Regardless of the extent of your skincare savvy, you’re likely to have encountered buzz-ingredient hyaluronic acid. Lauded for its ability to deliver plump, dewy and healthy-looking skin, key to the “glass skin” K-beauty phenomenon, and responsible for the glowing formulas of the latest cosmetics, this “miracle” molecule has major cred. Like you, we’re active consumers, especially when it comes to skincare, and drilling down on formulas has become part of our purchasing process. It’s one of the reasons that hyaluronic acid’s not-so-catchy name now rolls off the tongue. The other reason? It really works.
What is it?
Hyaluronic acid is a gel-like “moisture magnet” of a molecule that naturally occurs in our skin and other connective tissues, helping it stay supple and healthy. A reduction in the amount we produce and maintain, whether through the natural ageing process or as a result of environmental factors, means drier, duller, rougher skin with more prominent fine lines and sagging. Along with eating a healthy diet, applying a topical product containing hyaluronic acid helps to replenish our skin’s stores, locking in moisture with its astounding ability to absorb up to 1000 times its weight in water.
What does it do?
Hyaluronic acid is renowned for its power to increase moisture levels and soothe and revive the skin’s appearance, instantly ﬁlling out ﬁne lines. Over time, it can also improve elasticity and help boost the skin’s protective barrier function, enabling it to repair and restore faster.
What should I look for?
It’s famously skin-friendly and compatible with all skin types, but not all hyaluronic acid is created equal. Many widely available serums and creams contain the ingredient in a “high molecular weight”, meaning the molecules are so big they can’t penetrate your skin easily enough to be of any real value. While they deliver the quick, smoothing result hyaluronic acid is famous for, the benefit is only temporary.