Hyaluronic serum is a commercially available form of hyaluronic acid that is commonly used as a stand-alone cosmetic product. It is also used in combination with other ingredients in skin-care products, especially anti-aging formulations. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a naturally occurring protein — mucopolysaccharide, to be more precise. It is synthesized by the body and is present in skin cells. Primarily responsible for maintaining the oil-water equilibrium of the dermal tissues, it helps provide adequate hydration and nourishment. With age, the synthesis of hyaluronic acid in the body diminishes and the skin begins to show signs of aging in the form of wrinkles, crows feet and sagging.
The commercial application of hyaluronic acid was patented by Endre Balazs in 1942. Contrary to popular belief, hyaluronic acid is not an “acid” but a salt with a neutral pH. Frequently described as nature’s moisturizer, hyaluronic acid has also found a place in the field of orthopedics. Medical researchers have attempted to use the compound as a lubricant for joints and muscles. Hyaluronic acid may also be used as an injection in its stabilized form. Restylane®, which is a hyaluronic acid injection, is becoming an increasingly popular alternative to Botox® and collagen injections.
Hyaluronic acid forms the main active ingredient for commercially available serum preparations and hyaluronic creams which may also contain other botanical extracts, oils and fragrances. This serum supplements the body’s natural production of HA by the skin and promotes cell-regeneration and repair coupled with an intense moisturizing action. The compound works by binding with moisture in the air and retaining it for long periods of time. This hydrophilic and moisture-retaining property of hyaluronic serum is responsible for its popularity as a moisturizer and an anti-wrinkle formulation. Some hyaluronic serums are formulated to lock intercellular moisture derived from liquids consumed by the body rather than depending on atmospheric humidity.
Hydrated skin becomes soft, supple and taut, thus filling in the fine lines and plumping up the wrinkles. This may be why many users observe an instant change in their appearance after using hyaluronic serum. Since it is an expensive compound, it is often used sparingly and a few drops of the potion are enough to bring about the desired results. The topical use of HA in the form of hyaluronic serum has been approved for use by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).