Hyaluronic acid occurs naturally in our bodies. It’s a high molecular weight polysaccharide that plays a role in the metabolism of the dermis. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is most abundant in the skin but can also be found in the skeletal tissues, heart valves, lungs, aorta, and tissues in the clitoris. Hyaluronic acid’s superpower is to retain moisture and hydrate the skin.
HA has become a top ingredient in skincare, but the use of HA goes beyond serums and moisturizers. As hyaluronic acid is having its time to shine, there are a lot of questions regarding HA and exactly what it does. We answer your top 5 questions about hyaluronic acid.
1. Why is hyaluronic acid good for your skin?
Hyaluronic acid is best known for its skin-related benefits. Its ability to trap moisture helps the skin appear plumper, dewier, and more hydrated. Skin types on the dryer side will benefit the most, but every skin type can use it. And unlike other serums that might be strictly for nighttime use, HA can be used morning and night so you will be able to reap the benefits all day long.
What makes HA so great is that it can hold almost 1000 times its weight in water, allowing it to moisturize the skin and lock in that moisture. When it comes to skincare, the lower the molecular weight, the more it can penetrate. When you use it topically, it provides hydrating benefits to the skin and gives the appearance of a more radiant, youthful look.
2. Why is HA important?
There are two known types of aging: intrinsic aging — the unpreventable process where the body goes through dramatic changes, most notably, the body decreases its hormone production. The second type of aging is extrinsic aging, which is the result of being exposed to external factors like UV light and pollution.
We recognized that the deficiency in estrogens results in collagen degradation, dryness, loss of elasticity, epidermal atrophy, and wrinkling of the skin. This is, unfortunately, a normal part of aging, and though we cannot escape the inevitable, we can take measures to help — like taking hyaluronic acid supplements. Studies have shown that ingesting hyaluronic acid improves skin hydration and elasticity and helps to reduce wrinkles.
3. Is it okay to use HA every day?
The short answer. Yes. Using hyaluronic acid every day is safe and beneficial. Don’t let the ‘acid’ part of the name scare you. Topical HA will not strip or exfoliate your skin like other types of acids found in skincare. Hyaluronic acid supplements are also safe and effective to take every day and it is recommended to do so to ensure you are receiving all the benefits of HA.
4. What else can hyaluronic acid do?
HA is a powerful skincare ingredient, but your joints can benefit too. Naturally, hyaluronic acid can be found in the joint fluid and act as a lubricant and shock absorber to help the joints to move smoothly. In adults who suffer from osteoarthritis, HA may be effective due to the many methods of action it deploys, including lubrication, anti-inflammatory, and chondroprotective effects.
HA can also improve vaginal dryness and vulvar discomfort. Intimate moisturizers and personal lubricants act like the serums and moisturizers you use on your face. Using a personal lubricant with HA helps to supplement the body’s natural lubrication and supports long-term vaginal health by providing relief from pain, burning, and itching. Intimate skin moisturizers can be used in conjunction with personal lubricants and help hydrate the external skin.
5. Does hyaluronic acid have any side effects?
Overall, it is safe to use and there are no known side effects to taking HA topically or orally.