The Scoop on Hyaluronic Acid and How to Use it in Your Skincare Routine

In 2019, Hyaluronic Acid (HA) became one of the buzziest ingredients in the beauty industry. HA is a humectant – a substance used to reduce loss of moisture in the skin. So, if your fall #skingoals include staying as plump and glow-y as you were this summer, what better ingredient is there to add into your routine?

Naturally, loss of moisture in the skin leads to dryness and slighter elasticity. Eventually, fine lines and wrinkles settle comfortably on the face and sagging skin starts to droop when there’s no moisture to be found.

Though adding a therapeutic dose of HA into to your skincare routine can help reverse these effects and produce a healthier complexion. Essentially, HA acts like a sponge for moisture, (a single gram can hold up to six litres of water), and helps your cells retain as much as possible. Using just a few drops gently pumps an intense amount of hydration into the skin.

Read on to learn more about HA and what a healing, therapeutic dose is with advice from Andrea Dinnick, the founder of the luxury Canadian green beauty brand, Desavery.

Founder of Desavery, Andrea Dinnick

What’s a therapeutic dose of Hyaluronic Acid?

A: My beauty philosophy is to use a few really good ingredients with concentrations that will be effective. So that’s what I mean when I say ‘therapeutic doses’. It’s not so different to say, supplements. If we need Vitamin D in the winter, then a multivitamin with only 50mg of Vitamin D is not going to do very much. There isn’t a better humectant out there than HA. 

How should a product containing Hyaluronic Acid be sourced and produced?

A: Our Hyaluronic Acid is made by processing organic and fermented plant material. We source it from Europe (specifically Czechoslovakia) where there are very strict regulations. Much of the cosmetic industry sources their Hyaluronic Acid from the combs of roosters and the process and breeding of these roosters with super huge combs is not a pretty story. Having products that are plant-based and free from synthetic chemicals is very important to me. I want to feel great about putting a product on my face that’s clean, healthy and comes from a good place!

There’s a lot of serums and moisturizers containing Hyaluronic Acid on the market that have a long list of ingredients. How effective is HA when it’s combined with a laundry list of other things?

A: I understand that for many mass market beauty products, it’s a strategy to include a long list of ingredients that often comes down to cost or convincing consumers that a complicated formula is somehow better. However, we are learning more about how skin can become overly sensitive and reactive when it’s inundated with different compounds. Our skin’s surface is an amazing ecosystem.

What can different molecular weights of Hyaluronic Acid do for the skin?

A: There are different molecular weights of Hyaluronic Acid and a lower weight will sink deeper into the skin while a heavier weight won’t penetrate as deeply.  Instinctively, one would think the compound that sinks more deeply is better but this is not the case with HA if it’s a plumped, smooth look you are after. Because the product binds to water and acts like a sponge by holding onto that water, you actually want to have this activity occur quite close to the surface. That’s where the available moisture can be found on your skin and it’s where there will be the most visible effect. Additionally, one of the key ways that HA works is that it holds onto moisture and prevents it from evaporating. All of this happens close to the surface of your skin, therefore a higher molecular weight of HA is ideal.

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