If there’s one “trendy” skin care ingredient whose benefits are truly worth your time, it’s probably hyaluronic acid. Find out what’s behind this popular consumer ingredient.
What is hyaluronic acid?
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a type of sugar that your body makes naturally: a long-chain carbohydrate found in our bodies and primarily in our skin.
It is the active ingredient in skin fillers such as Restylane and Juvéderm. When applied topically, hyaluronic acid acts as a powerful humectant, i.e. it attracts water to it. In doing so, it can both moisturize and plump the skin, giving it a feeling of hydration and softening the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and sagging skin, without adding oil.
The science behind HA
Hyaluronic acid was first isolated in the 1930s, so we have had decades to study and understand it. We know a lot about how hyaluronic acid works in the body and it has been the subject of many clinical trials, but when it comes to actual clinical trials for more cosmetic purposes, there is not much to say.
In any case, the results are there and we benefit from them. From moisturizers to serums to essences to eye creams, hyaluronic acid is found in almost all of them today.
The super moisturizer
Once it penetrates the skin, hyaluronic acid (sometimes called sodium hyaluronate) can contain up to 1,000 times its weight in water. This star active ingredient in anti-aging products comes in several molecular weights.
Different molecular weights penetrate to different levels of the skin due to their unique size. Low molecular weight HA molecules are smaller and are therefore able to reach the deepest layers of the skin. Once there, they work to maintain skin moisture levels, plump wrinkles from the inside out and restore density to the skin.
On the other hand, the higher molecular weight HA molecules are larger and are therefore too large to penetrate so deeply into the skin. These molecules stay closer to the skin’s surface where they form a protective barrier and give visible results more quickly. It is in this form that they are found in moisturizing formulas or formulas for first wrinkles.
One of the main advantages of hyaluronic acid is that it is already in your own body, so the chances of experiencing irritation from its use are quite low, even if you have sensitive skin.
Although hyaluronic acid can attract and retain moisture, it does not necessarily prevent this moisture from evaporating over time. The effects of using topical hyaluronic acid are temporary and may even fade at the end of the day. So, if you like the effect, be prepared to use it every day. This is also why it is important to maximize the benefits by adding an occlusive or emollient ingredient to your daily routine.
Why is it so essential to keep skin hydrated?
Skin hydration is an integral part of overall skin health and helps fight multiple skin problems. A moisturized complexion will not only look healthier and younger, it will also help combat greasy feeling and protect skin from environmental irritants.
When your skin is optimally moisturized, skin cells function properly and are better able to maintain skin protection while maintaining normal functions.
Discover Réponse Corrective, our line based on hyaluronic acid with the addition of dehydrated HA filling spheres, the latest technology in cosmetics. These continuous release spheres provide optimal comfort throughout the day and swell on contact with water to provide better results on deep wrinkles.