Introduction To Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid, also known as hyaluronan, is a naturally occurring carbohydrate molecule found in the human body. The anionic glycosaminoglycan is distributed throughout the neural, epithelial and connective tissues. ‘
The glycosaminoglycan is non-sulfated and hence creating a unique compound in the human body. Hyaluronic acid is formed in the plasma membrane and not in the Golgi apparatus. It is estimated that an average person weighing around a hundred and fifty pounds would have approximately fifteen grams of hyaluronic acid. A third of that is synthesized and degraded every day.
What Does Hyluronic Acid Do?
The primary function of hyaluronic acid is to lubricate the connective tissues in our skin and joints. A substantial part of the fifteen grams of hyaluronan is in our skin. The compound is also found in our eyes and internal fluids. Most people would have half of the compound in skin and the rest distributed in various parts for different functions.
The lubricating effect of hyaluronic acid can be attributed to its moisturizing ability. In fact, it is this ability to moisturize skin that has made it an increasingly popular ingredient in skincare products.
Properties of Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is now being used in a plethora of skincare products, from creams and lotions to face packs and even treatments for acne and other conditions. Hyaluronan has humectant properties. This enables the compound to hold onto moisture.
It prevents loss of moisture from the skin and instead helps the skin to retain it. The molecule is actually capable of holding water up to a thousand times its weight. The molecule is large enough to be incapable of penetrating the skin. The pores on our skin are too small for the molecule.
Hence, every molecule of the acid remains on the skin, thereby forming a protective cover and helps in the retention of moisture. Hyaluronan is a natural hydrator for humans. Ideally, one would not need hyaluronic acid in any form as the body has enough. However, depletion of the compound has to be countered with timely replenishment. This is where skincare products containing hyaluronan comes in.
Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid can soften the skin. This is again due to its moisturizing impact. Softer skin always looks younger and hence the molecule can effectively combat many signs of aging that are primarily a side effect of dry and malnourished skin.
Of course collagen plays a role too. Ageing causes depletion in levels of collagen in the skin and it is not replenished. There are skincare products that can replenish hyaluronan and some can also replenish collagen. Kids have the highest concentration of hyaluronan on their skin. This explains their soft and supple skin. It is fair to guess that everyone will lose most of their naturally available hyaluronan from the skin by the time they turn sixty and older.
Anti-Aging And Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid can prevent saggy skin. It can retain flexibility or suppleness. It can also make your skin appear more radiant because of the increased moisture retention. Wrinkles can be averted and even cured with regular application of creams or other skincare products rich in hyaluronic acid.
Hyaluronan can lead to firm and well toned skin. It can prevent pigmentation and even cure it. The compound enhances natural complexion and also rejuvenates skin after a day outside in the sun while being exposed to a plethora of pollutants.
Hyaluronic Acid And It’s Protective Benefits
Hyaluronic acid can protect the skin from infections. It repairs damaged skin and facilitates healing. It is anti-inflammatory and has antioxidants. The molecules can fight the various free radicals that cause depletion of collagen and prevent inflammations.
The effects of hyaluronan are not confined to the aesthetic changes but also how your skin feels. Your skin would feel softer, fresher and younger. Not only would your skin be radiant but it would actually be stronger and less vulnerable to various common threats, from ultraviolet rays to general deterioration.
Hyaluronic Acid And Skincare
Hyaluronan is available in various skincare products. You may choose moisturizers or creams, lotions or serums. Whatever product or whichever brand you choose, you should ensure the source of hyaluronan is organic.
You should not choose heavily processed or a synthetic version of the naturally occurring carbohydrate. The hyaluronic acid used in cosmetics cannot be sourced from humans but there are many plants and animals that serve as the natural source of the compound.
What To Look For
You must also ensure that the skincare product you use contains sufficient amounts of hyaluronic acid. Many products may advertise on their label that they contain hyaluronan but the quantity may be insignificant.
You need sufficient concentration, usually a fifth or so of the entire composition in a cream, lotion, moisturizer or serum. Each of these types of skincare products will have specific instructions for application and how you should maintain your skin.
It is best to adhere to these recommendations to get the best results. For instance, some may have to be applied for the entire day while some may need a few minutes to be absorbed by the skin before you can venture out.