4 Key Ingredients in Your Skin Care Products

What's in your skin care products?

Walking in to any department or drug store beauty section you will be welcomed by a sea of skin care products boasting a full range of skin-changing capabilities.  You pick up a bottle or jar for a closer look and are confronted with the overwhelming sense of what’s important and what’s not?  What ingredients do I need to pay attention too and which can I skip?

Here are the facts you need to know on 4 of the top ingredients when it comes to skin care products.

Hyaluronic Acid
What is it: Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is found naturally in your body helping in tissue connectivity, cell renewal, and maintaining the skin’s moisture levels.

What does it do: With the ability to hold 1000 times its weight in water, a product with hyaluronic acid can be a life saver for dry, dull skin.

*Did you know: Hyaluronic Acid is a common factor in many fillers.  In this effect, the HA works to fill fine lines and wrinkles or plump lips!

Why would I want it: As you age, your natural levels of hyaluronic acid begin to decrease.  (Smoking and a poor diet can also have an affect on your HA levels long term.)  Hyaluronic acid products work to return a smooth, supple appearance to your skin.


What are they: Alpha Hydroxy Acid and Beta Hydroxy Acid are both exfoliant agents derived from fruit or milk (AHAs) or plants (BHAs).  You may also hear them referred to as glycolic acids (AHAs) or salicylic acids (BHAs).

What do they do: Remember the importance of exfoliation? AHAs work to exfoliate on the surface of the skin while BHAs penetrate the skin working towards a deeper exfoliation.  Both have shown signs to help improve skin texture and tone.

Why would I want them: Skipping out on exfoliation can leave your skin looking dull and lackluster as layers of dead skin cells and environmental agents begin to pile up over time.  Regular exfoliation has shown to boost cell turnover, also reducing the appearance of fine lines.


What are they: Defenders and protectors against free radicals from the sun, pollution and other environmental factors that increase the likelihood of wrinkles and discoloration.

What do they do: The term antioxidants covers a range of types including vitamin C, vitamin E, ferulic acid, green tea and more.  While a mixture of antioxidants is best, these power house ingredients can correct current sun damage, prevent future sun damage as well as lessen the incidence of fine lines and wrinkles.

Why would I want them: A good antioxidant serum is a staple in our skin care recommendations as they are the under armor for your skin, working to protect from the inside out.


What is it: A vitamin A derivative, products containing retinol agents are front runners when it comes to anti-aging

What does it do: A better question for retinols is what don’t they do!  Shown to have powerful effects in exfoliation and cell turnover, retinol agents boost the body’s natural production of hyaluronic acid and collagen.  That means a good retinol agent is working to reduce signs of pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, all while improving tone, texture, color and hydration levels.

Why would I want it: We have a saying in our office “When you know better, you do better!” and that is especially true when it comes to retinol products as well.  After sunscreen it is the product we recommend most when patients inquire about skin care regimens due to all of it’s anti-aging properties.  With retinol agents, it’s best to ease into these products and we recommend consulting a skin care specialist before picking one up to try it out.

While this list by no means includes all the ingredients you will see in your skin care products, we hope this helps clarify a few of the key players.  If you’re interested in learning more about the above ingredients and product suggestions, contact our office to schedule a Complimentary Cosmetic Consultation.  You can also check out the products we offer in house at our online product store.

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