Agent Nateur, Beauty News
The Skin Barrier Protector: Lactic Acid
During the course of the upcoming year, you will witness lactic acid explode in the beauty business. This acid is one of the few that doesn’t dry out your skin, therefore I keep formulating it since I can’t get enough of it. It helps with rosacea, brightens and resurfaces the skin, safeguards the skin barrier, and locks in moisture as well. I have been championing this product for years which is why I have formulated it into:
- acid (wash) – our lactic acid skin brightening cleanser
- holi (wash) – our ageless resurfacing body cleanser
- holi (bright) – our botox in a jar, resurfacing glass face mask
Despite the fact that each acid has a unique set of advantages, glycolic and salicylic acid are not my preferred acids because I frequently hear and observe clients complaining that they experience skin irritation and drying. One of the reasons I like lactic acid so much is that it doesn’t cause the skin barrier to erode over time like glycolic and salicylic acid can. It actually has the opposite effect. The addition of a lactic acid to your skincare regimen has a ton of preventive and regenerative advantages. One of these is how lactic acid affects the ceramides in our skin’s protective layer and how it can improve the skin barrier’s strength and functionality.
Ceramides are lipids found in the top layer of the skin and these are an important part of the protective layer on the skin. Lactic has been shown, in vitro, to increase the levels of ceramides in the stratum corneum (the skin) and studies have also shown that this increase in ceramides lead to improvements in the barrier function of the skin (think thicker stronger skin) which in turn reduced transepidermal water loss. This means that using lactic acid can lead to firmer, plumper, better hydrated skin which will help to reduce and soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. This increase in barrier function and strength of skin barrier has been supported by other scientific research too, also confirming that it comes from the increased strength of lipids in the stratum corneum. So, incorporating acid (wash) as part of your cleansing routine, holi (wash) for your daily shower, holi (lift) as your daily face serum, or holi (bright) as your overnight mask is going to not only exfoliate and refine the skin surface but it is also going to help with your overall skin health and anti-aging journey too.
Even though lactic and lactobionic acids are less strong than glycolic and salicylic acids, studies have shown that they are nonetheless quite effective at moisturizing and hydrating skin. They hydrate because, unlike glycolic and salicylic acids, which are known to dry out and irritate skin, lactic acid’s special profile and lactic structure actually assist water connect with the skin. Alpha hydroxy and polyhydroxy acids (AHA and PHA) are able to bind a lot of water and function as a strong antioxidant agent by inhibiting matrix metalloproteinases and by having significant chelating characteristics. This causes hydration.
Because it is abundant in antioxidants, promotes cell regeneration, and stimulates the formation of collagen and elastin beneath the skin barrier, lactic acid is also a fantastic ally in any anti-aging trip.
While glycolic acid can have the reverse effect, severely affecting collagen levels over time and speeding up the aging process, lactic acid has smoothing and lifting characteristics.
Furthermore, hyperpigmentation, dark patches, and sun spots can all be effectively treated with lactic acid (as well as more sensitive skin conditions like rosacea).
It is nothing short of miraculous to see the changes in melasma and black patches that I have observed when folks begin a lactic-acid regimen. For anyone who has melasma or hyperpigmentation, I always suggest an acid wash. Given the increased size of the Agent range, I would also match acid (wash) with holi (lift) and holi (bright). All of these products include lactic acid as well, and by using the holi (bright) refining, glass resurfacing mask overnight, you may give the lactic acid time to do its job effectively.
So how does applying lactic acid to the skin feel? First of all, lactic acid should never feel drying despite the fact that it is exfoliating and purifying. Because lactic acid exfoliates and smooths out the skin’s texture, I almost always notice a brighter, lighter complexion with a subtle glow after washing with acid (wash) or sleeping in holi (bright). This is lactic acid’s immediate effect (when you rinse it off, you almost immediately see a difference), but adding lactic acid to your skincare routine has long-term benefits as well.
If you can’t tell, I love lactic! I formulated this incredible ingredient into my formulations to benefit you whether you are 20 or 70. Let me know how you get on with your lactic journey.