Can using this friendly acid in conjunction with vitamin C actually give you skin like Jhené Aiko?

Reveal a new layer of beautiful skin
Reveal a new layer of beautiful skin

Ever since I started my journey to achieve skin like Jhené Aiko, my cosmetics stand has been fully stocked with products consisting of ingredients I somewhat recognise from that time (looong ago) I took university chemistry. 

Yes, my approach to skincare has become very academic in the sense that I now do research beyond merely knowing that a product contains salicylic acid, for example. It's also important for me (and it should be for everyone else too) to know how products interact with each other on my skin. I mean, you definitely want your Garnier cleanser to get along with your Dermalogica serum because a toxic relationship is the last thing you need to be happening to your skin... literally and figuratively. 

READ MORE: Are you having trouble finding a good skincare regime? A dermatologist gives us the best hacks

So speaking of relationships, one dermalogical couple my face has been enjoying is the one between my Vitamin C serum and my medi-spray consisting of hyaluronic acid. And I think we should all be doing this, so let me break it down for you. 

What's the deal with Vitamin C?

Possibly the best-known vitamin of all. Vitamin C in its lipid-soluble form (known as ascorbic acid) is an amazing antioxidant that protects your skin from damage. It also boosts new collagen formation and fibroblast activity, strengthens your skin barrier, and smooths and brightens your skin. 

READ MORE: Revealing 7 truths about hyaluronic acid - plus, 3 must-have skin products containing this magic ingredient

What does hyaluronic acid do again? 

Hyaluronic acid (HA for short) is a compound with remarkable water-binding abilities. It can bind to over 1000 times its own weight in water molecules. Your body naturally manufactures it to keep your cells and skin properly hydrated. 

Hyaluronic acid is vital for normal skin function, as it plumps and leaves skin hydrated and healthy. Only thing is, with age and damage to your skin cells, your body’s hyaluronic acid production slows down. So you end up with dehydrated skin. 

Fortunately, we’ve discovered that you can give your body a hydration boost by applying hyaluronic acid topically. In fact, applying the best hyaluronic acid serums will even kickstart your body’s own HA production.

So can you use hyaluronic acid and vitamin C together?

A resounding yes. Hyaluronic acid and vitamin C serums together complement each other’s benefits. And it’s not only in skincare. Studies have shown these two compounds together are beneficial for everything from osteoarthritis to fillers, implants and, of course, ageing. 

In fact, it’s not uncommon to find skin products that contain both HA and ascorbic acid together as ingredients. Although, for the best results, you probably want to combine two of the top serums you already know and trust.

Okay, but what are the benefits?

Both contribute to skin health and help keep skin youthful. We know that vitamin C is anti-ageing because it contains cell-protecting antioxidants that make the skin more UV resistant. It also boosts collagen, cell function and healing, while improving skin texture, smoothness and brightening the skin. 

Vitamin C’s action in enhancing lipid formation in the skin barrier goes hand-in-hand with the age-preventing and max hydrating qualities of hyaluronic acid. HA traps and delivers moisture in the skin, plumping and forming it for optimal health. Together, they’re a formidable combination that acts on all the elements you need for healthy skin. 

How do you use them together?

For the best possible results for skin, it makes sense to apply both vitamin C and hyaluronic acid directly to the skin. Which is exactly what serums are designed to do. 

You always apply serums just before your moisturiser and SPF. So, after cleansing your skin, apply the hyaluronic acid serum to hydrate and plump the skin. Then, apply the vitamin C serum. It will smooth and brighten your skin.. Follow up with your normal moisturiser or cream and sun protection. You should be able to do this both in the morning and/or in the evening before bed. 

What to use: 

These are the two products I've been using in conjunction with each other.

Lamelle Vita-C Lipid Serum, R849 (30ml)

“Although ascorbic acid is the undeniable ‘king of C’ the lipid versions are extremely useful for people who can’t tolerate the acidity of Ascorbic Acid. I have chosen to use maximal concentrations of this gentle version of vitamin C so that consumers can confidently enjoy the anti-ageing benefits yet never worry about tolerability," says Dr Bradley Wagemaker, Medical Director at Lamelle Research Laboratories. 

benefits of vitamin c serum pure medi-spray and flash serum, R700

Dr Alek's own skin cosmoceuticals range contains a 50 kDa low weight hyaluronic acid as part of their hyaluronic acid complex.

Alternatively, you can try this African Beauty Secret HA serum, R169 on Takealot 

skin benefits

Source: Lamelle Research Laboratories 

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