Hyaluronic acid, or HA, is a well-loved ingredient in the beauty world for two reasons: it is excellent both as a moisturiser and as a filler.
So, what’s the science?
HA forms an important part of the structure of our cells. It naturally occurs almost everywhere in the body, but mostly in our skin where it provides structural support and hydration. The average human has around 15 grams of HA, and one-third of it is destroyed and renewed every day.
So you guessed it, HA is what gives skin that plump, youthful look – hence its presence in many of today’s creams, serums, fillers and supplements.
Young skin is of course rich in HA, but as we get older our bodies produce less and less of it. The most significant drop occurs after the age of 40 and with it, both elasticity and moisture are lost.
HA’s popularity in products is thanks to its extraordinary capacity to hold in moisture - up to 1,000 times its weight. So while its molecules are too large for our skin to absorb, its ability to lock in moisture means it forms a protective barrier. This is how it helps give skin a youthful appearance.
Used in injectable fillers
HA is the primary ingredient in Juvederm fillers which are injected directly into wrinkled or sagging areas for a tightening, lifting and smoothing effect. It has the same molecular structure as the HA that occurs naturally in the body so is completely safe, readily integrated and after time naturally reabsorbed.
HA fillers such as Juvederm may be used in almost every part of the face and are the main ingredients of our popular Facial Reshaping treatment. Read Dr Harris' article on Facial Reshaping and the holistic approach here in Aesthetic Magazine and also our earlier Blog post, Fresh and Natural: Facial Reshaping.
Used properly, HA fillers can, either alone or in combination with other treatments, look completely natural with results lasting on average for 9-12 months.