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Hyaluronic Acid – my current skin saviour..

I don’t know about you but my skin has been suffering from serious dehydration these last few weeks – I feel like I’ve been sucked dry. Yes, I add a few tipples over Christmas but certainly nothing to dry me out this much. I’ve been trying lots of new products for the last couple of months as I’m judging in the Beauty Shortlist Awards 🙂 While it is a real treat and fun to try and discover lots of new brands, in trying to be fair to them all, it’s sometimes not fair on my skin as I’m not giving it the exact thing it needs. This could be a factor, along with of course the cold weather, central heating and not enough internal hydration…(blah blah)

Anyway I was coming home from a teaching day last week reading Stylist magazine when I had an epiphany.. well maybe not an epiphany as I had actually been discussing it with the students that day, I just hadn’t applied it to my own skin. Thank you Stylist for reminding me that my skin needs water as well as oil. It’s no secret I love an oil, they are amazing for all skin types, helping to nourish and balance (you may need to play about to find the best for you)..

However what a dehydrated skin lacks is water, and all skins can become dehydrated.. so maybe I’ve not been giving it enough actual hydration..step in hyaluronic acid – my current skin saviour. After adding it back into my routine since last week, I’ve had a huge improvement in my skin.

I actually started writing this post back in October but it got pushed a bit to the wayside, for no particular reason. Anyway, it’s here now…

Hyaluronic Acid isn’t a new ingredient, it’s been about for years. I remember learning about it back in my Selfridges Beauty Hall days, maybe even my Virgin Vie days – anyone remember them?

Despite the name, hyaluronic acid isn’t actually an acid but a naturally occurring sugar that is found in our bodies, with a high percentage of that being in our skin. It helps retain moisture and keeps skin plump and lovely; unfortunately it’s another one of those that declines with age. Dermal fillers are made from hyaluronic acid – it is injected into the dermis of the skin where it fills and plumps fine lines and wrinkles – on a temporary basis albeit.

I was in a queue the other day and couldn’t but listen to the lady on the phone in front of me – she was telling her friend quite avidly that hyaluronic acid was her friend, and she needed it in her life!!

As well as injecting it, you can take it internally via supplements, but the best way I’ve seen results is to use it topically via your skincare. It can make a big difference to the appearance of your skin. Being the water magnet that it is, hyaluronic acid will draw water to the skin and thus help to moisturise and improve hydration levels.

Dr Pedro Catalá of Twelve Beauty explains “It is highly soluble in water, which is why it helps keep the skin tissues so perfectly moisturised – and it is also a key component in the gaps between skin cells, making it a highly compatible and effective skin-hydrating ingredient.”

There are different sizes of hyaluronic acid available…

”Low molecular weight means particles of a smaller size and therefore a better chance of penetrating skin more deeply – which is when you achieve that filler/anti-wrinkle action,” explains Pedro. “High molecular weight does not penetrate the skin, but instead creates a viscoelastic film that keeps the skin moisturised: this transparent film reduces the amount of water that evaporates from the skin, known as Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL). TEWL, is in my opinion, one of the main causes of premature ageing.”

Pedro uses the largest molecule size in his products “so it doesn’t penetrate but creates a protective film on top of the skin to maintain the skin elastic and moisturised. The more protected the skin is the better it works.” His Ideal Moisture Level Serum is absolutely wonderful as his Hyaluroil Lip Treatment both are amazing for thirsty skin in this cold weather.

How do you know which one is what?? Pedro explains..

‘Sodium hyaluronate:’ “i.e. HA converted into a salt. It usually refers to the big molecule (high molecular weight), which is better for creating a film that sits on top of the skin to prevent Trans-Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL).”

‘Hyaluronic acid:’ “This usually refers to the small molecule (low molecular weight), which penetrates more deeply.”

‘Hydrolysed hyaluronic acid’: “This normally refers to a low molecular weight of HA, as the big original molecules have been ‘broken’ into small pieces to enhance skin penetration.”

Thank you so much to Pedro for his amazing pearls of wisdom – I asked him for some quotes as he KNOWS about all things skincare and he very kindly gave me these (originally from a Get The Gloss piece. I love Get The Gloss, top of my reading list for sure)

As well as Twelve Beauty, I also love BYBI’s Mega Mist – this toner has gone back to being on stand by in my house. I use it a spritz to refresh skin and add instant hydration throughout the day and also after cleansing. Sometimes I spritz, other times I’ll use it on a cotton pad to remove the last traces of eye make-up etc, it adds to my skin for sure.

Evolve Organic Beauty have a very popular Hyaluronic Serum which I’ve used and really liked, their Daily Defence Moisture Mist is lovely too.

The product I’ve been using this last week to really bump up the hydration is Holos’ This Is More Facial and Eye Serum – it’s definitely hydrating. My skin feels and looks better – those dehydration lines have softened..

Do you use hyaluronic acid? What are favourite products with it in?