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What Is Hyaluronic Acid?

What Is Hyaluronic Acid?

Most women have a carefully thought out skin care regimen these days, including cleanser, toner, serums, moisturizers, and more. Chances are, you have at least one product that contains hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a very common ingredient in skin care products these days (including Formula V For Me!), but do you even know what it is and what it's used for? Keep reading so we can answer the question, "What is hyaluronic acid?".

What is hyaluronic acid?

Hyaluronic acid (also known as HA or hyaluronan) is a naturally-occurring sugar that is found in human skin, eyes, and connective tissues. The main purpose of hyaluronan is to retain water. This moisture retention assists in keeping your skin looking well-moisturized, smooth, and plump. It also has healing effects when applied topically to open wounds, and is key in keeping joints lubricated and working smoothly. There are also additional benefits which we will discuss below.

How is this for a mind-blowing fact?! Hyaluronic acid holds a thousand times its weight in water! No wonder its presence in our skin helps it look so much better! Hyaluronic acid not only helps to plump the skin, but it also helps the water that is present in our skin to not evaporate. Water literally binds itself to the acid molecules, making sure it stays where it is needed. Having the proper moisture in the skin helps it to look smoother, as well as brighter, leading to a more youthful appearance. And that’s kind of the goal, right?!

About half of the body's naturally-produced HA is actually found in the skin. It is the largest organ after all! Like many other nutrients and proteins, the amount we naturally produce reduces as we age. Environmental factors such as pollution, sun exposure, and tobacco smoke also affect the amount of hyaluronan that is naturally produced by our bodies. Ingestible hyaluronic acid supplements can be taken to increase the amount of HA that is available throughout your body, but this does pose some risks that we will outline below. Hyaluronic acid is also available in countless skincare products (without any risks), and can also be injected into certain areas or joints that really need a boost.

What are the benefits of hyaluronic acid?

The main benefit that many women seek, as you might imagine, is to aid in the anti-aging process. The plumping effect that hyaluronic acid gives is great for fine lines and wrinkles. It can also help with redness and dermatitis. Just like a plump, juicy grape drying up and turning into a wrinkled raisin, our skin wants to dry out and wrinkle up when it is lacking moisture. Having hyaluronic acid readily available in our skin helps to slow and even reverse this process. Obviously topical application in skincare products is the easiest way of adding HA to your skin, but taking a hyaluronan supplement on a regular basis and eating a well-balanced diet can do wonders, as well. 

In addition to anti-aging, topically applying hyaluronic acid to open wounds can help to speed up the healing process. It does this by regulating levels of inflammation in the wounded area, and then telling the body to build more blood vessels to increase blood flow. HA has also been shown to reduce the size of wounds it has been applied to, as well as decreasing the amount of pain during the healing process. 

There are also helpful antibacterial properties to HA, which lowers the risk of infections in cuts and open wounds. Faster-healing mouth sores and the reversal of gum disease have also been attributed to topical use of hyaluronic acid. Using a topical HA ointment after mouth surgery has also been shown to reduce the occurrence of ulcers, a common surgery side effect.

As mentioned above, HA is also found naturally in your body’s joints. It helps keep the spaces between the bones well-lubricated and thus keeps the joints working properly. Who wants grinding joints?! Yikes! Supplements work well for people with osteoarthritis pain, especially in the knees. As I mentioned before, these supplements do come with a certain risk, though, which we will discuss more in just a moment.

Hyaluronic acid can also be injected into joints that need a little boost. These injections do not always work, though, and they also carry their own set of risks that we will touch on below.

Are there any cons to using hyaluronic acid?

When using hyaluronic acid topically for skin care and wound care, there are no risks since our bodies naturally produce it and the amount used in the topical products are so small. Even if you have multiple products that contain hyaluronic acid, you will not be adding enough to your skin to over-inflate the amount available in your body.

This unfortunately isn’t the case where taking ingestible supplements is concerned. Some studies have shown that some cancer cells can actually grow at a faster rate when a person is taking an ingestible hyaluronic acid supplement. As with other supplements, you are ingesting a very large, concentrated dose. While there are some great benefits from taking a hyaluronic acid supplement, this is a pretty major risk to take. If you currently have cancer, or have a family history of cancer, you should speak to your doctor before taking any ingestible supplements, but particularly hyaluronan supplements.

HA injections do also pose risks, however the associated risks are typically more from the fact that you are getting an injection in the first place, rather than from the hyaluronic acid itself. Hyaluronan injections alone do not have a great track record of success, but when you pair a hyaluronic acid injection with an HA supplement, there have been studies that showed lessened joint pain. As with anything else, just make sure that you discuss all of your options with your physician and see if the benefits outweigh the risks! 

What about Formula V For Me?

Our Formula V For Me Daily Care & Lifting Cream utilizes HA for its amazing plumping capabilities. The cream is applied topically at home after your shower, so there are absolutely zero risks. When you apply our cream to your outer vaginal area, you are supplying this often under-treated area with the amazing moisturizing effects of hyaluronic acid, among other beneficial, all-natural ingredients. These carefully-selected ingredients bring more moisture to the surface, giving you a more smooth and fuller-looking appearance. If you are looking for some added confidence in your most-intimate area, order a bottle of our Formula V Daily Care & Lifting Cream today!

Bonus Skin Care Tips

We have learned that hyaluronic acid can both help prevent skin from aging, as well as helping to reverse the effects once they’ve set in. Let’s now look at some additional skin care tips. First and foremost, drink plenty of water! You should drink half your body weight in ounces of water every day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, you should be drinking at least 75 ounces of water each day. As you read above, water is very important where your skin is concerned. It helps your skin look more supple, and helps your complexion to stay clear.

Another important tip for younger looking skin is to eat healthy foods. Seems simple, right? The old saying, “You are what you eat,” isn’t completely wrong. If you eat highly processed, sugar-filled, fatty foods, your skin will look like it. Eating a diet high in antioxidants, protein, and Vitamin C not only helps to prevent bad skin, but has been shown to clear it up. This kind of diet would include various berries, citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables like spinach, lean proteins like chicken and eggs, and some nuts like Brazil nuts and almonds. You won’t only clear up your skin, but you can heal other things that ail your body, as well!

One important tip for healthy skin that many people are not good about doing is to simply wash your face every night before bed. Men and women both should wash their face at night so that your pillow doesn’t force all the dirt and oil from your day’s activities to get pushed further into your pores, then basically suffocated by your pillow while you lie in one position for an extended period. Using a good cleanser, toner, and nighttime moisturizer before bed can do amazing things in preventing fine lines and wrinkles! If you workout, you should also always wash your face after you get your sweat on. Even if you just keep a pouch of facial cleansing wipes in your gym bag, cleaning all the sweat off your face before it gets time to set in will do wonders!

The last tip I will leave you with, you should already know. Wear sunscreen every day! No matter the season, no matter the weather, always apply an SPF before you go outside. So many makeup products and moisturizers contain at least some SPF nowadays, so there’s really no excuse. If you don’t wear makeup, you can choose a daytime moisturizer that has it, or apply a sunscreen. The sun does a lot of damage that it just sometimes takes years to notice. But take it from us, prevention is much easier than correction!



References:
Healthline 
Harper’s Bazaar
Byrdie

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