your skin look extra soft and supple. If you are looking for a tool to combat dryness, hyaluronic acid in serum or cream form can boost your skin’s hydration levels.
2. It Improves Skin Texture
Hyaluronic acid is an invaluable tool to make our skin look younger, which works by smoothing the texture of the skin, resulting in that silky smooth finish that you can't just see, but feel. If you have scars on your skin that came about from teenage problem acne, hyaluronic acid works to fill in those scars.
Using this in combination with a tool like a derma roller can smooth your skin out, which doesn't just ensure that you've got a finer texture where it counts, but it makes you feel better in yourself.
When you have a smoother skin texture, this will result in an improved, more even skin tone, and ensures your skin is clear, shiny, and free from hyperpigmentation (that makes parts of your skin darker than others), wrinkles (that make you look and feel older than your years), and the dreaded dryness (that feels horrible to the touch).
3. Reduces Inflammation
Hyaluronic acid boasts anti-inflammatory properties and plays a key role in a number of skin processes. While hyaluronic acid is naturally present in the skin, it needs to increase in concentration when things need repair, and can regulate inflammation levels in the body, signaling the body to build more blood vessels.
Hyaluronic acid is not just something used in skin care, but, in different forms, it has been used to speed up healing after tooth surgery, remove ulcers, and reduce gum disease, while also reducing the risk of infection when applied to open wounds.
4. Speeds Up Wound Healing
Because hyaluronic acid is so good at regulating inflammation levels, this has been used to speed up wound healing by promoting cell regeneration, making it a great choice for people who experience acne, scars, or blemishes.
Here comes the science part! Hyaluronic acid is considered a key player in the tissue regeneration process and can modulate inflammation, angiogenesis, and cellular migration, which are all needed to stimulate wound healing.
5. Boosts Collagen Production in the Body
Collagen is the most common protein found in the body and is present in ligaments, fat, and tendons, essentially the pieces our body needs to fit together! When our collagen levels are healthy, we can see it, as we have a youthful appearance. When combined with elastin, another type of protein in the body, they work to give skin a youthful texture and shape.
There are many ways to boost collagen in the body, but hyaluronic acid is fast becoming the tool of choice to promote collagen production and reduce lines on the skin. Research conducted in 2020 found using combinations of hyaluronic acid and a purified polynucleotide (a DNA-containing compound) boosted the quality and amount of collagen in the skin, which can boost its elasticity.
Taking hyaluronic acid does not just boost collagen so you look more youthful but you are taking the steps to prevent cellular damage as you age.
6. It is the Ultimate Aftersun Treatment
The sun provides numerous benefits, including being a source of vitamin D, but if we have too much without adequate protection, the damaging effects on our skin can include sunburn, premature aging, dry skin and wrinkles, and potentially skin cancer. A daily application of a HA serum can calm the inflammation generated by the skin arising from daily sun exposure.
Considered one of the safest skincare ingredients to apply, you can wear HA in the sun but you have to remember it is not sunscreen. If you are using hyaluronic acid serum in the sun, you need to use sunscreen to protect your skin from UV rays.
When protecting yourself from the sun, you should use a broad-spectrum SPF-50. Using HA in combination with other products can also provide a greater dose of protection:
Vitamin C-enriched products are safe to use on all skin types and will not make your skin more vulnerable to sunburn, protecting your skin from sun damage. Vitamin C is an antioxidant shown to protect against damage done by UV rays and minimize sunburn, while also promoting collagen and helping with pigmentation. Applying vitamin C before sunscreen or in combination with hyaluronic acid and sunscreen can give you better protection.
This is a beta hydroxy acid that occurs in plants, and can act as a topical, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory agent to promote exfoliation, which can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. HA can prevent some of the sensitivity we get when we use salicylic acid.
These both work in combination with hyaluronic acid, but make sure you are using a broad spectrum SPF-50 and reapply it every two to three hours when out in the sun.
7. It Boosts Your Skin’s Elasticity
As we get older the elastin in our skin breaks down, resulting in our skin not being able to bounce back like before. You can try this with a skin-pinching test; if a bit of skin on the back of your hand bounces back into place quickly, you've got a good degree of elastin in your skin.
Hyaluronic acid is not going to replace elastin, but over time, prolonged use can help to reduce the sagginess in the skin and promote tightness. As hyaluronic acid fills the skin with moisture, this tightens the overall complexion.
It's not just going to ensure that you feel better in yourself, but you won't feel so inclined to do that skin pinch test every day! The more youthful we look, the better we feel. Hyaluronic acid is a great way to get that bounce back!
8. Enhances the Skin Barrier Function
HA is an amazing moisturizer for the skin as it penetrates the skin's barrier, creating moisture from the inside out, but it can also regenerate the lipids in the skin’s barriers, which helps the skin hold water more effectively.
Hydration is essential to maintain the health of your skin barrier and enhancing this function by topping up your skin's protective film, known as the hydrolipidic film, can play a crucial role in regulating water loss. This film consists of perspiration, water, sebum, and lipids, which all work to protect your skin against external concerns like bacteria, free radicals, and maintain the skin’s acid levels, which is crucial for the body's ability to defend itself against pathogenic bacteria.
One of the best ways to start caring for your skin is to hydrate it. When our skin loses hydration, it becomes dehydrated and loses its vitality. You can tell if you have dehydrated skin because you may notice dullness, circles under the eyes, more noticeable fine lines, and itchiness. Dehydration is not good for our bodies, and if you drink more than your fair share of water, a hyaluronic acid serum will regenerate the lipids in the skin's barriers to help your skin hold water more effectively, keeping the cells in balance, and protect the skin from free radicals and other external toxins.
9. It is Non-Irritating
If you improve the water content in your skin, you will strengthen the water barrier, reduce fine lines, and calm irritation. Hyaluronic acid, in its original state, is tolerated by most skin types. As hyaluronic acid is a naturally forming substance in the body (and is even present in our tears), it stands to reason that we can all tolerate hyaluronic acid.
Hyaluronic acid works with a number of skincare products, so if you are looking to jump on the HA bandwagon but you have spent a long time finding the right products due to sensitive skin, hyaluronic acid in its purest form can be a great addition. But it must be noted that in rare cases, hyaluronic acid can cause irritation to the skin, which will depend on three key factors:
- The sensitivity of your skin.
- The application of HA.
The type of HA you use.
While everybody's skin reacts differently to products, HA can potentially cause redness and irritation. The best approach is to ensure that you use the right products for your needs and follow a specific set of criteria to ensure it works for you. For example, applying it to wet skin after your shower or in a humid environment to mitigate any adverse effects. HA attracts water via the skin by pulling humidity from the outside air towards the molecule, applying it in dry air can dry out the surface of your skin.
10. Is a Great Partner in Crime With Other Skin Care Products
Hyaluronic acid is incredibly effective by itself, but it can also interact wonderfully with other beauty products and ingredients to create a stronger line of defense, including:
Hyaluronic acid works well with retinol as they balance each other out. Hyaluronic acid acts as a buffering mechanism against some of the irritation people can experience when using retinol, resulting in no irritating side effects.
Vitamin C is known for a variety of anti-inflammatory benefits, antioxidant protection, and can inhibit darker pigmentation, known as melanogenesis. HA works with vitamin C by brightening and hydrating the skin to work at dissolving wrinkles and improving the skin's appearance and texture.
Glycolic acid works as an exfoliator. As hyaluronic acid is a hydrator, this can act as the moisturizing element, resulting in brighter skin and minimizing skin irritation caused by the glycolic acid’s ability to increase cell turnover.
Glycerin hydrates the outer layer of the skin and can work with hyaluronic acid to achieve hydrated and supple skin. Glycerin works by nourishing the outer layer of the skin, while HA helps with wrinkles and fine lines, making it a winning combination.
Collagen declines as we get older, and topical collagen can work with HA to reduce the signs of aging, resulting in plump and glowing-looking skin.
11. Can Work With Any Skin Type
Whether you have sensitive skin prone to breakouts or if you are pregnant or nursing, hyaluronic acid is a safe product, regardless of your skin type. HA is typically non-irritating and works across a number of different skin types.
Using HA on slightly damp skin after applying a thicker cream or serum-based moisturizer can lock in the hydration, resulting in an immediate improvement in the hydration of your skin. You can see long-term benefits in as little as two weeks, and continued application over a number of months will revitalize your skin!
12. Is the Instant Boost of Hydration We All Need
It hydrates the skin, helps to restore the skin's natural barrier and surface, and provides an instant firming effect to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. It does so much, but it serves as a little reminder that having adequate hydration should be a key part of our overall health.
When you are not hydrated you will see it in your saggy skin, dark circles under the eyes, and a dullness. We don't let our bodies go dehydrated, and having hyaluronic acid in our lives can be that instant dose of hydration we all need.
13. It Can Balance Oily Skin
Hyaluronic acid regulates the production of sebum, which is an oily substance that protects your skin from drying out. If you have excess sebum from hormonal imbalances, heat, exercise, or genetics, using hyaluronic acid can work wonders.
When oily skin is deprived of moisture, it responds by producing more oil to keep the skin hydrated. If you have an oily complexion, a hydrating product like hyaluronic acid can maintain the balance between water and natural oils.
Many people try to remove the oil from their face, but you might be causing more problems to your skin’s overall health. When you remove the oil, it can create excessive dryness and sap hydration, but HA is an amazing tool if you hate having excessively oily skin but need more hydration.
14. Can Be Found in a Number of Products
Hyaluronic acid is a tool that you can find in a number of skincare products. From serums to moisturizers and face masks, hyaluronic acid is a great tool that you can use in a way that benefits you.
Most people enjoy the benefits of hyaluronic acid in serum form because it is easy to use and can be applied directly to the skin after stepping out of the shower. As it interacts well with a number of other skincare products, you can create a dream team of products that work together to hydrate the skin, make you feel better, and create that plump and youthful look. Just remember to use it twice daily and apply it after cleansing and toning.
15. It's Been Proven to Work!
The great thing about hyaluronic acid is that it's not just recommended anecdotally by people who have used it, but these benefits have been proven! HA has been a major topic of study in recent years because of how it works to heal wounds and how it can help beyond skin care.
Hyaluronic acid is not just a great beauty product, but it is a versatile molecule that’s been put to use in a number of different settings. People who have experienced problems with their skin over the years have tried everything to fix the issues, resulting in them feeling more self-conscious and hoping that the next product they try is the magic bullet!
Hyaluronic acid is an amazing tool that can help with acne, plump out your skin, and can help you look after your skin health. As we all get older, we can benefit from fine-tuning our skincare routine. Rather than thinking we have to lie back and let our skin show the signs of aging, hyaluronic acid is one of the most important tools we should all have as part of our skincare regime.