What is Hyaluronic Acid? And Why should you use in skincare?

Hyaluronic Acid: What the Beauty Industry may not want you to know! So we’re going to go into that today. So, in the Beauty Industry, skincare product lines, they are adding Hyaluronic Acid to almost EVERYTHING. They are adding it to cleansers, exfoliants, toners, eye products, and lotions and creams. So here’s a really quick PRO TIP: Don’t waste your money, additional money, on cleansers that are adding Hyaluronic Acid, that are touting that they have Hyaluronic Acid, or Vitamin C — any anti-oxidant ingredients– because it doesn’t stay long enough on your skin for it to even have a result. So, make sure that you get a nice exfoliating cleanser, or a hydrating cleanser, a pH balancing cleanser, but don’t spend that extra money on anti-aging or cleansers that say, “We have Hyaluronic Acid in our products!” So, it is one of nature’s most powerful humectants– and it is! — but we’re going to get into some things that the Beauty Industry may not be telling you! So here is an actual fact that the Beauty Industry touts, which is true: So one molecule of Hyaluronic Acid can hold up to 1,000x its weight in water. Or, if you can think of it, one gram of Hyaluronic Acid is equivalent to holding up to TWO of these.

So it’s a pretty powerful humectant. But, what the Beauty Industry may not tell you is, is that Hyaluronic Acid actually works more effectively if the weather is like THIS– it’s raining! So this is actually highly unusual for Southern California, so I wanted to come out here, in the rain, and show you that Hyaluronic Acid works when the environment is full of water. So if you live in a place like Southern California, Arizona, Colorado, or even Australia, Hyaluronic Acid may not work as effectively because the Hyaluronic Acid is pulling moisture from the air into your skin. And when there is LOW moisture in the air, it actually is drawing it UP from your skin. So, stay tuned for the PRO TIP to find out what you need to do to make the Hyaluronic Acid serum work for you. Hi, I’m Christy Greene with Go See Christy Beauty Boutique and here at our boutique we have been treating clients for over 10 years who struggle with Acne, who want to fight aging, as well as hyperpigmentation and other skin conditions.

So, we are going to go into what the Beauty Industry may not tell you. Okay, so the first one is, that sometimes a lot of skin care companies will pair Hyaluronic Acid with another anti-aging ingredient – such as Vitamin C. So they’ll do Hyaluronic Acid, they’ll do Vitamin C, and also with Ferulic Acid. So then it starts to kind of get clumped in together as an “anti-aging agent” or “anti-aging ingredient”. And Hyaluronic Acid actually is NOT in and of itself an anti-aging agent. Anti-aging ingredients actually will stimulate Collagen and Elastin production or help retain the existing Collagen and Elastin. And Hyaluronic Acid is simply a HUMECTANT. So for those of you who geek-out on chemistry, Hyaluronic Acid is actually an ANION GLYCOSAMINOGLYCAN. An anion is negatively charged. So, Hyaluronic Acid, is obviously from an acid, and Sodium Hyaluronate, which is more commonly used in skincare ingredients, is actually from sodium. So they are a little bit different. And Sodium Hyaluronate is a derivative of Hyaluronic Acid. Now going back to what I said, it is not an anti-aging ingredient, per se, but it can actually help with the appearance — or minimizing the appearance — of fine lines and wrinkles. And how it does that is because it’s a humectant, and if it’s drawing moisture from the air, and it’s binding it to your skin, it starts to plump up your skin, therefore minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

You see, as we age our skin cells slowly start to lose its ability to retain and hold water. So Hyaluronic Acid basically helps us with that by attracting more moisture. So in the dermal layer, that’s actually where most of the moisture is able to be retained, but as we age, in the epidermis it starts to lose its ability to hold the water every year as we age. So we create Hyaluronic Acid within our own bodies, so you CAN’T react to Hyaluronic Acid! However, as our bodies starts to age, we, our body is always fighting to replenish the Hyaluronic Acid in our body. And of course as we age, that ability lessens year-after-year-after-year. So just to give you an example, it’s constantly working to replenish that in our body. So Hyaluronic Acid in our blood, it only lasts about several minutes — one-to-three minutes — and then in our skin, about three-to-five days, generally speaking — and a lot of it depends on how old you are — so what your age is and the environment that you live in — and up to several weeks — one-to-three weeks — in our cartilage.

So the body has to constantly be replenishing the Hyaluronic Acid. So the common misconception is, sometimes the Beauty Industry kind of infers very loosely, is, is that the higher the percentage is of an active ingredient — so like anti-aging ingredient, Vitamin C, Retinol, Peptides – the better it will work for your skin. And that’s not necessarily true! Some ingredients as stronger or higher percentages or higher levels can actually give a negative effect to the skin — such as Glycolic Acid, some Retinols, and L-Ascorbic Acid — where they can actually cause a reaction or a rash– what we call in the industry “Dermatitis” — on the skin. So in the case of Hyaluronic Acid, where some products are touting that it’s 100% Hyaluronic Acid (which, that is probably not true…) you have to remember, ONE molecule can hold up to TWO of these; so it can hold up to 1,000x its weight in water. So adding any more to a product is not only unnecessary, Hyaluronic Acid in and of itself is a thick, gel-like type ingredient. So adding any more to a product is going to make the product unappealing to put onto the skin. Now the LARGE Hyaluronic Acid molecule can range, it comes in a variety of sizes, and it can actually go all the way up to several thousand-of-molecules-of-sugars long.

So the sugars are interconnected very similar to a spider-like web formation, and that’s what gives the film over the Stratum Corneum. So when it’s not bonded to other molecules it can actually bind to water, and that’s when it can actually increase the moisture level in the skin as well as lubricate the joints. This moisture then, in the lower levels of the skin, is then drawn up to the upper levels of the skin so that it can get moisture. So, if the larger Hyaluronic Acid molecule scan sit on top of the skin but too large to penetrate down into the lower parts of the skin, how does the Beauty Industry address that? They HYDROLYZE it! Hydrolysis is basically a process where they break apart the bonds in a molecule in water. So hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid is basically the result of this chemical process in which they create smaller fragments of Hyaluronic Acid making the molecules smaller in weight and size. So by offering this type of product where you’ll see, sometimes they’ll offer Hyaluronic Acid serums where it’ll say “larger molecular weight” and, or “multi-weight” Hyaluronic Acid, what they’re offering or what they’re saying is, in their Hyaluronic Acid serum they’re claiming that they have different weights in them where the larger molecules stay on top to add moisture to the skin and the smaller molecules are small enough to penetrate the epidermis increasing the moisture levels underneath the skin.

So now Cosmetic Chemists are trying to come up with a formulation where you can add something to the skin externally and stimulate Hyaluronic Acid production within the skin, and I tried to look up a lot of the research in a lot of the Dermatologist journals and Cosmetic Chemist trade magazines, and there’s still not enough information that I actually could find on that which produces long-term results. So until then, what I would recommend as a PRO TIP is if you want to spend that extra money getting the multi-weighted Hyaluronic Acid, you’re more than welcome to do so, obviously, but for me, what I would recommend is just getting a regular Hyaluronic Acid. It doesn’t constitute the increase in price until that there are more results. And then what you would do is you would actually put an OCCLUSIVE agent — which I’m going to talk about just a little bit later in the blog on how to prevent the Hyaluronic Acid from actually doing the opposite, which is DEHYDRATING your skin, pulling moisture that’s already within the skin up. So, we’ll talk a little bit about that further in the blog.

So in the mean time, I am NOT trying to change your mind and stop using Hyaluronic Acid serum. I actually LOVE using Hyaluronic Acid serum. And what I have found in my practice is that people who tend to be oily, or breakout-prone, or they’re more texture-sensitive, they tend to like Hyaluronic Acid serum more than the humectant I’m about to talk about now. So, did you know that there is a humectant that’s actually a little bit more effective than Hyaluronic Acid, not as expensive, and more readily available? And that ingredient — which once I say it– you’re going to know what it is. It is GLYCERIN. So — you’ve heard of Glycerin soaps – so Glycerin is an odorless, non-toxic ingredient that is a very strong humectant. And it can be dissolved in water and alcohol, but not oils. And if you look at a lot of your ingredients, especially lotions and creams, you actually pay attention to the ingredients in there. Usually, if it’s a very effective hydrator, it’ll say “Water” and then it’ll say “Glycerin” or in the next couple of ingredients, “Glycerin”.

When it touts that it has Sodium Hyaluronate in there and it says it has Hyaluronic Acid, it may not actually be the Hyaluronic Acid that’s putting moisture into your skin, it’s actually the Glycerin. Cause Glycerin has a higher percentage inmost lotions and creams than Hyaluronic Acid. Usually you will see the Hyaluronic Acid much lower down in the ingredients list, which may mean that the ingredient has ONE DROP in there but is actually charging you a whole lot more. So, unless you see, sometimes I will see Sodium Hyaluronate higher up on the scale. Which then, okay, they can charge a little bit more. So in most of your ingredients, take a look and see if you can see Glycerin as an actual ingredient. Okay, so here comes the PRO TIP! The first PRO TIP is: Remember how I said if you are living in a arid climate, such as California, Arizona, Australia, Colorado, that you actually need moisture from the air in order for the Hyaluronic Acid to really work effectively? Well, one of them is, at night, even places that it’s really cold — because you’re using the heater and the heater actually draws moisture out of the air — is at night, use a COOL air humidifier and that puts humidity in to the air. So when you put your Hyaluronic Acid serum on in the evening, make sure that you INCREASE the humidity in the air. So that’s the first tip. The second tip is: When you put Hyaluronic Acid in you also needs and occlusive agent — is when you use something that actually keeps the moisture from evaporating, you are creating a moisture barrier. You want to put that on top of your Hyaluronic Acid or anything that you’re using as a humectant on there. And that’s what keeps the Hyaluronic Acid, the moisture, retaining moisture within your skin.

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