Should You Use Hyaluronic Acid?
Hyaluronic acid is a carbohydrate that is found in all humans, particularly in the connective tissues of the joint, the eyes, and other internal fluids. Most importantly, it is found in the skin, with 50% of the body’s hyaluronic acid found within the skin. However, as we age, the production of hyaluronic acid slows down, and the skin and other areas of the body exhibit signs of this change.
Why do I need it?
Hyaluronic acid is helpful as a skincare ingredient because it performs many functions within the skin. Not only does it retain moisture—with 1 molecule able to hold 1,000 times it own weight in water—but it also helps cell proliferation and migration, and even assists in skin repair. It also acts as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, helping to fight off harmful free radicals to help the skin remain healthy. Studies have proven that hyaluronic acid is an effective anti-aging ingredient for skincare. In fact, in 1 study, participants reported a 40% decrease in wrinkles, a 96% increase in hydration, and a 55% improvement of firmness and elasticity after using hyaluronic acid for 8 weeks. Aside from its key role in keeping skin healthy and hydrated, hyaluronic acid also plays a role in keeping the joints moving smoothly and pain-free, and is often used to help treat osteoarthritis, particularly in the knees.
Where can I get hyaluronic acid?
There are a few different ways to incorporate hyaluronic acid into your life in order to improve the overall appearance of your skin.
- Skincare – Hyaluronic acid is becoming an increasingly popular ingredient in skincare products. Not only can you find hyaluronic acid in moisturizers, anti-aging and anti-wrinkle cream, and serums, it is also slowly making its way into cosmetics as an ingredient in blushes and foundations. When used topically, the hyaluronic acid molecules are unable to penetrate the uppermost layer of the skin, and instead hover on the surface and hang onto moisture, which is then able to be absorbed into the skin.
- Dermal fillers – HA is 1 of the most popular ingredients in dermal filler injections. Once injected intradermally, the hyaluronic acid gel is able to provide instant plumping effects, successfully filling in skin depressions such as lines and wrinkles, and smoothing out the skin for a younger appearance. Dermal fillers that use hyaluronic acid have a range of purposes, from superficial skin revitalization, to correction of severe wrinkles and facial folds, and even facial contouring and augmentation.
- Viscosupplements – This type of injection is meant for individuals who suffer from joint pain or osteoarthritis. It has even been suggested that hyaluronic acid injectable supplements can help slow or prevent the development of osteoarthritis and osteoporosis.
How do I know how much to use?
There is no such thing as having too much hyaluronic acid—because it is a substance that is native to the human body, it is very safe. That is also why it is safe for pretty much everyone—it is very rare that anyone would have an allergy or sensitivity to hyaluronic acid. When looking for a skincare product with hyaluronic acid, be sure to look for formulas that contain at least 1% hyaluronic acid.
For best results, hyaluronic acid can be combined with other ingredients. Hyaluronic acid pairs great with vitamin C, as the 2 ingredients in combination are great for stimulating collagen production for firmer skin, while also helping to improve the appearance wrinkles and dark spots.
For dermal fillers and viscosupplements, your doctor will determine the necessary amount.
How old do I need to be to use HA?
Because hyaluronic acid is so safe, it can really be used at any age! There’s no such thing as being too young to start incorporating hyaluronic acid into your skincare routine. Even if wrinkle correction is not a top priority at the moment in your skin care routine, the moisturizing abilities combined with its anti-inflammatory and antioxidants properties make it perfect for skin at any stage of life. These properties also allow hyaluronic acid to be a great defense against sun damage, which is 1 of the most important factors responsible for prematurely aging the skin. Hyaluronic acid is not only suitable for skin of all ages, but it is also suitable for all skin types—whether dry, oily, or sensitive.
How long will the effects last?
When injected into the skin with dermal fillers, the rejuvenating effects of hyaluronic acid can be seen for anywhere from 6 months to 2 years, depending on the product and the concentration being administered. Because hyaluronic acid is biodegradable, the effects of dermal fillers are only temporary, as the gel is broken down by the skin and reabsorbed into the surrounding areas. When applied topically, it is best to apply your hyaluronic acid-based skincare product all year round to see the greatest benefits.
Should I use it?
If you want to keep your skin looking young, healthy, and radiant, then you definitely need to add hyaluronic acid into your skincare routine. Whether your goal is to prevent or slow the signs of aging with a forward-thinking skincare regime, or you want to turn back the clock on some of your lines and wrinkles with hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers, there is a hyaluronic acid product suitable for your skincare goals.