When it comes to skin care, there are certain ingredients that seem to get all the buzz. Retinol, alpha hydroxy acid, and antioxidants like Vitamins A, C and E are all touted as powerful allies in the fight against premature aging, and trendy ingredients like green tea, collagen, and peptides get plenty of attention in beauty magazines. However, if you’ve got dry or mature skin, there’s a lesser known but just as effective ingredient that you should get to know a little better.
Despite its name, hyaluronic acid isn’t an exfoliating ingredient like alpha hydroxy acid. Instead, it’s actually a glycosaminoglycan, or a long, unbranched polysaccharide that makes up connective tissue in the human body. In fact, hyaluronic acid is naturally found in spots like articular cartilage in the joints and the eyeballs where its viscous texture provides lubrication and cellular support.
It also occurs naturally in our skin, where it assists with tissue repair and hydration. That’s why it’s no surprise that hyaluronic acid is used in a variety of skin care products, including injectable wrinkles fillers. If you’re not ready for a wrinkle filler injection, though, this powerhouse ingredient can also be used topically to boost moisture in the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
In fact, hyaluronic acid is a particularly effective ingredient in skin care products for dry or mature skin because it can actually hold up to 1000 times its own weight in water to provide intense hydration. It also forms an air-permeable barrier that allows it to draw moisture from the surrounding air into the skin and lock it in place. Hyaluronic acid can also help improve elasticity, so your skin doesn’t only receive effective hydration but has a firmer, more youthful appearance as well. It can also adjust its moisture absorption rate based on environmental factors like climate, season and humidity, so your skin always gets just the right amount of hydration.
If you have severely dehydrated or mature skin, an intense face serum with hyaluronic acid like the gloTherapeutics Advanced B5 Hydration is your best bet. In addition to hyaluronic acid, the formula contains Vitamin B5 to really boost its hydration power, protect your skin from environmental stresses, and promote cell renewal. You can use the serum on its own or before your favorite moisturizer to really pump moisture into your skin.
For a little boost of moisture after cleansing your skin, an alcohol-free toner like Pevonia’s Hydrating Lotion delivers hyaluronic acid to help hydrate and protect your skin. The toner also contains Vitamin E and licorice to help revive and soothe your complexion. Apply it to freshly cleansed skin with a cotton pad morning and night, and follow with your usual serum and moisturizer for hydrated, younger looking skin.
If you’re battling dry, wrinkled skin around your eyes, Bioelements’ Sleepwear for Eyes is right up your alley. Its moisture-rich formula contains hyaluronic acid fillers that work topically on the skin to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The eye cream also contains biopeptides to help firm sagginess and topical calcium to help fortify the delicate skin. Apply a small amount of the cream nightly by patting it gently into the entire eye area. Use your ring finger for application – it’s your weakest finger so you won’t wind up pulling or tugging on the fragile skin.