The Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid in Skincare
Lets start with...what is it exactly?
Hyaluronic acid is a key substance that is naturally produced by our body, which has a unique ability to bind and retain water molecules.
It is most abundantly found in our skin, but also importantly exists in other parts of our body like in our body fluids, joints and eyes.
It is a type of polysaccharide (a chain of carbohydrate molecules) that in the skin, is a part of the system which is responsible for maintaining its structural proteins, like collagen and elastin, is an important part of the wounds healing process, and is important to the skin pulling in and retaining water from the body and environment.
So what does it do when applied to the skin with skincare?
As we age, our body has a harder time producing it's own hyaluronic acid. In the skin that leads to loss of elasticity, and dehydration. Hyaluronic acid when applied in a product will help pull moisture from the air, and pull it into your skin. It will also help in wound healing processes, which makes it so helpful for after microneedling and chemical peels.
But watch out, not all hyaluronic acid is created equal
Early hyaluronic acid serums were mostly large molecules with high weights. Because of their size and weight, they tended to sit on top of the skin rather than penetrate in. This just means that they pull water into the outermost layers of the skin (which helps give a plumped and dewy appearance).
But soon it was found that hyaluronic acid can be found at different size and weighted molecules, and that the smaller molecules would penetrate the hyaluronic deeper into the skin which sounded at the time like that meant it would be a more effective product. This created a lot of low molecular weight, and mixed weight H.A. products.
But according to recent studies, the low weight H.A. serums have been found to cause inflammation in the skin, which leads to irritation and accelerated aging, rather than the healing effects we found in the high weight H.A..
So what kind of hyaluronic acid should I use then?
If a product says "low weight" molecular hyaluronic acid, than it would be best to avoid it.
I recommend high weight, large molecule based hyaluronic acid serums or mixed weights with large and medium weight sized molecule products. That is what is found in many of our Meta Skincare products, for plumped looking, soothed and hydrated skin.