I love playing with my two-month old daughter and kissing those soft, chubby cheeks until just shy of them falling off. Seriously, how are her cheeks so darn kissable?? And why is her skin so soft all over? Besides her just being a perfect human specimen, she has hyaluronic acid to thank.
Babies are born with the highest amount of hyaluronic acid they will ever have. The amount of HA present in the body will make a slow and steady decline from there, with the most dramatic drop happening around age 40. Perfect skin is wasted on babies, am I right??
Don’t shy away from the word ‘acid’: hyaluronic acid is a super-moisturizer, making it anything but harsh or stripping. It is a naturally-occurring glycosaminoglycan (GAG), which is a fancy name for a sugar that is able to hold crazy amounts of water. HA is able to hold up to 1000x its weight in water, and is responsible for keeping your skin plump, your eyes moist, and your joints flexible. It is also a humectant, which means that it is able to draw moisture out of the air and hold onto it, making it a tall drink of water for your skin.
HA is not new to the beauty industry. Its benefits are well known and well-researched. Today it is used in countless hydrating serums and moisturizers, as well as in some injectable fillers as a means of plumping up skin from the inside.
The great part about this skin-super-food is that it’s universal – anyone can reap its benefits. As someone with oily, acne-prone skin, I know how scary the word “hydrating” can be. However, hyaluronic acid holds moisture to your skin, and when your skin senses that there’s enough moisture on the surface, it slows oil production. Thus, more HA = less oil = happier skin. Moisturize, ladies!!
It’s also great for dry, aging skin as well. HA gets into your skin and helps to plump up fine lines and wrinkles caused by sun damage and certain genetic factors. It may also fight free radical damage, potentially resulting in less UV damage (not an excuse to skip spf!). And as mentioned above, if you really want to kick wrinkles to the curb, visiting a dermatologist for hyaluronic acid fillers will almost instantly take years off.
If you’re looking for hyaluronic acid in a product, turn to the ingredients list. Some products may list it as plain hyaluronic acid. However, you may also find it listed as sodium hyaluronate or hyaluronan. It is present in many hydrating serums and in a wide variety of moisturizers. Some of my favorites are Nip + Fab Dragons’s Blood Fix Plumping Serum and Eminence Firm Skin Acai Moisturizer. Both are amazing hydrators and the Eminence moisturizer seriously smells SO GOOD.
Long story short, if you’re not using this ingredient on your skin daily, you should start. Your skin will thank you!