Hyaluronic Acid (Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, HA) has many benefits and is one of the most interesting ingredients in skin care, specifically. Naturally found in the body, hyaluronic acid secures moisture and creates fullness—youthful skin naturally abounds with hyaluronic acid. In skin care, you can find hyaluronic acid creams, serums, injectables (aka: Restylane), and hyaluronic acid supplements.
IS HYALURONIC ACID NATURAL?
Hyaluronic acid is a natural glycosaminoglycan (polysaccharides that are an important component of connective tissue) and can be derived from multiple resources, foods, supplements and HA powders. HA is distributed widely throughout connective, neural, and epithelial tissue. It is of the chief components of the extra-cellular matrix (the tissue that provides structural support to cells). In short, hyaluronic acid supports many important areas of the body, with notable benefit to joints and skin.
HYALURONIC ACID IN THE BODY
Interestingly, the average human has approximately 15 grams of hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid) in the body, one-third of which is "turned over" (degraded and synthesized) every day.
FUNCTIONS OF HYALURONIC ACID
Hyaluronic acid benefits soft tissue function, such as joint support, and combatting osteoarthritis. HA is responsible, in part, for the resilience of cartilage and its ability to resist compression. As one of the chief components of the extra-cellular matrix, Hyaluronan is an important component of articular cartilage1, where it is present as a coat around each cell (chondrocyte).
Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid and Skin
WHY HYALURONIC ACID IS IMPORTANT FOR THE SKIN
As we age, skin moisture can drop significantly, which makes the skin lose elasticity and expose the signs of aging on the skin. Hyaluronic acid plays a critical role in skin health with its unique ability to hold in moisture (1000 ml of water per gram of hyaluronic acid).
Hyaluronic acid is also a “smart nutrient” as it can adjust its moisture absorption rate based on the humidity—relative to the season and the climate.
HYALURONIC ACID RESEARCH
Researchers have found Hyaluronic Acid supplementation to be directly correlated to measured increases in skin moisture. Microscopic skin surface analysis shows increased skin smoothness, and amelioration of wrinkles. 2
Types of Hyaluronic Acid Products
AS A TOPICAL SKIN CREAM OR SKIN SERUM
Unlike collagen, Hyaluronic Acid is able to penetrate the skin’s upper layers to improve and benefit the skin when applied topically. Hyaluronic acid is a major component of skin, where it benefits tissue repair and protection. When applied in an HA cream or serum, hyaluronic acid forms an air permeable layer and penetrates into the dermis, thus boosting the elasticity and hydration of the skin. The protective barrier on the skin locks in moisture, which gives the skin a youthful appearance.
Caution Regarding Hyaluronic Acid Serums and Creams
In choosing an HA serum or cream, there are a couple attributes to look for:
- • Hyaluronic Acid from a vegan source is preferred.
- • Avoid HA serums that also contain alcohol, parabens, sulfates, or other ingredients that are harmful to the skin.
More often than not, a “pure hyaluronic acid” serum will contain alcohol or preservatives that counteract the benefits of hyaluronic acid as a topical. Avoid these products.
Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid and UVB Sun Protection
One of the most skin damaging elements are UVB rays from the sun. Hyaluronic acid benefits the skin as it protects the skin from UVB rays (and the scavenging reactive oxygen species they generate), which can cause sunspots.
HYALURONIC ACID AS A SUPPLEMENT
Hyaluronic acid is extremely beneficial as an oral supplement as it plays a critical role in the production of collagen, the most abundant protein in the body. Collagen is critical to the skin because it supports skin structure. As body collagen declines, the appearance of wrinkles and discoloration become more visible. Maximizing collagen levels will keep skin supple. Hyaluronic acid keeps collagen synthesis up, as well as retaining skin moisture, contributing to the anti-aging benefits to the skin. Higher levels of collagen and hyaluronic acid are related to skin that is more supple and resistant to wrinkles and fine lines.
Effectiveness of an oral Hyaluronic Acid supplementation has been somewhat controversial. There have been studies2,3 showing hyaluronic acid to be extremely effective with oral supplementation. Theories abound whether Hyaluronic Acid is actually directly affecting the outcome, or if it is an indirect effect due to higher blood levels—prompting the body to respond by generating its own supply of hyaluronic acid (proven due to the supplementation).
Hyaluronic acid is of great benefit when applied topically and taken as an oral supplement.
Where Can I Get Hyaluronic Acid?
As a supplement:
Elavonne's Amino Collagen C with Hyaluronic Acid provides 50mg of pure, vegan sourced Hyaluronic Acid plus 5,000 mg of fish peptide collagen protein. This powerful duo promotes skin fullness and lessens the appearance of wrinkles and skin discoloration. 93% of users reported improved hair, nails, and skin with continued use.
As a topical:
Élavonne offers an Organic skin care line that provides the maximum in anti-aging benefits of Hyaluronic Acid without harmful ingredients. Alcohol free, paraben free, organic, and made in the USA.