ASCP Skin Deep

MAY | JUNE 2018

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Page 45 of 84 43 expertadvice INGREDIENTS Acid Test How hyaluronic acid helps maintain skin hydration by Danné Montague-King Back in the 1980s, I produced a semi-serum named Hyalura Serum. The raw material was hyaluronic acid made from rooster combs, and when applied topically, it would flood the skin with moisture. Aside from its many medical uses, such as fi llers and joint conditioning, hyaluronic acid has fantastic water-binding powers depending on its percentage in a product and the quality of the raw material. My rooster comb extract (now mostly used for medical applications) became very costly for a then-struggling chemist (more alchemist really), and then suddenly the bird fl u epidemic hit Asia. I had more than one client scream "SARS" after reading my label, drop the bottle, and run! One older client showed up wearing a mask and demanded his money back from purchasing my Hyalura Serum. So, I switched to less eff ective raw materials—all of which work as moisture-binding mucopolysaccharides, but never with the water-attracting power of the original cock-a-doodle-do! The current veggie sources of hyaluronic acid are produced from the bacteria streptococcus fermentation (no SARS). This form of hyaluronic acid is a natural, linear polymer comprised of 3-N-acetylglucosamine and 4-glucuronic acid (hence the original name hyaluronan) with a molecular weight of 6 million Daltons. Sodium hyaluronate is the most usable material in my opinion, because the salt attracts water to the site. I would not use more than 2 percent for home use applications, as higher percentages will attract all the available moisture out of the epidermis (beware of companies touting claims of 10–75 percent in their products). Special methods of fractionating the molecular size of hyaluronic acid can increase epidermal penetration, but we are working on a nonindustry specifi c method of hydrolyzation

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