Hyaluronic Acid

Written by Blaire Chandler-Wilcox
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Hyaluronic acid, also referred to in dermatology as HA, is a naturally occurring component of the human body. One of its myriad duties is to act as the very foundation of human joint lubrication fluid. It is also found in high quantities in youthful skin.

As it pertains to healthy, youthful looking skin, HA is responsible for holding collagen and elastin together, which provides a framework, if you will, for the skin. It creates volume and structure. As the body ages, amounts of HA decline. Smoking is one of naturally-occurring HA's biggest enemies. As a result of HA loss, skin wrinkles, sags, and loses its youthful firmness and suppleness.

The Key to the Fountain of Youth

Hyaluronic acid has been approved for use by the FDA as a "skin filler." It is currently one of the major treasures of the dermatological industry. In fact, the ABC news program 20/20 referred to hyaluronic acid as "the key to the fountain of youth." Although it's considered most effective when injected directly into the skin, even topical treatments are said to have noticeable results on skin appearance.

Able to hold water up to 1,000 times its weight, HA has unmatched hydrating properties. In the complexion, higher HA counts plump up the skin. It is particularly effective in the areas most vulnerable to tissue loss, such as around the mouth and cheeks. Hyaluronic acid can be found in three percent concentrations in both prescription and over the counter treatments. Look for compounds that contain vitamin C, which helps HA permeate the skin.

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