I’m not deliberately trying to be confusing by referring to the infamous sandwich from Friends (skip to 2.28).
You see, I can’t think of how else to describe this product. It’s not a moisturiser but it definitely helps with moisturising. It isn’t a toner, or a lotion: yet it is called these things sometimes.
The name hyaluronic acid may be familiar to some. Any beauty product that has the word acid in its name would probably cause most people great amounts of worry, never mind conjuring images of plump, youthful skin. The name is very misleading.
Hyaluron, as it is also known, occurs naturally in the human body and holds moisture. A lot of moisture. One gram of hyaluron can hold in 1000ml of water which is a fairly impressive attribute. An attribute that has been tapped into by the beauty industry to create omnipresent moisturising formulas – lipsticks, serums, face washes, and mists are just some examples of where this compound can be found.
I recall watching a certain cosmetic advert some years ago now. It featured the ever-lovely Penelope Cruz spruiking a moisturiser infused with hyaluronic acid which was making splashes left, right and centre. Well, that particular product may have come and been but hyaluron has stayed and thrived. Why there is even a superhyaluronic acid out there.
But back to the matter at hand though, the moistmaker.
My skin has always been normal-combination, never dry. Except for the more recent winters when it has been breaking out . . . from dryness (Canberra, I blame you). Something that took me a long time to figure out because my initial approach was to stop the sebum! Yeah, not good.
I stumbled upon hyaluronic acid lotion last year as I do, rummaging through random little shops selling Japanese skin and hair care. I purchased a bottle without the faintest idea about what it did or how to work it. Fast forward to today and I will save you the trouble.
The lotion isn’t really a moisturiser. So if you’ve been rubbing this into your face, frustrated that it has disappointed you like cheap mascara, please stop. It is more of a primer to help your moisturiser seep in better.
It looks like water, doesn’t have a particular scent (unless perfumed), feels a little sticky and is tricky to apply. But once you’ve got it on, and slap on your regular cream, you’ll find your skin will drink it all up and be softer, smoother and well moisturised. My theory is that it draws moisture from the air and the moisturiser and then helps it bind to the skin.
The effect is noticeable but not in your face noticeable (I can’t stop the puns, please help). I certainly didn’t appreciate the difference until I stopped using the product.
Hyaluron lotion is cheap as chips (<$20) and a little lasts a long time (I use about 5 drops for the whole face). You can pat it onto the skin with clean hands or use a cotton swab to dab it on. Either way, it will soften your skin and prepare it for your regular moisturiser. Its other benefits are fewer wrinkles and lines and reduction in skin discolouration. Incidentally, there are hyaluronic moisturisers out there if you are wondering.
Yes, it is an additional step to your daily routine but if you’re finding you need a little help with your dry skin, or oil-free moisturisers alone aren’t cutting it, give this a go. It is suitable for most skin types and there are versions for sensitive skin too. It can also help with flaky dry skin.
Try it. I don’t think you will be disappointed.
Sasa always has some in different brands and your local Japanese store might have some (I’ve seen a few shops in Chinatown that carry it). My favourites are by Kose and Hada Labo but there are heaps of brands out there.
Do you have trouble with keeping your skin moisturised?
How do you cope?