What is Hyaluronic Acid & Why Is It So Popular

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What is all the hype about Hyaluronic Acid? It’s like we see the world in every beauty bottle. The branding is so on par that it immediately convinces us that this is something we need for our skin to my flawless and smooth. But what is it really?

Although somewhat difficult to say (and even harder to spell), the skin-care ingredient is commonly found in your favorite beauty items and marketed as something you need in your daily skin-care routine. That’s because HA, a molecule that occurs naturally in the skin, binds to water to plump up your skin and give it that dewy, glowy effect. 

What is hyaluronic acid?

“Hyaluronic acid is a sugar molecule that occurs naturally in the skin, [and] it helps to bind water to collagen, trapping it in the skin, so that skin can appear plumper, dewier, and more hydrated,” explains board-certified dermatologist Tsippora Shainhouse, M.D.

Basically, hyaluronic acid increases hydration in the skin, which can keep your skin looking fresh, full, and bouncy. “The collagen in our dermis forms the structure of the skin,” Dr. Shainhouse says. “Natural hyaluronic acid is bound to collagen on one side and links to water molecules on the other, giving skin its plumpness.”

Why is hyaluronic acid so important?

As we age, we lose collagen and hyaluronic acid naturally, so the skin becomes dehydrated more easily. Also, harsh weather, harsh skin-care products, and underlying skin conditions can cause tiny breaks in the protective skin barrier, allowing water to escape. That’s why creating a consistent beauty skin routine with moisturizing products can be extra beneficial.

“Hydrating skin-care ingredients including hyaluronic acid, glycerin, colloidal oatmeal, urea, propylene glycol, and sorbitol all act as humectants that attract water to the skin in an effort to hydrate it,” Dr. Shainhouse says. 

Dr Shainhouse

These ingredients are widely used in products such as moisturizers, eye creams, and serums says cosmetic chemist Sandra Bontempo. By using this product for example, like the Shaunna K’s Serum, she says you’ll firm the skin around the eye area, increase moisture to get rid of puffiness and soften fine lines on the rest of the face. “Hyaluronic acid penetrates easily, which is why it works so well when applied topically,” she says. “Our skin is the largest organ in the body and absorbs up to 60 percent of nutrients we apply to it.”

Who should use hyaluronic acid?

Hyaluronic acid is great for all skin types, says Dr. Shainhouse. In general, “[the ingredient] is nonirritating and does not trigger acne, rosacea, or allergic skin reactions,” she says. There is, however, a small chance of any adverse side effects.

Those with dry and/or more mature skin will benefit the most from using hyaluronic acid, says Bontempo. “As we age, our bodies produce less of it, so replacing hyaluronic acid topically will make the most impact on those of us who are middle-aged and older,” she explains.

Hyaluronic acid has the word “acid” in its name, but there’s no reason for sensitive skin types to tread lightly — it’s safe for everyone. “There are no known side effects of utilizing hyaluronic acid, as again, it’s produced in our bodies,” says Bontempo. “Definitely talk to your doctor if you do experience side effects from a product that contains it — it could be due to another active or inactive ingredient.”

Shaunna K has a custom private label of a serum with hyaluronic available in your apothecary. Learn more about Shaunna K’s Serum by clicking the product link below!

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