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Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a naturally occurring sugar molecule found in high concentrations within your skin. It plays an important role in hydrating your skin and helps keep your complexion looking plump, supple, and smooth. As you age, your body produces less hyaluronic acid, which can contribute to dryness and visible signs of aging.

Using hyaluronic acid skincare products can help replenish hydration and support the skin’s natural moisture balance. Research shows that hyaluronic acid can hold several times its weight in water, making it an excellent hydrator for all skin types.1 You’ll find this ingredient in a wide range of products, including many of our facial serums, moisturizers, eye creams, and facial toner.

Important Things To Know About Hyaluronic Acid

  • Hyaluronic acid is a type of molecule (known as a glycosaminoglycan) that’s essential for maintaining the skin's moisture balance. Your skin naturally contains an abundance of hyaluronic acid when you’re young, but levels gradually decrease over time. This, in turn, lowers the skin’s ability to replenish moisture. In addition to intrinsic aging, several other factors—such as smoking, sun exposure, and poor diet—can also deplete hyaluronic acid in your skin. Topical hyaluronic acid can help replenish lost moisture and promote a more hydrated, youthful-looking complexion.
  • Hyaluronic acid is a popular ingredient used in a wide range of skincare products, such as facial moisturizers, body lotions, cleansers, eye creams, and toners. It’s primarily used in skincare products as a humectant—a type of moisturizer that draws water into the skin from moisture in the environment. You can find hyaluronic acid featured in many of our hydrating formulas, such as CeraVe Hydrating Hyaluronic Acid Serum and CeraVe Ultra-Light Moisturizing Gel.
  • When applied topically, hyaluronic acid acts like a sponge—attracting and retaining water on your skin’s surface. Because of its ability to bind and retain water, hyaluronic acid can help reduce transepidermal water loss (TEWL). This, in turn, can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and help keep your skin looking hydrated, plump, and smooth.
  • Hyaluronic acid can offer many benefits for your skin when used as part of a well-rounded skincare routine. By increasing your skin's surface hydration, hyaluronic acid can help soften and smooth skin texture. It can also help improve the appearance of your skin's plumpness and firmness. The lightweight nature of hyaluronic acid allows it to deliver long-lasting moisture without feeling heavy or greasy on your skin.
  • Hyaluronic acid is generally well-tolerated and suitable for all skin types, including dry, oily, normal, combination, and sensitive skin. Because it provides lightweight hydration, hyaluronic acid can be an ideal ingredient for those with oily or acne-prone skin. The lightweight nature of hyaluronic acid can also appeal to anyone looking for lasting hydration without a heavy or greasy feel. It’s often included in anti-aging skincare products, as hyaluronic acid can help visibly plump the skin and reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Hyaluronic acid is an effective moisturizing ingredient that can generally be used on both the face and body (depending on the formulation). Just be sure to read the label carefully before applying any hyaluronic acid skincare products and use only as directed. Many of CeraVe’s products with hyaluronic acid are suitable for use on the face and body, but this can vary depending on the formula.

    One multipurpose hyaluronic acid moisturizer that makes a great option for use on the face and body is CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion. This lightweight, oil-free moisturizer helps hydrate your skin and restore its natural protective barrier.
  • Hyaluronic acid levels naturally decline with age, so it’s important to use hyaluronic acid skincare products to help support your skin’s moisture balance. With that said, how often you should apply hyaluronic acid depends on the product you’re using. Two gentle yet effective options that can be used daily include our Hydrating Hyaluronic Acid Serum and Ultra-Light Moisturizing Gel—these formulas are suitable for all skin types and make great additions to any hydrating skincare routine.
  • According to the Cleveland Clinic, hyaluronic acid is a safe ingredient and adverse side effects are rare (when used as directed).2 The National Eczema Association (NEA) also includes hyaluronic acid among its list of beneficial ingredients for dry, eczema-prone skin.3 If you have any questions or concerns about whether hyaluronic acid is right for you, speak to a board-certified dermatologist for individualized guidance.
  • Hyaluronic acid can be found in a variety of products, and it’s typically okay to combine it with other skincare ingredients—including retinol. In fact, using hyaluronic acid may help counteract some of the skin irritation associated with retinol use, according to the Cleveland Clinic.4 One option with retinol and hyaluronic acid to consider is CeraVe Skin Renewing Retinol Serum, a daily facial serum that helps improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, skin texture, and radiance.

    In general, it’s best to use retinol serums as part of your evening skincare routine, since retinol can potentially make your skin more sensitive to the sun. For the same reason, it’s crucial to apply (and reapply) broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher during the day when using retinol products to help protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. If you have any questions about how to combine hyaluronic acid and retinol in your skincare routine, consult a board-certified dermatologist.
  • There are many ways to incorporate hyaluronic acid’s moisturizing and soothing benefits into your skincare routine. First and foremost, it’s important to use these products as directed on the label. You can try using a hydrating facial cleanser with hyaluronic acid, such as CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser, followed by our Hydrating Hyaluronic Acid Serum and Ultra-Light Moisturizing Gel.

    The gentle nature of hyaluronic acid also makes it suitable for use on delicate areas, such as around the eyes. We recommend trying CeraVe Eye Repair Cream, our hydrating hyaluronic acid eye cream for dark circles and under-eye puffiness. For more options, browse our products formulated with hyaluronic acid.

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