We’re all looking for tools to help us look our best and this includes skincare. The benefits of hyaluronic acid are undisputed. It’s a popular heavyweight in the cosmetics industry. In this post you’ll learn why hyaluronic acid is the ultimate hydrator for glowing, radiant skin.
What Exactly Is Hyaluronic Acid?
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a natural compound present in all connective tissue. Its main responsibility is to retain moisture. This is what makes it so ideal as a skin-care ingredient. One of the lovely effects of aging is the inability to hold moisture in the skin, causing it to become “thirsty.” You can see the visual effects of dehydrated skin. Not only does the lack of hyaluronic acid cause a dull complexion, it makes the skin look older.
Over time, natural secretions from glands in the skin begin to decline, accentuating dry, flaky skin. Our natural moisturizer, HA, is a glycosaminoglycan that naturally decreases as we age. That likely doesn’t come as a newsflash. Unhealthy lifestyle factors hasten the decline of HA.
Genetics play a part as well, as does smoking and nutrient deficiencies – all factors within our control. Is it time to add HA to your skin care routine? I add it to my vitamin C serum to augment the beneficial effects.
Benefits of HA
HA is an essential component of skin. Once you’ve reached age 40, you’ll start to notice its decline. One reason for this is that estrogen is an important molecular signal for the production of HA. Young women, with plenty of estrogen, have beautiful skin due to HA’s ability to stimulate collagen and retain moisture.
This is why plastic surgeons have capitalized on HA for use in cosmetic procedures, and why anti-aging skin care products include this incredible ingredient in their formulas. HA has many benefits including:
- Promotes collagen production
- Retains moisture
- Has a plumping effect
- Prevents sagging and wrinkling
- Speeds wound healing
- Reduces scarring
- Strengthens skin structure
- Increases the effects of topical vitamin C
- Adds volume and fullness
- Improves elasticity
- Reduces under-eye bags
Why, exactly, would you not use it?
HA Is A Natural Humectant
I want you to visualize a baby’s skin. See how smooth and plump it is. We can thank HA for this fresh suppleness. Babies are born with high amounts of hyaluronic acid, unfortunately it gradually declines with age, but fortunately we can enjoy the benefits of HA by using it topically, or as an injection.
Hyaluronic Acid Powder (Great for making your own serum)
HA is present in generous amounts in the spaces between skin cells, providing the necessary moisture to keep it smooth and firm. HA is responsible for that dewy, soft, supple look we all want. It’s safe, gentle, and works for all skin types. It even rights free radical-damage caused by excess sun exposure, radiation, alcohol, smoking, and toxic environmental chemicals. Preservatives in the food supply also contribute to free-radical damage.
Beloved for its high capacity for holding water, HA not only retains moisture, but prevents its loss. Think of HA kind of like a sponge. It can hold a lot of water. Another perk of HA is that it doesn’t clog pores and is anti-inflammatory.
HA’s claim to fame and rightly so, is that one gram of this amazing substance can hold up to six liters of water. Do you see why it’s so awesome for anti-aging? After applying HA to your face, be sure and lock it in with a heavy night cream or your favorite moisturizer. If your skin is really dry, apply HA to dampened skin, followed by a moisturizing cream.
Hyaluronic Acid And Hair Care
It gets even better because not only is HA good for skin, it’s also great for your hair, especially if it’s dry and fragile. The hair fiber itself has a high percentage of water. If moisture is lost, hair can break and split. When moisture is restored and the hair is hydrated, it becomes stronger and more flexible, preventing split ends and breakage. HA is particularly effective for color-treated and damaged hair. Not only is it an awesome moisturizer, it gives the hair a sleek, polished look, while restoring shine and fullness. HA will also keep your scalp healthy and prevent dandruff.
HA is also fantastic for lips, particularly ones that have lost volume. When lips are hydrated, they look and feel plumper. Lip balm with HA is especially good to use in the winter months when the air is dry. Because HA is a humectant, it attracts and binds water, keeping the lips moist and hydrated. Moist lips don’t crack or peel like dry lips do. In fact, HA is FDA-approved for lip augmentation.
HA is a tried and true natural ingredient that’s been around a while. If you want to take advantage of its many benefits, choose a serum or moisturizer that has hyaluronic acid in it. Or you can buy serums just containing HA. It really is a must, especially if you have dry or aging skin.
Do you use HA? Have you noticed a difference? Let me know in the comments:)