Hyaluronic acid is often listed as the active ingredient in facial serums and creams. Naturally found in the body especially in the joints and skin, hyaluronic acid gives skin its youthful plumpness. It acts as a water reservoir for the skin cells to prevent dryness and dehydration. As with other skin components, the hyaluronic acid levels in the skin decline with age, hence, hyaluronic acid serums and creams help slow down the signs of ageing.
Hyaluronic acid in skincare products is made of sodium hyaluronate. There are different types of sodium hyaluronate, each has a different skin penetration ability. When you buy a hyaluronic acid serum or cream, it is crucial to choose the one made with the best hyaluronic acid to renew the appearance of your skin.
Five Different Types of Hyaluronic Acid
The deeper hyaluronic acid goes into the skin, the better the results. There are five different types of hyaluronic acid according to their skin penetration ability as listed below from the best to the ordinary ones:
1. Ultra-Low-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid
Ultra-low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid is made of sodium hyaluronate with an average molecular-weight of less than 6,000 dalton (1 dalton = 0.0000000000000000000000166 gram). By far the best hyaluronic acid found in facial serums and creams, hyaluronic acid ULMW has a much greater skin penetration ability than other types of hyaluronic acid. It is the most effective type of hyaluronic acid to revitalise the skin and restore the youthfulness from within.
If your skin shows prominent signs of ageing, apply Bio-Collagen Serum all over freshly-cleansed face and neck, morning and evening. This powerful anti-ageing serum has been formulated with ultra-low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid and 24-karat gold nanoparticles to rejuvenate skin cells. It also contains resveratrol, ferulic acid and coenzyme Q10 to strengthen skin's defense mechanism and protect skin cells from biological and environmental ageing factors.
“ Facelift in a bottle! Delighted with my purchase. Within minutes my skin feels tighter and looks fresher.” Rachel, UK.
2. Super-Low-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid SLMW has an average molecular-weight of less than 50,000 dalton. It isn't as effective as Hyaluronic Acid ULMW, however it is better than the other three types of hyaluronic acid below.
3. Extra-Low-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid ELMW has an average molecular-weight of 110,000 dalton.
4. Low-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid LMW has an average molecular-weight of 1,000,000 dalton.
5. High-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid
This is the most common type of hyaluronic acid in skincare products. With a molecular-weight of up to 1,500,000 dalton, hyaluronic acid HMW has the least skin penetration ability compared to the other types.
As an anti-ageing scientist who has been formulating skincare products for more than 15 years, I highly recommend to use facial serums and creams made with ultra-low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid for the best anti-ageing results. Hyaluronic acid ULMW is an expensive ingredient but it is worth it.
The Best Alternatives to Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid serums and creams are not the only products that help replenish the skin's hyaluronic acid. Beside hyaluronic acid itself, there are few other ingredients that have been shown to boost the skin's hyaluronic acid levels such as:
Extracted from the plants, saccharide isomerate boosts the skin's hydration levels and provides an instant, yet long-lasting, soothing protection against skin dryness and dehydration. It plumps up the appearance of the skin and smooths out wrinkles. A study showed that it increases the hyaluronic acid synthesis in the skin by up to 66%. Saccharide isomerate is the best alternative to hyaluronic acid for those with sensitive skin.
Saccharide isomerate has a very light texture like water. It deeply hydrates your skin for up to 72 hours without leaving an oily layer on the skin. The award-winning Rose and Cacay Hydrating Cream has been formulated with saccharide isomerate, rose extract and cacay oil to comfort the skin with soothing hydration and gently reduce the signs of ageing. This light yet ultra soothing moisturiser is suitable for all skin types and all year round.
“ This is the perfect moisturizer!!! With a subtle rose smell and light consistency. I have a combination skin and I love the fact that this cream does not give a greasy feeling. My skin absorbs the cream, leaves my face and neck with a pleasant "silky" feeling. Would definitely recommend it to everyone. I have tried many different moisturizers and this is the most nurturing and effective one." Helena.
Extracted from the shell of shellfish, n-acetyl glucosamine has been shown to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and pigmentation spots. Studies showed that n-acetyl glucosamine boosts the production of hyaluronic acid in the skin and gently peels off dead skin cells. It works synergistically with niacinamide to diminish pigmentation spots by reducing the excess production of melanin pigment in the skin. N-acetyl glucosamine is the best alternative to hyaluronic acid for those with pigmentation spots.
If your skin suffers with various signs of ageing and hyperpigmentation, apply Bio-Collagen Ageless Cream on top of your usual serum every morning and evening. This anti-wrinkle cream has been formulated with n-acetyl glucosamine, niacinamide and ultra-low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid to restore the youthfulness of the skin and even out complexion. Infused with 24-karat gold nanoparticles, Bio-Collagen Ageless Cream nourishes and brings oxygen to the skin cells in the deeper layers of the skin.
" When a girl reaches a certain age a little smudge of Henry's magic goes a long way! It slides onto skin as smoothly as silk and leaves your face feeling plumped-up. You'll be amazed with the wrinkle-free results!" Best Night Cream, Natural Health.
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Henry Tianus is a multi-award-winning Anti-Ageing Scientist based in London, UK. Henry Tianus has been listed as The Recognised Institute Practitioner at The Institute of Traditional Herbal Medicine and Aromatherapy (ITHMA), London (UK) since 2005. Henry Tianus's articles have been read by people in more than 100 countries with US, UK amd Canada at the top of the list. Join Henry Tianus eNewsletter to receive the latest health and wellbeing tips.
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Scientific Sources: Low Molecular Weight Hyaluronic Acid: Its Effects on Epidermal Gene Expression & Skin Ageing, International Journal for Applied Science, English Edition, SOFW-Journal, 134, 11-2008.