Beauty 101
Hydration Reinvented: How Hyaluronic Acid Can Save Your Skin
Rachel Gibbons Beauty Expert
Hydration Reinvented: How Hyaluronic Acid Can Save Your Skin

Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a natural-occurring carbohydrate that is able to hold over a thousand times its weight in water with one gram holding up to six litres! The molecules bind to water to help retain moisture, leaving your skin looking healthier, supple and radiant. As it is a humectant, it increases hydration to your skin by continuously drawing moisture from your surroundings. Not only does it hydrate, but its antioxidant-like properties also strengthens your skin’s natural barrier, acting as a shield against free radicals and other environmental aggressors, besides smoothening the skin and increasing skin cell regeneration. What’s more? This miracle molecule reduces the appearance of wrinkles, redness and pigmentation.

Some products contain HA in the form of sodium hyaluronate or potassium hyaluronate, so keep your eyes peeled for that! You only need one product containing the standard concentration of 2% HA per solution to see an improvement in your skin in as little as 2 weeks. Try to opt for products that explicitly state they contain a variety of high and low molecular weight HA molecules as due to its high molecular weight, some of the molecules will not be able to penetrate into your skin.

HA penetrates easily, thus works perfectly when applied topically. Its weightless feel doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy. It works well with all types of skin as it is non-irritating and doesn’t trigger any allergic reactions or breakouts with those having dry skin or mature skin reaping the most benefits. Although HA works well with most ingredients, be careful to not mix it with products containing acids with low pH levels as it will decrease the effectiveness of the molecule.

I put this to the test by trialling The Ordinary’s Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 serum (containing three sizes of HA molecules for greater effectiveness) on my sensitive, combination skin. The results? Speechless. The lightweight, cooling serum sunk into my skin seamlessly and I immediately felt a difference with my skin’s thirst being quenched, leaving it feeling hydrated and plump without that greasy feel, tackiness or any irritation. 

I incorporated it into my skincare routine twice a day and after about three weeks, my skin was noticeably smoother, firmer and retained moisture better, having a pillowy feel. In the morning, I cleansed my face first, next I applied toner, then the serum, after that, I followed up with a moisturiser and sunscreen before starting my makeup. My makeup went on flawlessly thanks to the serum, giving my face a dewy finish. I also noticed that my skin had cleared up and was less prone to breakouts in certain areas.

This HA serum is perfect for both day and night use leaving my skin feeling refreshed and supple. However, if you have very oily skin and live in a humid climate I wouldn’t recommend using it during the day as it might feel too heavy and sticky. Applying after cleansing and toner but before your moisturiser as part of your night time skin routine should be sufficient. One should also note that overusing HA may lead to extreme dryness. 

I will definitely be repurchasing this product and I am so glad about this new addition to my skincare routine, my skin has not felt this glowy, bouncy and full of moisture in a long time. If HA is not already part of your routine, what are you doing? Add it now! 

As we get older and our skin becomes weathered from exposure to UV rays and pollution, our skin produces less HA, thus we need to replenish by applying serums and moisturisers containing this ingredient. Check out some products containing HA that you can add into your routine to help you achieve that radiant and youthful glow!

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