A natural way to improve your skin at the source: HYDROXIC ACIDS
Meet Agustina Franchi, an accountant by profession, who is converting her passion for natural things and skin care in her new venture. This first article is born from her desire to share the knowledge she has been acquiring while looking for ingredients and developing her products. Useful information when you have to decide what products you will use on your skin. In the following words she tells us what are hydroxides acids, what these acids achieve and which one you have to use …
To have healthy, luminous skin it needs to be truly clean and exfoliated. In turn, for our skin to be firm and flexible we have to care for the regeneration of tissues. Hydroxic acids act over the surface and also at the source of the skin, performing these two functions.
The skin is replaced in a two-stage process, each lasting 14 days. As the years pass this process slows down. Factors like sun damage, stress, excessive dryness or oiliness and other external agents also slow it down even more.
The result: there are more and more dead cells in the upper layer of skin accumulating and clogging.
These acids dissolve the binding bridges between the dead cells and release them from the surface. This accelerates the normal process of regeneration of basal cells in the deepest layer of the skin and thus stimulates the synthesis of collagen.
Collagen is the protein present in 80% of skin that unites the tissues, it’s what keeps skin firm and smooth, but it cannot be added to skin, it doesn’t penetrate it so we have to work at regeneration and protection.
Warning: many cosmetics claim to contain collagen but the reality is that upon application it only moisturizes and the real need of the skin remains.
WHAT THESE ACIDS ACHIEVE?
By acting on the corneal layer (superficial layer) they remove the opaque, dry or brittle appearance of the skin making it luminous and uniform. It also minimizes wrinkles because while it cleans the dead cells this layer becomes thinner. This also makes the skin more permeable so that the other active ingredients in the skin care make it stay hydrated. By acting intermediately and deeper, these thicken the skin by cell regeneration giving it greater firmness and turgor.
WHAT ACIDS I SHOULD USE?
Two types exists:
- ALPHA HYDROXY ACIDS (AHA)
- BETA HYDROXY ACIDS (BHA)
ALPHA HYDROXY ACIDS
The ALPHA ACIDS are water soluble. Some of these include glycolic acid, lactic acid, mandelico, citric, malic acid, among others. All are vegetable origin except lactic acid which is of animal origin.
From of all these GLYCOLIC ACID is the one I prefer. This is the one that achieves the highest level of depth because it has the smallest particles which contribute best to the synthesis of collagen. It also manages to hydrate from the inside out because it retains water.
On the other hand MANDELIC ACID doesn’t penetrate as deeply, what makes it work for sensitive skin and rosacea is that it’s a good ally for reducing spots because it inhibits the production of melanin. Be careful though, it can also dry out the skin.
BETA HYDROXY ACIDS
BETA ACIDS (BHA), like Salicylic Acid, are soluble in oil. This allows it to penetrate the pores of your skin and clean it which ordinary cleansers will not do. With skin that’s mixed or with acne, the use of this acid is essential in reducing pores, eliminating black heads and shine. As for the production of collagen, they fulfill a different action which is totally complementary to ALPHA (AHA).
Hope the information about acids has been useful. In the next article I will be talking about how to choose an acid, which products available in the market you can use and when, ¡Thanks! Feel free to leave your comments.
Words: Agustina Franchi. Photography: Biru Capurro.
References and Bibliography:
- HUMAN ANATOMY TREATY L. Testut IV Tomo.
- Bloom & Fawcett: Histology Treaty. McGraw-Hill Interamericana.
- Jimeno, Antonio; Ballesteros, Manuel; Ugedo, Luis. Biology. Fuenlabrada: Santillana, 1997. ISBN 978-84-294-8385-7
- Biological Chemical Institute. Consultation May 13, 2017.
- Bloom-Fawcett. Histology Treaty. McGraw-Hill Interamericana