The Hyaluronic Acid is a bit like Julia Roberts – a seasoned vet loved by all, highly reliable, always up to awards, but rarely at the center of a viral buzzy internet moment. The acid has been in just about every moisturizing product around for years, but recently, brands have been trotting out the show pony ingredient and putting it front and center to make us remember just how great it is for every skin type. Want to know more about the superstar hydrators? We have the answer.
Hyaluronic acid, despite its name sounding scary, is actually a natural substance found in our bodies. This is why our skin, whether it be oily, dry or mature, responds well to artificially introducing it. It is found in nearly every cell of the skin and acts as a cushion to keep moisture below the surface. It is important to add it as soon as possible because our stocks of this stuff diminish with age.
The best way to increase your hyaluronic acid levels is to ingest it. Consume it. Good sources of HA include leafy greens such as spinach and kale and starchy root vegetables, and like bone broths. If you really want to go the extra mile, there are some other sources like fish eyeballs and a rooster comb.
Hyaluronic acid is a moisturizing agent that can hold 1,000 times its weight in water. It acts like a sponge that is soaked in water and drips moisture to the skin throughout the day. Lines look smoother and dry patches disappear. But because it’s a large molecule, it won’t penetrate to the deepest layers, so that’s where hyaluronic acid fillers, which are made of synthesized HA derived from sodium hyaluronate, come in.
Are you ready to show it some love? Here are the top ways to boost your HA with these new products, including lip balms, masks, and serums.
- This light-as air serum contains 75% hyaluronic acids, which means you get serious hydration. It can be used morning and night after cleansing or exfoliating. Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Serum, $65, available at Sephora.
- This treatment is expensive, but worth it. This treatment increases firmness and plumpness by feeding collagen (basically, skin’s version of scaffolding). The oil-free formula is somewhere between a serum or a cream. It’s suitable for both combination and oily skin types and can be used under makeup. Perricone MD Hyalo Plasma Hyaluronic Acid Intensive Moisturizer, $135, available at Sephora.
- This rubber modeling mask will help you get in the DIY spirit. Mix the activating powder and gel in a bowl. Then, use the spatula to apply the gel on your skin. The gel will be easier to peel off if you apply it uniformly. Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Hyaluronic Marine Hydrating Modeling Mask, $46, available at Ulta.
- It is natural that hyaluronic acids would have the same effect on lips and skin as on the skin. The lip serum that contains hyaluronic fat enhancers and filling spheres has two chambers. One for morning and one for evening. You’ll feel the benefits of a lipstick primer and plumper in the morning. There’s some tingling but nothing like the stinging past versions. Dr. Brandt Needles No More 3-D LIP PLUMPfix, $39, available at Sephora.
- This serum contains both sodium hyaluronate and hydrolyzed (broken down hyaluronic acids) to overcome the large HA molecules. This serum targets surface hydration with the addition of ceramides (broken-down hyaluronic acid) and sodium hyaluronate (hyaluronic acid in salt form). PCA Skin Hyaluronic Acid Boosting Serum, $115, available in April at PCA Skin.
- In your 20s, the skin’s production begins to decline, but it rapidly declines after 40. It is therefore important to supplement it as soon as possible. This booster contains proteins and botanical ingredients, like licorice root and purple rice, that support the skin’s natural HA levels, along with both full and fragmented molecules to target multiple layers of skin. SkinCeuticals H.A. Intensifier, $98, available at DermStore.
- This formula is simple and affordable. There are some things that make this formula unique, such as the addition of vitamin B5 to plumpen and increase surface hydration. Also, the varying molecular masses allow for greater absorption so the products can penetrate deeper into your skin than just sitting on top. Oh, and the price. The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, $6.80, available at Amazon.